616 Tasting Notes
A very unique oolong. They say its only oxidized till 45% but the leaves look so dark! It has woodsy and floral notes mixed together but not like the orchid notes in a lightly oxidized oolong, more like a flower growing out of a cedar tree that has leeched some of the cedar notes. The wet leaves have almost a cigarette smell to them. Not quite as gross as that smell but just not the nicest wet leaf tea smell.
My first few tastings were ok. I wasn’t as appreciative of it as I have been with other. However, after forgetting I had a cup left and letting it sit for a while I came back to discover it’s true floral flavors are to be discovered when cooled. The dry leaves have a very light, roasty aroma. Gorgeously twisted with care. The scent is so light that it’s almost non-existent, so you really have to stick your nose in the bag. The wet aroma reveals some interesting floral characteristics. The flavor, when steeped between 30 seconds to a minute, are mainly grassy with slight vegetal hints and a somewhat mineral after taste.
This tea brings back memories of my three week study aboard in China. While in Shanghai we were able to experience a traditional Chinese tea ceremony, though honestly I don’t quite remember if it was gong fu or something else. One of the teas I bought afterward came in a really cool box and I didn’t know till later but it was a ginseng oolong. Like milk oolong it’s a unique and somewhat strange tea. Starts off like a darker oolong but it’s the aftertaste that really makes it unique. Such an interesting mouth feel.
The Tea guy has really out done himself with this one. Subtle but tasty notes of vanilla. Not just your run of the mill vanilla either. It smells wonderful too. (Sidenote: I just picked up my 8 month old son and took a sip and he gave me this look and started licking his lips. I think he’s going to be a tea drinker!) Now for those who are looking for bourbon notes I’m going to warn you that they don’t pop out like the vanilla. Also if you’ve never had bourbon before you probably won’t quite know what you are looking for. The first time I discovered the bourbon it was like lightning. How did he do that! Oh I suppose I should also mention that the rooibos he uses is amazing.It is sweet and perfect for this blend.
Never thought I would see them try to make a sea salt caramel into a tea. Then again it seems like Teavana will try anything. Well from the very first smell I thought it would be a hit. Wafts of chocolate and cream first hit you when you open your tin. I honestly didn’t notice much of a smell as it was steeping and the wet smell is just.. there. Honestly, the flavor isn’t bad but the liquid is not fun to look at. Like hmm… what is all that floating in my cuppa?
If ratings were based off of smell and taste this tea would lose most of its points. It smells, so weird. The liquid isn’t very pretty to look at either. As far flavor goes, it definitely lives up to it’s name with hints of coconut and spices and an interesting after taste with a ginger zip. But it’s not one I would go out of my way to buy. Surprisingly the rooibos isn’t as strong as I thought it would be. Just not my digg.
I had high hopes for this tea. Probably much higher then I should have considering how much my friend paid for it. Granted price shouldn’t always determine whether it’s good or bad but quite honestly… this is bland. Can’t even taste the pineapple There isn’t even any grassy notes for the green tea. This is not a cup of tea its a cup of blah…