drank Bailin Gongfu Black Tea by Teavivre
119 tasting notes


The first is that my first post on my TeaTrade blog is up. The blog can be found here http://serendipitea.teatra.de/. I explain more in depth there what I aim to do. Please take a click and tell me what you think!

The second (okay so there were really only two things) is that I’ve made the decision to stop rating teas. I know of only one other user who does this (JacquelineM) but I’m doing it for a slightly different reason than she does it (though her reason does come in to play a little). The main reason is that rating a tea means that all of the work I put in to making a review culminates to me making a rating that says if I like it or dislike it. Compared to many here, I’m very new to the premium and loose leaf tea scene. The goal of me having an account here on Steepster is for me to me able to explore new teas and learn as well as review the new things that I’ve tried. I feel like if I spend a whole review listing what I taste only to culminate it in me rating it on if I like it or not, I’m not really growing. I want to review every tea I try purely by how it tastes, and not by if I like it or not. I want to go into my review unbiased and focus simply on the liquid in my mouth from a standpoint that is as unbiased as possible. I feel like that will help me grow in my knowledge of teas more than rating a tea on a like-based scale. Once I feel like I’ve tried enough teas and taken my palette to a place that I feel comfortable that I’m at the peak of my journey, I will perhaps start rating teas again. But until then, I’m going to go without rating teas.

So, now that all of this has been said, onto the tea! This is a backlog from yesterday. Another sample that Teavivre sent me!

I was so excited to try this tea. I mean like. REALLY. Excited. I mean come on, it’s the highest rated tea on the site, how could I not be?!

So, trying to keep my excitement to a low, I opened this one up. The dry leaf smells a lot like bread. In a really yummy, toasty way.

The wet leaf and tea itself smell a lot like fresh baked bread. In a way that really entices you. The tea itself is wonderful. It’s very strong and certainly not light, even with only being steeped for 2 and a half minutes! It too tastes like toasty, warm, fresh baked bread. It practically screams bakery! It’s so wonderful. Even as it cooled it retains its boldness, as a certain caramel-y note (not too sweet) comes out. It’s almost like a savory caramel-like a salted one that has a little too much salt, but in a good way. It tastes…… toasty. This, again, is hard for me to put into words, but the best I can say is bread! A wonderful tea, and I can see why it’s the top! This is definitely going into my repurchase list!

190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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I’m Ian and I’m a 15 year old student who lives in Vermont. I started (heavily) drinking tea in Late 2010 and have been obsessed ever since!

I tend to drink more black and herbal teas, though I do enjoy oolong, green, and white, and I’m exploring other facets of the tea world (I’m still trying with pu-erh!)

I tend to lean towards sweeter and fruity flavors in my teas, and I’m not a big fan of smoky flavored teas, or anything that’s VERY bold.

I also enjoy a cup of coffee every once and a while, though it does mess with my stomach sometimes so I don’t drink it as often as I drink tea.

In addition to tea drinking, I’m also really interested in:
Classical music (I’ve been playing clarinet for 5 years now and it’s my favorite thing to do), independent arts/music, education on environmental sustainability, reading, Fair Trade and safe-trade practices, Cognitive science, art history, and a lot more.

I’m open to swaps, but I don’t have a very wide collection. Regardless, if I review a tea and you would like a sample, feel free to message me and we can work something out! If you would like to just try something without a swap, feel free to ask too! I know that I personally don’t have a lot of teas to swap and if you’re in the same position as me just feel free to ask for a sample and I’ll send you some, no strings attached!

I run a blog on TeaTrade which you can find here: http://serendipitea.teatra.de/. The goal of my blog is to better connect tea with the arts and go beyond just the taste aspect of tea. Enjoy!





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