Zhi Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

73
drank Apple Cider by Zhi Tea
3730 tasting notes

First major snowfall in Toronto means first 3 hr drive home. So that sucked. However I came home to my customized SipsBy box complete with this tea which actually tastes like a hybrid between a chai and apple cider. It is quite nice. I also set up some cocoa chili pumpkin tea (another one of the teas in the SipsBy box) in chocolate milk to cold brew. Given there’s actual chilis in it, fingers crossed that doesn’t curdle. Now back to sipping on this…

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33

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91
drank Gong Fu Black by Zhi Tea
1 tasting notes

The BEST!

Flavors: Almond, Apple, Apple Skins

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 15 sec

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71
drank Austin Breakfast by Zhi Tea
4 tasting notes

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75

Good, not great, TGY. Awesome for iced tho, and for a kinda big gong fu session.

iced: 8g tea, 240g water @195F for 4 min, pour over 200+ g ice

gong fu-ish: 8g tea, 150g water @195F. 1st steep for 1.5 min, then 30 sec for steep 2-4, then add 30 sec per steep

Flavors: Floral, Jasmine, Melon

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 1 min, 30 sec 8 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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78
drank GABA Oolong by Zhi Tea
5 tasting notes

Had a hard time dialing this one in, but I think I got there.
only time for one steep: 7g tea, 16oz water @boil for 3min
multi steeps: 7g tea, 30 sec rinse with 195F water, 200 ml water for 1.5 min, add 30 sec per steep afterwards

Darker/more heavily oxidized oolong, nice sweet rounded notes of dried fruit competing with some damp woody and slight leather tannic notes

Flavors: Leather, Plums, Raisins, Sugarcane, Wet Wood

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 1 min, 30 sec 7 g 7 OZ / 200 ML

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80

touch of bitterness in the grassy notes, finishes delightfully stone fruit-y

Flavors: Celery, Grass, Honey, Peach

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec 7 g 16 OZ / 473 ML

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72

Two veeery different approaches to this one:
Western (6 g to 16oz water @205F for 3’) will give you very floral notes with touches of peach and nectarine on the back end.
Gong fu (6 g to 3.5 oz water @195F for 1.5 min, then 30 sec steeps afterwards) will give very vegetal front that flows into a very bread-y, cinnamon toast crunch-ish sort of finish.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Floral, Peach, Vegetal

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 6 g 16 OZ / 480 ML

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94

This milk oolong is pleasant because the milk flavor isn’t too overwhelming. Just enough to be there. Not too much.

Preparation
1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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72
drank Coconut Assam by Zhi Tea
3730 tasting notes

GCTTB

Well, this is a pretty nice assam. Smooth and malty. Is there coconut? Not really. It is a little creamy and slightly sweet so perhaps that is where the coconut comes in but I find myself searching for the coconut flavor. If this were simply an assam tea it would be a nice option but I find myself wanting more from a tea that has coconut in its name. Thank you Mookit for adding it to the box. It was a fun tea to try :)

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88
drank Coconut Assam by Zhi Tea
5672 tasting notes

GCTTB Round 6

Cold Brew!

Originally when I was looking through things in the box to try I skipped past this one, but then putting things back in the box I gave it a second glance and I’m really glad I did because this cold brew was absolutely phenomenal!

The coconut notes were just so rich and had the perfect level of sweetness and freshness! It really, really strongly reminded me of coconut macaroons. Like, instantly I was able to place that sweet confectionery treat and it was so satisfying! Buttery, creamy, and with vanilla undertones. I wanted to dunk it into milk; but of course I was drinking a tea and not eating cookies, so that wasn’t totally feasible.

Excellent though! Truly excellent.

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drank Coconut Assam by Zhi Tea
795 tasting notes

Another Zhi tea sample I got for Xmas! I’m always impressed with a tea that I can enjoy without any additives. A lot of the time with blacks they have to bitter of a bite, especially malty breakfast teas that I have been loving on so much lately, so I adjust them with cream and sweetener. This tea however is super smooth and creamy on it’s own. The assam and coconut merge so well together that it is hard to tell the two apart. Most coconut teas that I have encountered are green unless it is a mix of many flavors that uses coconut to add something, not be the focal point of the tea. I am enjoying this enough to debate if it should be a staple in my collection, but coconut has tendency to go bad faster than I can finish a bag, so maybe sample sizes are a better route for this. Hmmmm….. tea things to ponder.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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drank Vanilla Rose by Zhi Tea
795 tasting notes

One of six Zhi samples I got for Xmas! So far I’m feeling a little eh about this one. I like the base which is nice and smooth. I’m not really getting much in the way of rose or vanilla tho. I get a vague floral taste, but nothing that says rose. The scent of the tea while dry is much more interesting than when brewed. Not impressed, but there is time for it to grow on me.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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drank Masala Chai by Zhi Tea
795 tasting notes

