3229 Tasting Notes
Well, I think I’ve figured out what I’ve been doing incorrectly with this tea – using boiling water! Whoops. Sadly, I figured that out AFTER making said mistake today.
And my stomach is feeling all sorts of not good, so this tea (and the others I brought with me) are not sitting well. Nor is anything else, for that matter. Bleeehhhhhh.
It is decidedly NOT RIGHT that it is raining in the middle of January! So much for skating on my birthday this weekend.
Anyways, SIPDOWN WOOOOOOO! Used up the last of this sample from momo (thankyou!) because strangely, I’ve been craving it for a while. The first time I tried this, I remember not having a clue if it tasted true to the name or not. However, since then, I’ve actually drank a Fuzzy Navel! And I’ve gotta say that it’s pretty deliciously accurate! Citrusy-peachy on a quite nice green base. Yums. I’m drinking this cold right now (it has been sitting next to my bed for hours while I have been spending hours working on stats… and then it continued to sit there when I discovered a really awesome error that meant I had just wasted 3 hours of effort…). But anyways, the point of saying that I’m drinking it cold is that I think it’s a FABULOUS iced tea! Frank, perhaps this would be a good one to bring back for iced teas next year?? Although, with the green base please, not a black one.
So although I recently picked up 1 oz. of this, I left the majority of it with my mom over Christmas. Unfortunately, it seems I left myself with mostly flavouring (little tasty flowerbuds) and tea crumbs, and barely any actual tea. Very literally, my teaspoon pulled out what looked like dust from the bag (well, half dust and half flowerbuds and oolong balls) :( On the plus side, it does still seem to be pretty delicious, but a bit of the oolonginess is missing. It’s weird, because I don’t remember there being a bunch of dust and such at the bottom of my first bag of this (and now I’m a bit concerned that I took all the buds and left my mom with just oolong??)
Oh well! I guess I will just have to buy another half ounce for myself in my next order. Shucks…
Thanks to Zen Tea for a sample of this tasty-sounding tea!
Another tea I’m a bit apprehensive to try due to mixed reviews, but here goes nothing! The tea from the packet smells tasty enough… sure, the flavouring smells artificial, but sometimes that works. I’m not opposed to artificial flavouring if it tastes good! :D It does smell nutty to me, with vanilla undertones. So far so good!
After a couple sips, I have to say that the flavouring is working for me more than it did for most, I think. I’m tasting a lingering nuttiness and some delicious sweetness. I’m having trouble picking out the oolong, but it’s certainly a better choice than a black base, in my opinion. There is definitely an artificial taste going on here, but it’s not a huuuuge problem for me (ok, until I got a sip that was very artificial-tasting).
All in all, probably a pretty decent tea for tea newbs, but a touch too artificial for me. I do still like it enough that I’ll finish it, but I probably wouldn’t purchase more.
ETA: Second infusion had somewhat of a bitter note. Although I drank the infusion, I did discard the leaves.
So, I was pretty apprehensive about brewing this tea up as I’d seen (I thought) a few notes about people not being big fans, or about it being quite strong/bitter, etc., but this doesn’t seem to be a problem for me! I was cautious and used about 1.5 tsp in boiling water for 1 minute (the low end of the given parameters, which were 1-2 tsp for 1-2 minutes… I think…) The aroma was reminiscent of Laoshan Black with chocolatey notes, but it’s definitely not quite as intense, and the flavour fits perfectly with this, being chocolatey and malty but less so than Laoshan Black, but also with a bit of… hay-y flavour, aka that flavour that I attribute to bagged blacks. I’d be tempted to call it “Laoshan Black Light” or something to that effect, as that’s how it’s coming off to me.
I’m happy to have an ounce of this added to my collection – it will help tide me over until the 2 oz. of Laoshan Black that I ordered last night arrives! (Also, it’s neat to have tried another tea with a cool story behind it!)
ETA: Second infusion (2 min) still has chocolatey notes, and more of that “classic black” flavour. Still pretty decent. I’m wavering on going for a third infusion though… getting awfully sick of reinfusing things, haha (I’m sure it would hold up for one more though).
