Featured & New Tasting Notes

90

Not sure how this compares to last year’s tea but this one is good. There is a light malty note along with a certain nutty flavor and some chocolate notes. This is definitely one of my favorite black teas.

I brewed this one time with 4 pearls or about 3 tsp leaf and 200 degree water in a 16oz Teavana Glass Perfect Tea Maker/Gravity Steeper for 3 minutes.

Flavors: Chocolate, Malt, Nutty

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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85

Got this yesterday. It is pretty nice. It has a malty note and I would say a chocolate note. Can’t say that it is better or worse than last year’s tea.

I brewed this one time in a Teavana Glass Perfect Tea Maker/Gravity Steeper with 3 tsp leaf and 200 degree water for 3 minutes.

Flavors: Chocolate, Malt

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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Buttery, custard-like, and a wee bit tart. Vegetal with the slightest whiff of coconut in the second steep, or am I dreaming that up?
My tastebuds may be clouded with vanilla chocolate.

Subsequent steeps ensured that no, I was not dreaming up the coconut. It’s there with the butter and the vegetal nature of the tea. Six or seven steeps later, it’s all still there. Gently, gently, but there.

This may be my first experience with tea from Chiang Rai, Thailand. I do so wish that I had had enthusiasm for tea exploration when I was there. Yeah, nope. No recollection of tea drinking adventures there. At all.

Fjellrev

Did you enjoy that flavour combination, vegetal and tart notes with custard?

Evol Ving Ness

The tartness and vegetal natures were gentle enough to let the custard butter shine. That worked.

Fjellrev

Ah ok, cool beans.

ashmanra

I’ve been listening to this song a lot lately! Are you guys old enough to remember it?

Evol Ving Ness

I am. The tea and the song don’t seem to have anything in common from my perspective.

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86

I bought a bunch of Tieguanyin samples and then opted for this as a smaller free sample, which is too bad because I’d take an Ali Shan over a Tieguanyin any day of the week (and I have so many Tieguanyin packs). Oh, well. That’s what this mass oolong drinking marathon is all about; getting my priorities straight!

I have two cups of this on the go: one is a gongfu style (+10sec) and the other is a “western” 1-2min steep at +200F. Both get a rinse, as usual.

Both cups emit a delicious concoction of vanilla, flowers, grass, corn husk, and even a hint of jam. The first cups are sweet, creamy, with notes of corn and jam. I taste a bit of coconut too. A butter note acts as a thickener to the broth, and make this a rich cup. Grass is, thankfully, not the distinctive force it’s been in some of the other green oolongs I’ve had of late; the vegetal notes are more distinctive in the western cup.

Anyways, there are lots of great notes on this tea, so I’m going to do the lazy thing and not ramble on about each individual steep.

Steep Count: 3 (x2) (ongoing)

(2016 harvest)

Flavors: Butter, Coconut, Corn Husk, Cream, Floral, Grass, Jam, Kale, Vanilla

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C
Evol Ving Ness

I am confused. Did you get the Ali Shan or the Tieguanyin? And why is it too bad that you got the Ali Shan if you prefer it over the other?

teepland

Sounds like a good problem to have—a free sample of your preferred choice of Oolong!

CrowKettle

Sorry, brain was half asleep with this note.

When you order from Teavivre you can buy a sample size (two 5-7g packets). Depending on how much you spend you may qualify for 1-3 free samples, but you only get one 5g pack, instead of two.

I ended up buying a lot of tieguanyin samples (different types, 5gx2), and picked this as free sample. That’s what I regret XD

teepland

Ah—got it. Yeah, I can see how that is disappointing, but in the end, at least there was one free sample of your favorite, right? The teacup is half-full…! ;)

CrowKettle

Yeah, as far as personal tea problems go, having lots of tieguanyin and not enough ali shan is still half a luxury :)

Daylon R Thomas

I have too many Four Seasons varietal oolongs including my BaoZhongs, and not enough Li Shan. I’ve had the Tie Guan Yin struggle before…never mind that was once my favorite type of oolong. I hope that I can get them sold. Here’s my pitch: I do have to say that the 5 oz of Winter Rhytmn I have does compare to several Ali Shans in terms of its notes. It’s not quite as sweet or honeyed as some Alishans can be, but it is certainly just as creamy with an unusually strong vanilla note.

