Backlog from last night – sample from the GCTTB

I did this gong-fu last night: 6-7 steeps with near boiling water. Really short rinse, then steeps of 10s/15s/20s/30s/40s/1m.

The first two or three steeps were very intense – they had notes of grass, hay, tobacco, and something kind of skunky but also quite fresh and green in the background. The second steep also had a hint of perfume in it.

However, after the third or fourth steep the flavour thinned out dramatically. It became more watery and I tasted a mineral/stone note then. Also, I noticed that when I snifffed the leaves after the fourth steep, I got a smoky hint like brandy or whiskey.

This was an interesting tea, but I don’t think I’d get it for myself. Thanks for adding it, Ubacat!

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Updated March 2016:

I’m a writer and editor who’s fallen in love with loose-leaf tea. I’ve also set up a site for tea reviews at – an excellent excuse to keep on buying and trying new blends. There will always be more to discover!

In the meantime, since joining Steepster in January 2014, I’ve gotten a pretty good handle on my likes and dislikes

Likes: Raw/Sheng pu’erh, sobacha, fruit flavours, masala chais, jasmine, mint, citrus, ginger, Ceylons, Chinese blacks, rooibos.

Dislikes (or at least generally disinclined towards): Hibiscus, rosehip, chamomile, licorice, lavender, really vegetal green teas, shu/ripe pu’erh.

Things I generally decide on a case-by-case basis: Oolong, white teas.

Still need to do my research on: matcha

I rarely score teas anymore, but if I do, here’s the system I follow:

100-85: A winner!
84-70: Pretty good. This is a nice, everyday kind of tea.
69-60: Decent, but not up to snuff.
59-50: Not great. Better treated as an experiment.
49-0: I didn’t like this, and I’m going to avoid it in the future. Blech.


Toronto, ON, Canada


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