Verdant Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

23

After 4 steeps gongfu style, placed leaves in about 10 oz water to cold brew overnight. Still got nothing but an unpleasant taste of burnt bark water. Very disappointing.

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23

(5g in 5 oz) Steeps: 10 sec, 30, 40, 120.
Confused – I can’t get past the roasted-to-the-point-of-burnt taste. Will use leaves in cold brew to see if any other flavors come out.

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86

This was far more interesting than Verdant’s regular Jin Jun Mei. Lots of bold flavor, beautiful color, and a rich body with hints of malt chocolate. On the nose, I get sweet cocoa, malt, and cherries. The wet leaf adds some ash and woodsy notes.

First steep is thick and malty with a little molasses in the finish. Bittersweet chocolate notes come out as it cools. The second steep produces a deep dark cherry red liquor. Much stronger flavor with some hints of bitterness. This was probably because I oversteeped it. The next few infusions tasted like Golden Monkey with lots of brown sugar and malt. A syrupy, honey like sweetness sets in during later steepings.

I enjoyed this one a lot. It was robust and delicious. However, I won’t be rushing out to order more as its similar to some of the Chinese black teas I already have.

Flavors: Cocoa, Dark Bittersweet, Malt, Molasses

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 3 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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82

Cold brew steep with 10 oz water with leaves after initial 8. Flavors about the same, but a bit more refreshing cold. Good way to finish off the leaves.

Preparation
5 g 10 OZ / 295 ML

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82

(5g/5 oz/208/10 sec +5)
(Prepared gongfu style, about 8 steepings.) Enjoyed the smell of the dry leaves (sweet, earthy, toasty). First few steepings start off light, almost thin, but a little creamy. As it cools off, richer flavor of buttered green vegetables starts to come through. Further steepings get slightly richer, but also dryer. Flavors started to wash out after 8 steepings. I have the leaves cold brewing in fridge for tomorrow. Overall, probably a little too delicate for me. I kept waiting for the flavors (which were good, but light) to stand out more.

Preparation
5 g 6 OZ / 177 ML

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81

After gongfu tastings (3 steepings), placed leaves in 12 oz water & refrigerated overnight. Iced was good, refreshing, with pleasant vegetable flavor. Toasty notes gone, though whether from the original steepings or from being iced, not sure.

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81

(First attempt at gongfu style; first tea from Verdant)
5g tea, 6 oz water, 175. 10 second 1st steep, +5 seconds following

Dry leaves have strong, fresh, but toasty green scent – reminds me of homemade kale chips. 1st steep – very sweet vegetal smell, but still with toasty note like kale chips or roasted green vegetables; taste is savory, smooth, a little buttery. 2nd steep similar, but ends with touch of dryness. 3rd steep is less roast-y so sweetness stands out more, a bit more dryness & touch of astringency at end. [Stopped after 3rd, set leaves on tea towel for later.]

Preparation
5 g 6 OZ / 177 ML

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72

Backlog.

I’m a big green tea fan but the hype surrounding dragonwell has always puzzled me. I’ve tried it from multiple vendors and using different brewing methods yet the flavor never quite lived up to expectations. This spring when Verdant tea released a series of new dragonwell varietals, I decided to give longjing another shot. I ordered samples of all their new dragonwell teas to see if any of them could win me over.

This particular tea is a rare semi-wild varietal with an intriguing flavor profile. I had another wild dragonwell from What-Cha recently that was very fruity and delicious. This one though was quite vegetal and had a roasted note which I dislike in green tea. I caught some of the classic chestnut along with stir fried broccoli and a sheng puerh like bitterness. Leaf quality isn’t the highest, lots of broken pieces in my sample pouch.

Neither this nor any of the other dragonwells I’ve tried from Verdant this spring converted me. I prefer my greens to have fresh and grassy flavors. The smoky notes put me off and reminded me of gunpowder tea. I appreciate the ability to order inexpensive samples from Verdant. This is a pricey tea and it was nice to able to try a few grams without risk.

Flavors: Broccoli, Chestnut, Smoke, Vegetal

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C

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Short gongfu session with about 4-5 steeps, each one more bitter and drying than the last. First steep was lightly melony sweet and little toasty toasty, nothing too exceptional, the second steep coming in with a sudden brash and unpleasant astringency and char flavor that only intensified with each steep. Not until I finally did I give up on this tea and trash it did I realize it’s an oolong, maybe I should have used cooler water? I only had a 5g sample so I guess I’ll never know!

Flavors: Char, Melon

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 88 ML

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80

So I was a bit busy this morning and didn’t set any kind of timer or stopwatch… so I steeped this approximately a min give or take a few seconds. It didn’t seem to suffer though as far as I can tell. I was a bit impatient to drink my tea so I burned my tongue again… (happens when I’m too eager to get my tea fix). So I can’t pin down exactly what I’m tasting but it tastes yummy! I swear I’ll do a better job tomorrow on my day off. It was from a Verdant Tea tea of the month sample ages ago. I will clear up my tea stash :D

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 1 min, 0 sec 16 OZ / 473 ML

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85

Gongfu style brewing. First time trying this type of review

0:30 – Surprisingly tasty. Some smokey flavors with a hint of chocolate?

0:45 – More full-bodied with stronger smokey flavors. I taste some fermentation as well.

1:45: Less smokey flavor and more fermentation flavors. I still taste a bit of chocolate.

