This is also backlogging…from a couple of weeks ago.
My first Big Red Robe, and a free sample that Garret so kindly included in the box with my new yixing teapot. (It’s beautiful, by the way! I haven’t decided what to dedicate it to yet, but I’m thinking an oolong of some sort.) This is a perfect tea morning…
Anyway, I’m figuring out gongfu style, so I decided to try that too. Steeped 1.5 tsp in a little 4 oz ceramic cup that I just got from an artist friend, rinsed the leaves for about 10 sec, poured out the water, holding the leaves back with a fork (because I’m classy). I started the 1st steeping below with 30 sec, about 205 degree water, and added about 10 sec each steep.
1st steeping: I’m getting a mineral-y quality here…very smooth, with a hint of metallic texture.
2nd steeping: Mmm. Wow. This is sweet and smooth, and I taste something that I can only describe as caramel. This is delicious…can’t wait for the next steeping.
I’m not ready to rate it yet, but I’ll try it again to familiarize myself with it better so I can accurately rate it. Very nice!

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I’m a college tea drinker.
I cook feverishly.
I draw.
I make movies.
I knit.
Someday I wish to own chickens.

I love tea because of the complete sensory experience it offers me. Clock time fades away as I lean into my cup, watching the delicate cascades of steam waft up from the brew. Peace. Stillness. Feeling centered. It’s my meditation…

To give you a little background on my tea preferences (which will put my ratings into perspective)…

I love teas that are strong without bitterness and have earthy flavors to them, like rooibos or a really good black tea. (A few favorites in this category: Toffee Almond Supreme, Popped Rooibos, Oh Canada, Nutcracker Sweet.) Vanilla, cinnamon, and nutty are some of my favorite flavor notes. After about a year of warming up to greens, I absolutely love them—from the sweet, nutty, green-tea-ice-cream-like to the bold, grassy earthiness of Gunpowder Temple of Heaven. I also enjoy a nice white every once in a while. Fruity teas aren’t my favorite. I do have a few fruity teas that I love though, like TeaSource’s Green Tea with Pomegranate, Lemon Solstice, and Blueberry Fields.

I drink all of my teas unsweetened; if a tea needs sweetening, I usually don’t like it. A couple of notable exceptions: I sometimes sweeten straight green teas and matcha, and I drink my chai with soymilk (but no other sweetener). I sometimes like my black tea with a little dollop of soymilk.


Northfield, MN

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