Hmm, perhaps I should have saved that lapsang souchong for last…
Anyways, brewed this sample from Stacy at Butiki up tonight for fear that it would lose its grapefruity flavour… WOW! Definitely not! This tastes like straight up grapefruit juice, alongside a delicious and delicate green. Dragonwell is the perfect base here! Funnily enough, this is making my tongue tingle just like sour grapefruit juice does! Neat!
Grapefruit isn’t reeaaallly my thing, but this is a fabulously done grapefruit green, in my opinion! Another bang on tea!
ETA: So, the second infusion (same parameters, less water) was pretty darn delicious. So much real grapefruit flavour; I can’t get over it! Third infusion, today, still is grapefruity (which is crazy for most flavoured teas, but typical of Butiki’s!), but there’s a bit of a weird flavour lurking in the background. I suspect that that’s more likely due to the length of time the leaves have been sitting than the tea itself… so even though there was still a grapefruity aroma to the leaves, I threw them out. So, so glad I got to sample this one! IMO this would be a perfect substitute for a grapefruit juice addict trying to cut down on calorie-laden juice.
Yikes!! My tasting note is certainly going to pale in comparison to the two that preceded it!
I was feeling like something interesting and on the “heavier” side tonight, so chose to brew up this tea. I like lapsang souchong in moderation (and particularly with milk), but who knows what this one will be like (well, a couple people do. But not me!)
The aroma of this tea is like smoked meat. Beef jerky. Campfire. It’s quite strong, and to my untrained nose, smells much like any lapsang souchong.
The flavour, however, is where it differs from other lapsangs I’ve tried. The smoke is unbelievably smooth here, no astringency, no sharp bite at all. In fact, the tea finishes with a surprising sweetness! I used about 2 tsp of leaf for 8 oz. of water, and am surprised at how delicious this is! It definitely doesn’t require any additions, although I’m certain it would hold up to them.
Hopefully I can get in a few more infusions tomorrow!
ETA: Second infusion, a couple minutes. This is truly unlike any lapsang I’ve previously tried. The smoke is still heavy in the second infusion, but there’s this amazing sweetness to it, and I can really taste the black tea underneath it. I have to admit that although this is a neat experience, I really can’t see myself ever really selecting such a tea to drink just on a whim (or if I did, I’d be dosing it with sweetener and milk and these nuances would be lost).
Thought I’d try a couple new teas tonight. I may regret this, as it’s “lights out” in like 11 minutes…
Anyways! This was one of the lucky winners. I’ve been super curious, so into the infuser it went! The floral-y/citrusy aroma is oddly familiar (can’t say I know what either saffron or frankincense smells like, so I’m not sure if it’s that), but underneath the familiar aroma is definitely Verdant’s distinctive tieguanyin. The flavour is much the same – a solid base of the vegetal, delicious oolong overlaid with citrusy and floral notes. I was going to mention that I wasn’t really getting bergamot in here, so it wasn’t really working as an “earl something” for me, but I see that there is no bergamot – the citrus is orange peel! I think I personally prefer this choice of citrus, and am finding that it compliments the oolong very well. The jasmine is likely providing the floral note that I’m picking up, but I love that it has been so delicately used such as to not overpower everything else. (Now that I read there’s jasmine in here, I imagine that the familiarity in aroma may have been in part attributed to it.)
I am really enjoying this blend – all of the different elements are making it quite a treat to drink, and I have to say that I could see myself preferring this to a straight tieguanyin just because it’s so interesting, yet retains the strong oolong character.
Great tea for tonight!
ETA: Second infusion (didn’t pay attention to parameters) is super strong today! It probably got around 3 mins, and the aroma is definitely of jasmine, and the orange peel is still a prominent flavour, along with what’s likely the frankincense? Either way, it could stand to be a bit more dilute, but it’s quite delicious. Can still taste the oolong as well. Mmmmm.
ETA again: This tea does not quit! There is still a ton of flavour on infusion 3 (lovely orange, light oolong, probably frankincense, less jasmine). Delicious. Also, I noted waxy stuff on the bottom of my last cup – must be that the frankincense melted and sank to the bottom during the infusion. I opted to use a metal infuser in case wax got on it that I needed to clean… I guess I’ll see how it fared after another few infusions!