God I love this tea! Such good chais from Zhi. It’s been hard to step away from this tea recently and pay attention to enjoying my older teas that I need to get through. This particular cup isn’t as delicious as previous due to my exploring soy alternative creamers. I’m trying an almond/coconut based creamer in this cup and it is distracting from the lovely spices in this tea. I was drinking a lot of soy creamer recently and heard someone talking about how severely it effects her, so I thought I’d take a soy break and see if I noticed any changes in allergy, skin or anything else.
The tea still has the warm well rounded spice coming through… lots of cinnamon, ginger and cardamon. I love it!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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drank Masala Chai by Zhi Tea
795 tasting notes

I have been drinking obscene amounts of this tea lately! It has such a warming feeling, which I think is the cinnamon and ginger. I don’t get a ton of cardamon, it’s there but is hiding in the background. No cloves in this one and it isn’t very spicy (I do love a spicy chai), but makes up for it in how flavorful and well rounded it is. I have been drinking it with a bit of honey and creamer which makes it so delicious and steeping it like I would any other tea. Might try it chai style on the stovetop at some point, but it’s hard to imagine an improvement on how it is now.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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80

Slight floral scent to the first steeping, which results in a floral note upfront. It reminds me of chrysanthemums, but then deepens into a rounded grassy note that lingers. I am normally not a huge fan of floral teas, preferring deeper-notes, but I believe this tea is a good tea to have mid-afternoon, which is when I am currently enjoying it.

As far as prep goes, It’s a beautiful tea to observe. I chose to make this in my English-style pot, using 1/2 the regular amount I normally would have, to appreciate the difference in volume that normally comes with preparing an oolong.

Flavors: Floral, Grass

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 18 OZ / 532 ML

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77
drank Coconut Assam by Zhi Tea
236 tasting notes

This is a pretty solid, if not remarkable, tea. All the elements are there. A nice coconut flavor. The Assam gives it a good background to work with. The bitterness factor is low to none if you steep it correctly. I bet I could make this really pop with a splash of some coconut coffee creamer. I can almost hear some of you gasping and clutching at your pearls. I get it. I often like my tea unadulterated as well. I could make an exception for this tea though.

Flavors: Coconut, Malt

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 15 sec 4 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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82
drank Austin Breakfast by Zhi Tea
559 tasting notes

This was another sample from Joshua who is working with Zhi Tea. Thanks, Joshua!!

The dry leaf has a very sweet, Ceylon-like aroma. Like hay and vintage leather. The leaves themselves are little brown nuggets, some broken, some whole. The resulting dark amber tea is a strong cup. Definitely appropriate for the first tea of the day. I get notes of leather, raisins, hay, and something woodsy. Sort of like the way the forest smells when it hasn’t rained in a long time.

I can’t say I’m as impressed with this one as I was with Assam Breakfast. It’s pretty astringent, though the flavors are nice. I guess there’s a sharpness that’s not appealing to me as much. But still, I’m happy to have it for the upcoming first cool mornings of fall.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Dark Wood, Hay, Leather, Raisins

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec
MrQuackers

The other day it rained after not raining for a while and I enjoyed that aroma. A good breakfast tea should have some astringency to it along with depth due to tanin. Teas that don’t tend to be flat.

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I received this tea as a sample from Joshua – thank you!

The dry leaves smell a lot like the Chinese dried plums that I loved to eat when I was little. I followed the directions and used 2 tsp/cup in boiling water for 3 minutes. The resulting brew was a pretty amber color. I’m not sure if I used too many leaves or accidentally oversteeped, but it was quite bitter. However, I do also get a maltiness and a fruitiness. It does pack a punch, so I think it’s great as an early morning wake-up tea! I rarely take my tea with milk, but I think this tea would be good with some milk.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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96
drank Assam Breakfast by Zhi Tea
87 tasting notes

Oh my! This is a delightful Assam tea. I’m getting lots of sweet stone fruit flavors of bright cherry and deep, ripe plum. It’s pleasantly malty and smooth – Very smooth. There are no bitter notes or rough edges, only a pleasant astringency typical of Assams. Overall the tea was creamy and sweet. I detected a smidge of cocoa.
For those who are Assamaphobic, this Assam would be a safe choice – Sturdy, but oh so gentle and completely delicious!
Thanks for the sample, Josh! I loved every sip!

Flavors: Cherry, Cocoa, Creamy, Plums, Smooth, Stonefruits, Sweet

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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96
drank Assam Breakfast by Zhi Tea
87 tasting notes

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