2189 Tasting Notes
I tried to post this earlier but then Steepster came to a crashing halt. This morning was another eaaaarly morning, and I was craving rose. For some reason I feel like I don’t have enough rosey black teas in my stash right now, but that will change as soon as my Harney order arrives.
Luckily I still have this one, which is nice and rosey and includes a lovely passion fruit flavor. This is definitely one I would consider reordering from the Tea Palace, even though they are in London!
This is my last sachet of this tea, which I found while reorganizing my tea shelf at home. I have a pile of decaf and herbal teas here at home that I never get around to drinking, so I am going to attempt to do so in the evenings so I can reduce that stash as well.
This is a nice vanilla, and something about the decaffination process makes this tea impossible to oversteep it seems like. It does tend toward weakness, to my taste, so I do feel a need to steep it for a while. But it’s definitely pleasant, anyway.
This tea company is a small outfit located in my new town of residence. I have seen their booth at the farmers market for a few weeks now but I always assumed they had only herbal teas, and thus I wasn’t too interested. But I stopped by the other day and notice that they had a tin of this tea, which I immediately wanted to pick up because it is rose and Earl Grey. Even though my boyfriend objected based on the fact that is named after a rival Big Ten team (his alma mater was Big Ten).
It smelled nice and bergamotty, with a hint of sweet rose. After brewing the base tea came out and smelled pretty good… like a nice Chinese base, I’m guessing Keemun. Unfortunately although this tea was pretty tasty to drink, because the base is indeed a nice Chinese tea or tea blend, there isn’t nearly enough bergamot OR rose in this for me. I will probably up the leaf and see if I can improve it, because it was a little weak overall anyway.
Thanks to David and the awesome folks at Verdant I got my January Reserve club tea shipment despite the address mix-up. I have been waiting until the weekend so that I could devote some time to these teas, and here it is. I decided to go with this one first.
The dry leaf is long and twisted dark strands, definitely beautiful. I put my 6g into my 6oz teapot and exhaled into it then breathed in to get a good aroma. The smell I have come to associate with dancong was there (roasted grains, wet minerals), but also an intense fruitiness. I thought apricot at first, and then I read David’s description and lychee fits as well. I could smell this for a while! But I did a quick rinse (as fast as I can pour the water in and out) and then a short 4 second steep.
The flavor was primarily fruity, with the lychee very prominent, with a kind of roasted cinnamon in the background. I got a sense of juiciness, and a slight tingling sensation in my mouth that lingered long afte the sip. The next few steeps were less fruity and more minerally, and with growing florals. A little later some of the fruity notes returned, this time accompanied by hints of cacao.
Definitely a real experience. Did this tea blow my mind? No, but I don’t tend to be super into dancongs. The fact that I enjoyed it as much as I did really says a lot for this tea. I’m glad I got to experience this one!
This tea came in a swap package from Tea Sipper that I got just before I moved, and promptly forgot about until just now. Sorry about that! But I found the package and now I have a lot more teas to try. :)
I have had at least one tea from Simpson & Vail that I liked and I have wanted to try more, but I haven’t ever gotten around to ordering from them so I usually take the opportunity to request samples in swaps. This one sounded delicious. The aroma of the steeped tea is interesting, and it reminds me of an unflavored nice black. After all, chocolate and cinnamon are common flavors in those types of teas.
Flavor is quite nice, with strong chocolate notes that are both unsweetened cocoa powder type and that bakey brownie type as well. The cinnamon isn’t strong, but it a pleasantly spiced background note. There is the tiniest hint of bitterness so I will try to steep it at a slightly cooler temp last time. This is a tasty tea, but then again it is also not all that different from a really nice unflavored black, and I would probably just drink one of those instead if I wanted. I suppose this could be a cheaper alternative if necessary!
Nearly done with this one… only a few more cups left. While I am planning an order to Dammann (free shipping over what comes out to $58), but this one won’t be a restock. Not that it’s not a tasty tea, it’s actually a very tasty tea. But it’s very similar to Harney’s Florence, and if I’m going to buy a pile of teas from Paris I’m going to choose ones that I either love or haven’t tried yet. Also for whatever reason although I do enjoy the flavors, I rarely find myself craving chocolate hazelnut tea.
Of course, as if to prove to me how good it is, this tea is really tasty this morning. Chocolatey and nutty and almost sweet. Really quite delicious. I have also really come to love Dammann’s black tea base, which is present in all of their flavored teas and has great flavor itself. Well, now I just want to make that order sooner. :P
Wow, I just had the mid-afternoon doldrums hit me hard. I feel like falling asleep. I am also feeling a weird sense of being over-tea’d, like I have drunk too many cups, but I think it’s mostly that I have had only green teas (or similar) today so far which is unusual for me. Hopefully this tea wil help pull me out of my funk.
I wanted a black tea that was rich and either nutty or spicy, and this one seemed like it would fit the bill. Yeah, it’s definitely helping. Pumpkiny and a bit spicy, I do really enjoy this tea. If it was on a slightly more impressive base, it would be one of my favorite teas.
I drank a cup of this with lunch today, and it was quite tasty. Nutty and buttery and so not a boring grassy green tea. I almost oversteeped it but it suffered no ill effects. I really enjoy having a tea like this with my lunch… it almost serves to make everything else taste better as well.
ETA: Apparently this tea is almost a year old, but it still tastes great. Guess its aging pretty well even for a green tea.
Yet another sample that comes to me thanks to Azzrian! I have sampled guyusa at a tea festival before, but I’ve never had a whole cup of it. It intrigues me, so I was glad that Azzrian included this one in our swap!
I cannot believe that this thing steeps for 6 minutes, but I did it, even though it goes against all my instincts. It smells like citrus and, well, guyusa, which I know isn’t helpful but its hard for me to describe. Kind of a tad leafy-twiggy, but in a good way. The flavor is quite nice… lemon and cream, with enough guyusa to bring it down to earth. I am definitely enjoying this one, and I hope it energizes me like its supposed to!
This sample once again comes to me thanks to Alphakitty!
I am not the biggest white tea person. It’s not that I don’t enjoy them when I have them, because I often do, it’s just that I rarely seek them out. Nonetheless I requested this one from Alphakitty because although I have had Earl Grey white teas before, I’ve never had an Earl Grey cream white tea. Sounded interesting!
I don’t have much of a default steep time for white teas, so I guessed on this one. I have a feeling I should have steeped it a little longer for optimal flavor. As it is, it’s pretty tasty. It definitely smells like an Earl Grey cream, though obviously without the black tea notes. The bergamot is pretty light, and I would probably like more in the blend, but it is overall creamy and vanilla-y. The white tea base is smooth and not too hay-ish or grassy. A pretty nice tea.