91
drank Da Hong Pao (2015) by Old Ways Tea
594 tasting notes

I took notes for about half this session then came to visit this tea’s page. Upon reading eastkyteaguys’s note, I realize I have nothing new to add. His review is very comprehensive as usual. I find this tea very aromatic and tasty, much like eating a lightly spiced dark chocolate bar with walnuts, caramel and red fruits while sitting on a boulder in a cedar forest. It induces a very calming, reflective and open energy. Love me some well-blended Da Hong Pao. Good news: according to Old Ways Tea’s website this tea will be restocked. Give it a try. It’s good.

Addendum: Simmering the spent leaves produces a mellow, woody and nutty cup.

Don’t read below this if you don’t want to read some rambling.

So glad to be leaving San Francisco. Too much hustle. Since the mothership landed in California almost 9 years ago, I’ve made a continual northward migration. Hopefully I will end up at my school of choice next fall which is still higher in latitude than where I will be moving. I live in a neighborhood that highlights the economic disparity of this city, adjacent to both the government center and high-end international retail shopping. A lot of rough times here. We have our problems with drug use and open-air dealing, serious mental illness, lack of bathroom facilities for the homeless and car break-ins but I have come to love the grit of this neighborhood. It does have its charms. My building is full of immigrant families and long-time residents who have been so kind and respectful in my 5 years’ stay here. I find some of the denizens of this neighborhood less fortunate than myself to be charming human beings who have simply fallen on hard times. People are watching your back for you here, though honestly, with some learned awareness, I never feel unsafe. I’ve had philosophical conversations on the street with people high on crack. I’ve given random hugs, helped handicapped people cross the street, covered up people with a hoodie or blanket if they were passed out on the sidewalk, called 911 on people who have overdosed. Last Christmas, a homeless services agency was handing out gift bags and as I was walking by, the recipients pulled me into their group for a random photo and cheer. The things I talk about are not about me taking pride in my acts but rather they’re me reflecting that I’m not the only one doing these things. There’s a lot of really ugly shit going down here but also a lot of kind-hearted people trying to keep it from getting worse. It’s been a good stay here but the strife has definitely taken its toll on my psyche. I yearn for less hustle, easier access to nature and a place where I can let my cat outside (she deserves it, good old girl).

What I find crazy is that I gave my notice to vacate a week ago and already yesterday somebody put in an application on my apartment without even viewing it. There will also be an open house tomorrow. Finding housing in this city is no joke.

Please forgive my rambling. Some teas make me do that.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 8 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Togo

I think only through hardship, people’s character comes to the surface. There’s also a strange and deep connection one builds with others when collaborating with others to solve real world (you could say existential) problems. It’s so worth it, and I think instrumental from an evolutionary perspective.

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Comments

Togo

I think only through hardship, people’s character comes to the surface. There’s also a strange and deep connection one builds with others when collaborating with others to solve real world (you could say existential) problems. It’s so worth it, and I think instrumental from an evolutionary perspective.

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Profile

Bio

Always up for a trade. I keep an updated cupboard. Check it out. Don’t be shy — message me if you want to try something! I send international :)

Most enjoyment:

Wuyi and Taiwanese oolong, sheng puerh, Yunnan and Wuyi blacks, GABA oolong. I also appreciate Japanese, Vietnamese, Thai, Darjeeling and Nepali teas, bagged tea and herbal teas/tisanes.

I take my teas without milks or sweeteners except sometimes chai and the rare London Fog, matcha latte and golden milk.

I’ll try anything once because it helps me learn. Not opposed to well placed herbs, flowers, fruity bits and flavorings, just nothing cloying. And no added sugars, sweeteners, candy or chocolate.

I abandoned both my preference reference and the recording of detailed steeping parameters in January 2020, favoring a focus on qualitative descriptions. At this point, I am still comfortable toggling the “Not/Recommended” button.

Preference reference:

100-90: A tea I can lose myself into. Something about it makes me slow down and appreciate not only the tea but all of life or a moment in time. If it’s a bagged or herbal tea, it’s of standout quality in comparison to similar items.
89-80: Fits my profile well enough to buy again. Some could be daily drinker teas.
79-70: Not a preferred tea. I might buy more or try a different harvest. Would gladly have a cup if offered.
69-60: Not necessarily a bad tea but one that I won’t buy again. Would have a cup if offered.
59-1: Lacking several elements, strangely clunky, possess off flavors/aroma/texture or something about it makes me not want to finish.
Unrated: Haven’t made up my mind or some other reason. If it’s puerh, I likely think it needs more age.

Location

Sonoma County, California, USA

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