667 Tasting Notes

captain’s backlog teadate 26-may-2020

dry leaf smells like strawberries and chocolate with an undertone of apricot
warm leaf has a deep fruitiness like overripe strawberries mixed with syruped apricots
rinse is the same with the addition of forest floor

the tea is difficult to describe beyond being smooth, mellow and bitter. alkaline with a light sweetness and a light fruity finish.

third infusion: MEL-LOW. light menthol in chest

fourth infusion: properly zoned out

Smooth and settled but obviously not in an aged way, maybe a bit muted, deceptively heavy, savory and alkaline. Moderate young bitterness and mild green astringency are there, increasing with each steep after maybe the fifth. Didn’t brew this one out due to the combination of total relaxation and growing astringency.
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I’ll be coming back to this cake very soon.

Flavors: Apricot, Bitter, Chocolate, Forest Floor, Fruity, Heavy, Menthol, Smooth, Strawberry

Boiling 7 g 4 OZ / 110 ML

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captain’s backlog teadate 25-may-2020

i was spotted in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest by my friend
but it wasn’t me
i was drinking tea the first night at work father’s house

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[7g, 110mL clay pot, boilingish]

Super floral wet leaf! The tea has that wild profile with a clear bitterleaf-hay base accented by light woodsy, musky and grape-berry fruity flavors. Turns sour later. Light, buttery mouthfeel early. Good thing I’m drinking right after dinner. The heavy alakalinity hit my body hard. It took a while but that chest-thumping energy finally hit. Not finding it to be heady at all.

Like some other Chinese wild teas I’ve tried, I’m not finding this favorable in terms of body effects. I’m hoping to one day find one that works for me.

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tonight i had a modest 4g in a 60mL gaiwan while cooking fajitas
i recently finished off a bag of Whispering Pines’ The Ranger, a blend of yesheng hongcha (wild tree black tea) and lapsang souchong. what a bangin’ tea. it got me super pumped to drink through the variety of yesheng puerh in my collection, which is what i’ve been doing this past week. i’m awake and feelin’ just fine. Slumbering Dragon and other yesheng are very kind to my sensitive nature when i listen.

Flavors: Apricot, Bitter, Blueberry, Cream, Floral, Forest Floor, Hay, Herbaceous, Lychee, Mineral, Muscatel, Tart, Vegetal, Wood

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Breaking into a Simao tuocha raw from Tea Urchin, Spring 2003. The paper has printing and branding but I can’t read it. Received as a freebie when I bought some cakes last year. Haven’t seen it for sale on their site.

The first several cups have been all creamy fluff and whispers and silk. The tea just disappears. Instant mouthfeel association with the 2005 Changtai Yun Pu Zhi Dian from Crimson Lotus. Mellow, aged tonal taste with nuttiness, leather?, apricot with herbs and perfume. A big punch of bitterness disappears quickly after the swallow. Kind of a milky honey huigan. Woody incense smoke and rose perfume aftertaste. Warming before a light minty cooling appears later. Small healthy leaf, lots of buds, more brown than green.

Good freebie, I’m very appreciative :)

Flavors: Apricot, Bitter, Citrus, Forest Floor, Herbs, Honey, Hot hay, Leather, Milk, Mint, Nutty, Perfume, Raisins, Rose, Smoke, Sweet, Wood

Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 4 OZ / 110 ML

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drank Lemon French Macaron by Butiki Teas
667 tasting notes

Leave it to tea-sipper to both perplex me and brighten my day :)

First cup gone. Steep second for 5 minutes or so. After I pull the basket strainer from the cup, little oil blobs rise to the surface of the tea, burst and spread into iridescent splotches. When I take a sip, they disappear obviously into my mouth. Set the cup down, the blobs rise again. bloop.

By the way, this is stuff is really quite nice. Prettiest blend I’ve ever seen. Soft and flowery taste. It’s almost like a glazed lemon loaf. Probably the only Butiki tea I will ever get to try.

Flavors: Almond, Cake, Floral, Frosting, Hot hay, Lemongrass

180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

I’m glad you liked it! I don’t know what the heck was with the oil though. I’m very sorry to all the tea fans who didn’t get to try many Butiki teas. I’m very grateful I knew about Butiki back when they were available… I’m still amazed at the Butiki magic after all these years.