Daylon R Thomas

You don’t have to take me up on it, but if you know someone looking for a good quality daily green oolong, it is probably one of the best examples of one.

Evol Ving Ness

Thank you for unpacking that, CrowKettle. So next time, you will be getting sample sizes of Ali Shan and a free sample of the Tieguanyin then?

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Cup Scent: butter, toasted nuts, flowers, savoury seaweed sprinkles (subtle)

To taste, it follows the precedent set by the scent, making for a savoury cup full of cream, butter, nuts, and gentle flowers. It’s probably the most mild “Jin Xuan,” natural or scented, I’ve had in recent times. It’s nothing special in my books, but it’s buttery-cream profile makes for a comforting cup, with excellent steep value.

I drank up all my other Jin Xuans, so it’s nice to discover I have some left. I didn’t realize what this was or pay too much attention when I initially placed an order online. It took seeing the unfurled leaves to realize what this was. Whoops.

Steep Count: 6

Florals reminiscent of dandelion came out strong on the third steep. It reminds me that dandelion wine is on my “too try” list.

(2016 harvest)

Flavors: Butter, Cream, Dandelion, Floral, Roasted nuts, Vegetal

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 tsp 4 OZ / 118 ML
Fjellrev

Word, dandelion wine has been on my list too. Makes me want to snag some Fentimans Dandelion & Burdock now.

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80

I spent a good part of yesterday at a silent meditation retreat in the city. This is the tea that I picked as the first one of the day to set me in motion. The rest of the day I spent with various oolongs.

My experience with 52Teas berried black teas has been that there hasn’t been enough berry. 52Teas appears to be remedying this issue here with this tea. Hurray for the tea to berry balance! The raspberry flavour is true and real and comes through with good proportion to the lovely black base.

Even though I had given the bag a good shake to distribute all things, I am not really detecting the piquant element here. Even if I squint.

Maybe the next cup or the one after that will be the spicy one.

I have considered that a bit of cream here would not go amiss. And vanilla cream, even better.

That said, a very enjoyable cup, nonetheless. I am starting this day off with another cup with similar results. Lovely.

Now if the neighbour with the tile cutter machinery would come to his senses and realize that it is Sunday and that construction noise is against the law. People, *&^%!

Flavors: Raspberry

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Sil

that sounds lovely – where was the retreat?

Evol Ving Ness

Downtown. It is a part of this programs. Highly recommend.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mindfulness-based_stress_reduction

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90

Sad sipdown, that now puts me in dilemma on whether or not I want to place a premature order at What-Cha or to wait a couple sad months without this tea. I’d have to speed through the White Rhino or Golden Snail, or suddenly fixate on trying that Rose Jin Xuan. Mm, rose cream (I’ve already vividly imagined this future tea drinking experience).

On Sticky Rice: I’ve decided that, while this is a casual drinker, the unique savoury flavour also makes this somewhat of a mood tea. I’m usually in the mood but sometimes I’m not. If I neglect the early steeps it can get a little too vegetal for my tastes. That’s why this doesn’t quite make it into my 91-100 flawless teas, despite the copious amount of notes I’ve written.

Steep Count: 3

Three steepings was about my average across the board but this tea can easily handle 5-6 when I’m committed. It helps that at 90C, I can steep it at 45s start and be completely satisfied with the flavour; What-Cha recommends 1-2min but I’m a flavour wimp.

(2016 fall harvest)

Flavors: Cream, Rice, Vegetal

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 45 sec 1 tsp 9 OZ / 266 ML
Daylon R Thomas

I hope you like all three of those.