1:10 – more fermentation and good black tea taste. Less chocolate.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 tsp 6 OZ / 177 ML

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91
drank Laoshan Black by Verdant Tea
1887 tasting notes

3 tsp leaf

First steep 450 mL hot water(under boiling), 3 minutes with soy milk added
The milk rounds out the cocoa and make it creamier. Dark bittersweet cocoa and fire/pan roasted notes. To a lesser degree, minerals and carob.

Seconds steep 600 mL hot water (under boiling), 5 minutes steep (no milk)
this is great plain. In fact, I don’t recommend using a high quality black in a latte, but I was really in the mood for a latte.More mineral and dark woody notes, unsweetened cocoa powder, dark chocolate, caramelised brown sugar, molasses, honey, roasty. It is exactly what you expect a Laoshan black to taste like.

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Burnt Sugar, Cocoa, Dark Bittersweet, Dark Chocolate, Dark Wood, Honey, Molasses, Roasted, Roasted Barley, Tannic

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 4 min, 45 sec 3 tsp

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mmmmm possible miss for me. I’ll have to try this again and play with the steepings and water temp. So far though, not really a far, though that’s not really surprising as i’m more shou than sheng. May need to pass this along to someone who will better appreciate it but will play with it a bit more first :)

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80
drank Bai Mu Dan by Verdant Tea
3 tasting notes

White teas are my favorite so far and I really enjoyed this one. I had this via the gong fu method. Nice vegetal flavor with some spice to it. Very floral both in aroma and flavor. My palate isn’t the strongest, so I didn’t taste everything Verdant’s website mentions (as in the peppercorns or papaya). I’ve had white peonies with more depth than this one, but it still ranks high and I plan to continue buying it in the future.

Note: I didn’t use enough tea in this method, so I will likely update this review in the future.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Clove, Cucumber, Lettuce

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 2 g 6 OZ / 177 ML

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82
drank Golden Earl by Verdant Tea
739 tasting notes

I have this back from when it was in the tea of the month blends. So… it’s old…. I taste bergamot. I’m not sure what else I’m tasting but I’m enjoying this tea.

Flavors: Bergamot

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 16 OZ / 473 ML

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91

This is a tea I have been meaning to review for awhile now. I kind of have this goal of reviewing at least three examples of each Wuyi oolong cultivar I can get my hands on, but had always put off reviewing a Shui Xian because they tend to be so easy to come by. Well, I finally got so sick of seeing this shiny silver sample pouch staring at me each time I opened the kitchen tea cabinet that I decided to gongfu it after work yesterday evening. I found it to be a truly exceptional tea, though I am not certain the price I paid for it was justified.

As mentioned above, I gongfued this tea. I only had 5 grams to play around with, so I worked with what I had. After a quick rinse, I steeped the full 5 grams of loose tea leaves in 4 ounces of 208 F water for 6 seconds. This infusion was followed by 15 subsequent infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 8 seconds, 10 seconds, 15 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, and 7 minutes.

Prior to infusion, the dry tea leaves emitted aromas of char, wood, rock sugar, and saffron. The rinse brought out touches of jasmine, chicory, moss, damp grass, cinnamon, and aloe. The first infusion brought out enhanced floral and spicy characteristics on the nose, as well as touches of moist earth and cream. In the mouth, I picked up nice and surprisingly robust notes of cream, aloe, jicama, chicory, damp grass, char, wood, rock sugar, cinnamon, saffron, and moss. I didn’t pick up any jasmine-like flavor, but it was there on the nose. Subsequent infusions brought out cannabis, burdock, dandelion, wet stones, minerals, roasted almond, stewed apricot, and butterscotch notes. The later infusions were heavy on mineral, stone, moss, wood, and damp grass flavors, though I could still pick up some cream and some vegetal touches. I also noted the emergence of a buttered popcorn note, which I often find in many Wuyi oolongs.

This was an interesting and very enjoyable tea. Unlike a lot of oolongs, it let me know what to expect up front and then only changed subtly afterwards. Still, there was a lot going on with it and a lot to appreciate about it. If the price were not so exorbitant ($25+ for 25 grams, nearly $6 for a single 5 gram serving), I would probably order more. Overall, this was definitely worth a try, but I’m not at a point where I can once again justify spending so much on such a small amount of tea.

Flavors: Almond, Apricot, Butterscotch, Cannabis, Char, Cinnamon, Cream, Dandelion, Floral, Grass, Jasmine, Mineral, Moss, Popcorn, Saffron, Sugar, Vegetal, Wet Earth, Wet Rocks, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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76

This tea is a dark oolong with a baked orange aroma. I get a fruity citrus taste with flavors of orange and maybe a hint of floral on the back end. It is not a flavor profile that appeals to me, but it was not a bad tea with decent sweetness and no astringent aftertaste.

Flavors: Citrus, Orange

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 g 5 OZ / 147 ML

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90
drank 2017 Huang Jin Gui by Verdant Tea
136 tasting notes

I’m enjoying this one a lot. Floral and creamy with a hint of citrus when pushed with high temp.

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96

Gave the rest of this away. Drinking some of the 2016 autumn version. Tastes amazing too! Great tea!

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96

This is hitting the spot. I’ve been holding off on the best homemade caramel rolls and needed something sweet like this one.

I’m finding this oolong to be nicer than the Laoshan black teas that I’ve had, but those are some of my favorite teas too. I have yet to try the greens, but those are on my list.

Daylon R Thomas

Hands down prefer the oolong to the black despite the black’s excellence.

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