I finished this off in the past todays in a great goodbye. I’ve had an interesting relationship with this one.

This was one of the driest blacks I’ve had, but also one I liked. I loved it the first few times because of its immense cocoa and pumpernickel stout like notes, and its sneaky honey notes and maple that would appear from the cocoa and the grain. That was at the edge of winter to spring. Spring and summer, it tasted like a pumpkin seed dry spell. It made me think of caraway, but not quite as spicy….don’t rely on me for that note. The cocoa and pumpkin seed are the best nuances to an overall nutty and malty tea. Sunflower seeds was the nut that I could think of personally.

The last few brews were incredibly chocolaty and malty. I decided to add some cocoa nibs to the last brew, and it was so comforting to drink. I could have made my own passage du desir if I had candied chest nuts because holy crap was it sweet. It was almost boozy never mind there was no flavoring…though the nibs were the sweetened variety.

Anyway, I am thankful that I finished off. I would have some again in the future, but I have had sweeter Bai Lins and recommend this tea if you like it on the dry side western or gong fu. I still think it is a little overpriced.

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First Off, Current Targets:

Whispering Pines Alice
Grand Crew Teas
Wuyi Origins Jin Jun Mei Sampler
What-Cha Jin Jun Mei
Good Luxurious Work Teas
A good Qilan
Best Sachet Teas

Dislikes: Heavy Tannin, Astringency, Bitterness, or Fake Flavor, Overly herby herbal or aged teas

Picky with: Higher Oxidation Oolongs, Red Oolongs (Some I love, others give me headaches or are almost too sweet), Mint Teas

Currently, my stash is overflowing. Among my favorites are What-Cha’s Lishan Black, Amber Gaba Oolong, Lishan Oolong, Qilan Oolong, White Rhino, Kenya Silver Needle, Tong Mu Lapsang Black (Unsmoked); Whispering Pines Alice, Taiwaneese Assam, Wang’s Shanlinxi, Cuifeng, Dayuling; Beautiful Taiwan Tea Co.“Old Style” Dong Ding, Mandala Milk Oolong


I am an MSU graduate, and current alternative ed. high school social studies and history teacher. I formerly minored in anthropology, and I love Egyptian and classical history. I love to read, write, draw, paint, sculpt, fence(with a sword), practice calisthenics on rings, lift weights, workout, relax, and drink a cuppa tea…or twenty.

I’ve been drinking green and black teas ever since I was little living in Hawaii. Eastern Asian influence was prominent with my friends and where I grew up, so I’ve been exposed to some tea culture at a young age. I’ve come a long way since I began on steepster and now drink most teas gong fu, especially oolong. Any tea that is naturally creamy, fruity, or sweet without a lot of added flavoring ranks as a must have for me. I also love black teas and dark oolongs with the elusive “cocoa” note. My favorites are lighter Earl Greys, some white teas like What-Cha’s Kenyan offerings, most Hong-Cha’s, darker Darjeelings, almost anything from Nepal, Green Shan Lin Xi’s, and Greener Dong Dings. I’m in the process of trying Alishan’s. I also tend to really enjoy Yunnan Black or Red teas and white teas. I’m pickier with other teas like chamomile, green teas, and Masalas among several.

I used to give ratings, but now I only rate teas that have a strong impression on me. If I really like it, I’ll write it down.

I’ll enjoy a tea almost no matter what, even if the purpose is more medicinal, for it is my truest vice and addiction.


Michigan, USA

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