Daylon R Thomas

Wow, I’m dumb. I’ve read those notes lol.

CrowKettle

It’s alright! It’s a fair question; liking the teas at the beginning isn’t the same as liking the teas after they’ve sat on my shelves for a few months.

And the rose jin xuan is a still a mystery :)

Daylon R Thomas

:) At minimum, I can say it’s a good Jin Xuan.

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drank Nepal Silver Oolong Tea by What-Cha
8556 tasting notes

Glad i have more of this from crowkettle to have later. Busy verdict – i like it! It’s not too green oolongy and has a really nice finish to it. I’d call it slightly floral but i wouldn’t want to scare those of us who don’t love floral away. :)

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92

Backlog.

This is the most coconut-y tea I’ve ever tasted. It’s like eating a delicious coconut cream pie or coconut macaroon. Intermingled with the coconut are notes of tropical fruit – pineapple, passionfruit, and lychee – and a burst of sweet flowers. The body is rich and the mouthfeel buttery. I got 8 excellent steeps out of it.

Shibi tea might just be my favorite tea from TTC. It’s consistently good and although the coconut was a little more intense in this harvest than usual, it had the juicy fruit and floral tones that really set it apart from other teas.

Flavors: Coconut, Flowers, Nectar, Tropical

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 45 sec 4 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Daylon R Thomas

4 g for 3 oz, damn is that hard Gong Fu.

Daylon R Thomas

Anyway, you’re review is selling me. There was commentary on the season again in the description “Our Shibi collaborator has done it again despite the challenges brought about by this Fall’s weather patterns in Taiwan.” If only they served it in larger quantities than 25 grams for 10 bucks.

Arby

Yeah, I’m sold. I’ll be picking up some of this if I order from TTC soon.

LuckyMe

I actually enjoy Shibi more than the AliShans I’ve had recently. It’s very similar to Shan Lin Xi, and comes from a nearby region I think. The price is a little high but it’s more worth it than a Dayuling IMO. TTC does have frequent sales and low shipping threshold ($25).

BTW, the leaf to water ratio is a little off because Steepster rounds off decimals. I use closer to 3.5g/80ml for gongfu.

Daylon R Thomas

Awesome! Nice to know. The only Dayuling that has impressed me for a good price was the one Berylleb offered. Bummer it is no longer 42 bucks for 150 grams. Thank you!

Daylon R Thomas

The Winter Rhythm 2015 from Taiwan Sourcing has actually been slighlty better than a few Alishans as well.

Illinois Medical Immigration

Good and nice,…i like this…

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85

Finally starting on my Chawangshop group buy sheng. This one was good. There was just a little bitterness but not much. I persisted for maybe six steeps. There was a fair amount of astringency to this on. It quickly developed a sweet note although I do not think I would use the word apricot, it wasn’t quite that sweet. This one was good and is one I would consider picking up the next time I order from Chawangshop.

I steeped this twelve times in a 150ml gaiwan with 7.4g leaf and boiling water. I gave it a 10 second rinse. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, 30 sec, 45 sec, 1 min, 1.5 min, and 2 minutes.

Preparation
Boiling 7 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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100

Found a wee bit of this, thankfully. It’s been a challenging week and yes, I know it is only Tuesday. You know, like when the universe decides to pour. Thank goodness for meditation. Seriously.

I like this a lot. Totally works for me. There’s plenty of mango and the genmaicha is just what it is supposed to be—green with roasty toasty rice. The mango lends a bit of sweetness and the green and roasty adds that other je ne sais pas quoi.

Not quite sure what wasn’t working for others with this one, possibly that it is not overly mango or overly sweet. For me, it is just perfect as is. Nothing missing. Nothing over the top.

Flavors: Green, Mango, Rice, Roasted, Toasty

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
52Teas

I love this tasting note. :)

Rosehips

I know exactly what sort of week you are talking about. Glad you had a tasty tea to help!