It was surprisingly good with so many years behind it. I get the feeling it would’ve been more cookie/cake and straight lemon-tasting (I was getting lemongrass) when really fresh. Thanks so much for sharing a part of Steepster past with me <3


I love this one, one of my all-time Butiki faves. I only have one cup left and I don’t want it to go! ): I’m on a hunt to find something similar and haven’t even come close, so far.

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Squeaky clean tea! The floral and vegetal flavors are in great balance with the overall profile leaning toward bright citrusy tones, sugarcane sweetness, alpine air and cooling fir/pine. Balanced body, minerality and astringency, some returning sweetness. In each session, I’ve brewed the leaf with longer steep times, something like 30/20/20/25/30/45/60/etc and it doesn’t want to give up. The tea is consistent; it isn’t highly complex nor does it have a lasting aftertaste but it does shine in its balance and longevity.

Flavors: Butter, Citrusy, Cookie, Fir, Floral, Flowers, Garden Peas, Gardenias, Grass Seed, Lemon, Lemongrass, Mineral, Peach, Pine, Plant Stems, Spinach, Sugarcane, Sweet, Vanilla

200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Martin Bednář

Tea no. 50 in my wishlist! Citrusy, alpine air and coniferous trees sounds appealing to me.

So Keta

Sounds pretty good actually, interesting profile.

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This blend of wild purple black tea and lapsang souchong has a character that is deliberate —purposefully rustic yet refined. It reminds me of a gentleman from a world forgotten sitting in leather saddle in command of his horse. The lapsang souchong pulls the reigns on the wild purple black tea’s unrestrained energy and guides it into a respectable trot. There is a full flavor and body in the sip followed by cleansing tannins on the swallow but it seemingly cannot be oversteeped. Intriguing, buoyant mix of flavors with campfire, jerky, leather, wildberries and muscatel, dry grass, cocoa/cocoa butter and lemon-citrus. There’s certainly a lot I’m missing, like once I think I have a grasp on a certain flavor, it gets pulled back into the fold. The smokiness is moderate. It feels like that found in wild teas, rather than a heavily smoked lapsang souchong. The aftertaste lingers and I think that is where my imagination begins to unfold.

I like when a tea can both prod at my mind’s eye and be a functional, energetic brew.

Flavors: Berries, Campfire, Camphor, Citrus, Cocoa, Dry Grass, Leather, Lemon, Meat, Mineral, Muscatel, Nectar, Oak wood, Rose, Tannin

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML

Memory fails me so I don’t have a name handy, but it sounds like you are describing the very easy-on-the-eyes buckskin guy from “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman!”


Gmathis – I don’t know his name but I know exactly of whom you speak!


Sully? The main reason my stepmom watched the show.


Interesting, I saw the Lapsang as the horse…


Just googled the guy and I may start watching that show :’D


My Steeper email is very wishywashy but just wanted to thank you for the gift! I love a great matcha. <3

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drank Sleepytime by Celestial Seasonings
667 tasting notes

Somebody got her work father drinking Sleepytime every night.

This stuff is great when fresh. It’s predominantly spearmint and lemongrass, two ingredients I don’t care for in combination but when combined with linden, chamomile , rose and orange blossom, creates a soothing balance. There is a modest spearmint and blackberry leaf sweetness if the bag is taken out in a timely fashion. Otherwise the lemongrass dominates and a drying quality develops when the bag is left in the mug until last sip.

Boiling 10 OZ / 295 ML

Hi there! Don’t think I’ve tried that one, sounds good.


The Sleepytime Vanilla is a go-to bedtime option for me. Surprisingly good for a bagged tea.


Yay for converting non-tea-drinkers into believers! One step at a time, haha ^^


It’s a good standard for the uninitiated; however, I’ve never had any luck with the “sleepy” claims. I have to be knocked out with a hammer :)


Woot! Woot!


gmathis, it’s nice for winding down but def not a sleep aid.
Leafhopper: I really enjoy Sleepytime Vanilla, more so during the winter.


Todd, I picked up a box from Sprouts on sale last week if you’re near one.


Nice! I don’t know if we have one around Boulder Creek or not.

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drank 2018 Snoozefest by White2Tea
667 tasting notes

Lazy, so copying my post from the pu-erh of the day thread, with a few modifications.