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This tea is a mix of good and bad. There were no unpleasant flavors and certainly no wet storage flavors. You could say the dominant flavor was a sweet note. However it was weak and not truly flavorful in nature. Who knows if this will improve and the sweet note get stronger. I do like this better than other Liu Baos I have tasted which have a heavy wet storage note.

I brewed this eight times in a 110ml teapot with 6.2g leaf and boiling water. I gave it a 10 second rinse. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, and 30 sec.

Preparation
Boiling 6 g 4 OZ / 110 ML

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80

Here is one I meant to get around to a lot sooner than I did. I had hoped to drink this last weekend, but obviously didn’t manage to find the time. Unfortunately, I still have numerous samples from Verdant Tea. It is my intention to start going through them a little more quickly and get reviews up in a more timely fashion. We’ll see how that goes.

I prepared this tea gongfu style. After a quick rinse, I steeped 5 grams of loose tea leaves in 4 ounces of 208 F water for 10 seconds. This infusion was chased by 12 additional infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 12 seconds, 15 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, and 3 minutes.

Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves emitted aromas of lilac, chrysanthemum, marigold, violet, green apple, and butter. After the rinse, the floral aromas intensified and were joined by emerging scents of cream, vanilla, kale, parsley, and grass. The first infusion saw the tea’s savory and vegetal qualities express themselves more fully on the nose to balance the strong floral aromas. In the mouth, I noted butter, cream, violet, lilac, grass, and green apple underscored by subtle traces of vanilla, parsley, kale, chrysanthemum, and marigold. Subsequent infusions brought out the vanilla, parsley, kale, chrysanthemum, and marigold in the mouth while impressions of celery, cucumber, crabapple, mild cinnamon, and minerals began to express themselves on the nose and on the palate. Later infusions maintained a largely savory and vegetal character, with minerals, grass, kale, parsley, butter, and cream notes underscored by faint wisps of green apple, vanilla, and marigold.

This was an interesting and rewarding oolong. I adored Master Zhang’s Autumn 2015 Mao Xie for its spicy, herbal, floral, and fruity qualities, and this tea was relatively similar. I did find it, however, to be a bit lighter and slicker in the mouth and more floral, savory, and vegetal in terms of aroma and flavor than last year’s offering. Of the two, I preferred the earlier tea, but this one was still well worth trying.

Flavors: Butter, Celery, Cinnamon, Cream, Cucumber, Floral, Fruity, Grass, Green Apple, Kale, Mineral, Parsley, Vanilla, Violet

Preparation
Boiling 5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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80

Came across a tiny bit of this in my sip down basket. Delicious. However, I’d like a bit more caramel and a bit more pumpkin and a bit more cheesecake. I am detecting only a bit of caramel and the slightest bit of of cream on a lovely base. A delicious cup—and I’d happily drink many many more as is—but not quite living up to its name.

That said, to be fair, this leaf is getting a bit old. It is from fairly early on in Anne’s reign.

apieceofquiche

This sounds like a lovely cuppa. Maybe it’ll make a return re-blended this fall. Fingers crossed.

CrowKettle

This is one of the teas that hooked me on the old 52teas. I also second a hopeful return of this or the oolong version (with even more cheesecake)!

Evol Ving Ness

Oolong version too—-oooooooooooooh!

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53
drank Jade Snail Spring by Tealyra
334 tasting notes

I finished up the last of this tea earlier in the afternoon. I have been trying to have at least one cup of green tea every evening for the past week, and this was the one I turned to most frequently. I cannot say that it impressed me all that much, but I did find it suitable as a no-frills daily drinker. For me, it was the type of green tea I could just throw back and not think much about, but in order to give it a fair shake, I opted to gongfu it for the review session.

After a quick rinse, I steeped 6 grams of loose tea leaves in 4 ounces of 175 F water for 5 seconds. This infusion was chased by 13 subsequent infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 7 seconds, 10 seconds, 15 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, and 3 minutes.

Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves emitted aromas of malt, smoke, and hay. After the rinse, I began to detect emerging hints of grilled corn, roasted chestnuts, and citrus. The first infusion produced an incredibly similar, though smokier, more citrusy bouquet. In the mouth, I picked up mild notes of damp grass, hay, malt, smoke, roasted grain, and roasted chestnuts underscored by traces of grilled corn and indistinct citrus. Subsequent infusions brought out the citrus aromas and flavors. I began to detect distinct lemon zest, grapefruit pith, orange peel, and kumquat impressions. I also began to pick up aromas and flavors of minerals, cedar, pine nuts, green beans, and char, as well as a more pronounced grilled corn impression that soon began to remind me more of corn husks. The later infusions were heavy on mineral, grass, hay, roasted chestnut, green bean, corn husk, smoke, and char notes, though I could still detect faint impressions of pine nuts and lemon zest at certain points.

All in all, I found this tea to be pleasant and drinkable, but nothing fantastic. It was very basic and easy-going, but I did not find it all that interesting. Honestly, I cannot say that I would recommend it, but at the same time, I cannot caution others to avoid it. Others who try this tea may ultimately feel differently, but it was just sort of “meh” for me.

Flavors: Cedar, Char, Chestnut, Citrus, Corn Husk, Grain, Grapefruit, Grass, Green Beans, Hay, Lemon Zest, Malt, Mineral, Orange, Pine, Smoke

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 6 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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drank 2016 Lao Hei Zhai by Hojo Tea
1059 tasting notes

Hands down among the top 3 raw puerh in terms of leaf quality… beautiful beautiful beautiful leaf.

Anyways, Hojo’’s info
“It is made of the naturally farmed
tea.It gives light body and extremely
long lasting after taste. Tea gives flioral
note thanks to slightly lighter panfrying
process. This tea will also age
very well as it is very rich in poly
phenol and minerals.”

$60/200g

This is a must purchase for me after I had two sessions of it. The tea goes on for 20+ steeps and it’s absolutely amazing. Hopefully there is a 2017 that comes out as well so I can compare the two over time.

Solid light taste with floral notes inbetween the vegetable notes and a light raw puerh note that isn’t hard on the mouth at all.

Rich

Hojo group buy?

mrmopar

Sounds like it…

Sqt

ooh, a group buy would be awesome.

dfafjf

I’m down!

Liquid Proust

Maybe in October???

Sqt

Yes please!

Rich

Absolutely! I’m in!

mrmopar

Probably as well.

minimastermike

Count me in.

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drank Purple Leaf Tea by Justea
1235 tasting notes

This Purple Leaf tea steeps up beautifully! I suggest you check out my photos in the link at the end of my review. You get a unique pale purple, that turns pink with lemon.

The flavor is quite light, a little vegetal and plummy. However the texture is quite dry and it makes your whole digestive tract dry. I steeped this low temperature, so the balance of flavor output and astringency is VERY fussy. Someone cold brew this and report back. It is good if you like really delicate, dry green tea.

Full review on Oolong Owl http://oolongowl.com/purple-leaf-tea-justea/

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C

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I do not know if the unpleasant note I get from this tea is from the fermentation or if it was wet stored. It tastes much like a wet storage note. A taste of either wet wood or perhaps bamboo. Maybe this one will improve with a couple of years of dry storage.

I steeped this eight times in a 75ml teapot with 5g leaf and boiling water. I gave it a 10 second rinse. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, and 30 sec.

Preparation
Boiling 5 g 3 OZ / 75 ML

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88

Zen has brought us quite a tasty Assam. Malty, not all that astringent, at least to my tastes, and a hint of caramel-like sweetness. I added some whole milk and it brought out the sweetness even more. It’s like I’m drinking tea with cream and sugar yet I didn’t add any sugar to this.

It was a good thing that I’ve run out of coffee to brew in the morning because it only pushed me to try this. It’s going really well with the new Pure Protein Mocha Brownie bars.

Oh look at that, according to Steepster, this is the 800th tea I’ve rated on here. I know I’ve tried even more than that, but that’s still cool.

teepland

Sounds good—I will have to add this to my list of teas to try!

Fjellrev

Totally worth checking out. :)

Arby

Congrats on 800!

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So much has been happening and while I have enjoyed myself quite a bit, I really miss the higher volume of engagement within the tea community. Just got done at an anime convention where I cosplayed as Char Aznable; you can see here if you’d like https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10154629015982361&set=a.439108127360.221932.714617360&type=3&theater what is awesome about this is that the setup that we are next to is a Make a Wish project (which is why this is the pictured I am using, it means much more than the others)

Anyways, recently I bought this tea that looks all crazy on Global Tea Hut’s website: Aged Mountain Gate. I am almost sure the tea leaves are different that are used because look at it!!!
https://www.instagram.com/p/BU7B2MfgCok/

So the taste is confusing… as I drank it, blindfolded I would have said this is a 1 to 2 year old maocha. The hand pressing on this must allow it to retain that maocha’ness to it where the depth doesn’t withstand as many boiling baths. I am going to store this in my pumidor and hope that it develops more depth or something because right now it’s a mystery; though I am still new to it.

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100
drank Kashmire Chai by Remedy Cafe
1596 tasting notes

After working six days in a row, I treated myself to one of these yesterday evening, as well as a Palak Paneer wrap. I went to their High Street location for the first time and colour me impressed by the flavours of both the chai and wrap. I find that the more they expand throughout Edmonton, the more they are cutting corners on the quality, unfortunately. At their other locations, the chai seems to be more watered down and not as spicy, and the wraps aren’t as spicy and are smaller too.

Going to this location yesterday was like turning back the clock a few years. The Kashmire chai, which I always order half-sweet with soy milk, was heavier on the spice, and they were more generous with the pistachio and rose topping too. The wrap was also spicier and was larger than the ones I’ve ordered from their other locations. I hope this wasn’t just a coincidence!

I told myself not to eat badly (I swear I must have gained back a few pounds over these past couple months) but I just couldn’t resist this. It’s probably been half a year since I went to Remedy.

In conclusion, that was the best Kashmire chai I’ve had since moving back to Alberta.

Daylon R Thomas

That sounds tasty.

Evol Ving Ness

Indeed it does.

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87

Here’s another tea I have been working my way through over the past several days. I only have about 6 grams left as of this time and expect to finish the remainder tomorrow morning. Overall, I found this to be a mild, pleasant first flush Darjeeling.

I prepared this tea in the Western style. I steeped a fairly heaping teaspoon of loose tea leaves in approximately 8 ounces of 194 F water for 5 minutes. I did not attempt any additional infusions.

Prior to infusion, the dry tea leaves produced a slightly floral, grassy, nutty bouquet. After infusion, I noted stronger floral aromas reminiscent of a combination of dandelion, chrysanthemum, and marigold, as well as touches of almond, hay, grass, malt, and pine needles. In the mouth, I picked up notes of lemon zest, herbs, grass, straw, pine needles, wood, malt, almond, and flowers underscored by subtle impressions of Muscatel and something of a butteriness. The finish was grassy, nutty, and malty with lingering pine needle and floral tones.

This was kind of a different first flush Darjeeling. It was very malty, nutty, and floral with less of a Muscatel and herbal presence than a number of others I have tried. I’ve noticed that a lot of folks list orange, mango, jasmine, and honeysuckle aromas and flavors when they describe the teas produced by the Oaks Estate, but I did not get any of that here. Truthfully, I let this tea go for some time and I could tell that it had perhaps lost a little of its luster, but overall, I still found it to be very enjoyable.