Still early into it (ended up not brewing it out). I can’t smell anything right now, so no idea about aroma. Full sweet flavor and body, oily, cooling in throat, brassy metallic, plenty of green bitterness like dandelion greens, some astringency and huigan, Not picking up an aftertaste. It reminds me of the 2018 Flapjacks raw mixed with a drop of strawberry preserves. Fairly smooth, eye-opening caffeination.

I’ve never tried to purchase this cake since I don’t tend to hop on hype sales. From what I know, this goes for a low price and it’s probably worth it for those that like an initial hit of syrupy sweentness with subsequent bitter brews. So thanks, Togo, for providing me the opportunity to try one of the Snoozefest pressings :)

Flavors: Apricot, Astringent, Bitter, Butter, Dandelion, Flowers, Grass, Green Beans, Herbs, Honey, Jam, Metallic, Mushrooms, Nutty, Pancake Syrup, Stonefruits, Strawberry, Sweet

Boiling 8 g 4 OZ / 110 ML

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2018 EoT Wuliang Wild brewed in a clay gaiwan. Light and refined woody ‘wildfruit’ and grassy pear taste with no smoke or bitterness. Active in the mouth with tangy minerality and drying/mouth-watering qualities. I can feel it going down. The straw-like astringency grows stronger and leaves a pleasant bite in the throat. Kind of nutty/mushroomy/very light iodine aftertaste. Camphor and mild returning sweetness are quick to show. Beautiful floral aroma — don’t forget to smell the lid.

This is a wild tea with a more ephemeral, contemplative almost oolong feel than the aggressive nature of others I’ve tried. That chest-forward energy is there, though; gonna say it’s not suitable as a night-time brew. I’m happy with this tea even if it is short-lived.

Edit: I oversteeped several cups and it still turned out lovely with only a mild background bitterness. I do want to compare brewing the leaf in a porcelain pot and again in the gaiwan with longer infusions. This tea seems like it has wiggle room.

Flavors: Berries, Camphor, Drying, Flowers, Fruity, Grass, Iodine, Mineral, Mushrooms, Nuts, Pear, Smooth, Straw, Tangy, Wet Wood, Wood

Boiling 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

I broke my Yixing gaiwan, think I’ll buy a new one. That doesn’t count as breaking my no-buy, right?


You might have to look elsewhere for justification. My lips are sealed (around this Yixing cup that partners with the gaiwan).


Lmao, that’s cold.


Oof, sorry! :$ Really, though, I love this thing: https://yunnansourcing.com/products/yixing-purple-clay-easy-gaiwan-and-cup-set

It’s cheap.


I’ve never had a gaiwan with a pouring lip! Taking note – I’ve favourited the page so I can make my way back to it when the time comes to buy more tea (: Yunnan Sourcing is going to be one of the first companies I place an order with when I can, so hopefully I can stay patient enough to wait until then!

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It’s been 2 weeks since I’ve temporarily switched residence. My new tea station is at the kitchen table (as opposed to my bedroom/teacave) and I’m living with 2 people, so I’m drinking tea more socially than at home. Neither of them appreciates tea, though, beyond the odd teabag. I’ve offered but you know. Anyway, I haven’t been focusing on the tea too much since I’m usually chatting.

Overall impression of this Alishan — holy creamy, pungent bulb flowers and grass, later peach gummi rings. Very forward. Body vacillates between full and thin, possibly as a result of the leaves not having enough room to fully and evenly expand in the pot. Some minerality. Steeps forever. Acidity like green apple comes out in late steeps, along with rough astringency. With my first go at this tea, I was unable to brew it out so the leaves went into a jar in the fridge for cold-brew. Really pleasant result there.

I received this tea in place of something else I ordered. I neglected to rectify the situation out of pure laziness. Not unhappy with the accidental swap but it’s also not something I’d go out of my way to order. While I like puerh and black tea with forward personalities, I favor nuance in Taiwanese oolong.

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Tea habits:

Among my favorites are all teas Nepali, sheng puerh, Wuyi yancha, Taiwanese oolong, a variety of black (red) teas from all over, herbal tisanes. I keep a few green and white teas on hand. Shou puerh is a cold weather brew. Tiny teapots and gaiwans are my usual brewing vessels when not preparing morning cups western style and pouring into my work thermos. Friend of teabags.


Sonoma County, California, USA

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