Flavors: Almond, Butter, Dandelion, Floral, Grass, Herbs, Lemon Zest, Malt, Muscatel, Pine, Straw, Wood

Preparation
5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
teepland

I may have to try this one. I had a bad experience with other teas from this vendor, but might have to try them again based on your experience!

eastkyteaguy

Teepland, in my experience Tealyra tends to be pretty hit or miss overall. I think part of the problem is that because they don’t identify their sources or consistently identify years of harvest, you can never actually be sure of what you’re getting. You can also not be certain that their teas come from the same sources from year to year, so it’s a crap shoot really.

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92

It’s ma birtday, gonna party like it’s ma birtday, gonna sip Rou Gui like it’s ma birtday!

It’s also my first day without school or work in a week or two, and the first gray and rainy day in months. That may be a downer to some people, but personally I love the rain as it’s clean and refreshing and gives me an excuse to sit around playing music and sipping tea all day :)

This is a nice tea that brews a medium orange with a floral gardenia and spice aroma. Tastes of ripe fruit, cinnamon, vanilla, and slightly vegetal. Brown sugar sweetness and walnut-like tannins. Background notes of minerals, fresh mint leaf, and dried seafood-like umami. Great smell in the bottom of the cha hai!

A good tea, but quite a bit different than I remember YS’s Rou Gui being when I had it a few years ago.

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Cinnamon, Fruity, Gardenias, Marine, Mineral, Mint, Vanilla, Vegetal, Walnut

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 8 g 4 OZ / 120 ML
apefuzz

Happy birthday! Excellent choice for a birthday libation.

Sqt

Woo! Have a great day!

looseTman

Have a fantastic b-day & many more!

boychik

Happy Birthday!

tanluwils

Happy Birthday! Hooray for geminis! Mine is also just a few days away! :)

I have the 2015 version of this one which only has a faint floral element to it.. Your description gives me the impression the 2016 version might be a better harvest.

mrmopar

Happy Birthday! I am a bit late.

tperez

Thanks guys!

andresito

Happy belated birthday!!!

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91

I know I have been missing in action for a couple of days, but I wanted to take some time off in order to recharge after a stressful week. I also wanted to finish off some of the older teas of which I still had larger amounts. This was a tea I started last month, but never got around to finishing for whatever reason. I have been working on finishing it up the last couple of days. I don’t normally drink many Ceylonese teas or tea blends these days, but I must say that I greatly enjoyed this one.

I kept my preparation simple for this tea. I steeped 1 full teaspoon of loose tea leaves in 8 ounces of 205 F water for 5 minutes. If memory serves, Tealyra recommended an infusion of 3 minutes, but I tend to like black teas of this type brisk, strong, and tannic. That’s what I was going for here.

Prior to infusion, the dry tea leaves produced subtle aromas reminiscent of a combination of molasses, sweet potatoes, honey, and wood. After infusion, the rich orange tea liquor produced strong aromas of malt, toast, roasted nuts, molasses, caramel, wood, and sweet potatoes. In the mouth, the tea liquor was lively and moderately astringent, offering pronounced notes of honey, brown toast, malt, wood, brown sugar, molasses, caramel, cream, sweet potato, orange rind, leather, and roasted nuts (chestnut and black walnut). The finish was smooth and satisfying. I noted nice lingering touches of malt, roasted nuts, toast, molasses, and honey.

This was a very nice Ceylon Orange Pekoe. It had plenty of character on the nose and in the mouth while avoiding the pronounced astringency and mild bitterness of some others. In my opinion, this would make an excellent morning or early afternoon tea. If you are a fan of straight Ceylonese black teas and/or black tea blends, I am willing to bet you will be satisfied with this one.

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Brown Toast, Caramel, Chestnut, Cream, Honey, Leather, Malt, Molasses, Orange, Sweet Potatoes, Walnut, Wood

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Daylon R Thomas

So you’re saying “I don’t always drink ceylon, but when I do, I prefer Orange Pekoe.”

eastkyteaguy

Yep, that’s exactly what I’m saying.

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