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Caramel, Cocoa, Creamy, Smooth, Sweet, Thick, Brown Sugar, Malt, Nutty, Sugar, Tangy, Astringent, Brown Toast, Cream, Honey, Pecan, Red Fruits, Sweet Potatoes, Vanilla, Almond, Cranberry, Milk, Nuts, Round , Tannic, Tannin, Walnut, Maple Syrup, Molasses, Cherry, Toast
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205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 15 sec 8 g 11 oz / 311 ml

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12 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Drank this yesterday while at rhinke’s dad’s holiday gathering. Figured it would be a good idea to take something we could easily prepare western style and I was right. Brewed up a nice, deep red...” Read full tasting note
  • “I brewed this western style this morning in my new teapot and cups from Epcot China. The cups are kind of that bubbled shape where the middle sticks out wide and then tapers closer together towards...” Read full tasting note
  • “My first thought on the first sip was “WHOA, complicated.” There are a lot of layers to this tea. This is an introspective tea, something to spend a quiet afternoon on, thinking. I like to call...” Read full tasting note
  • “Finally getting around to trying this one. Such an aesthetically pleasing tea. Smells strongly of pecan in the dry leaf. Steepings lead first to strong pecan notes, which is really nice. I’ve not...” Read full tasting note

From Liquid Proust Teas

Liquid Proust’s first literary appreciation tea. Part on in a series for Marcel Proust masterpiece: In Search of Lost Time. Starting with the first of course: Swann’s Way captured me within the first 15 pages and once I got past how long Proust writes, I knew I would be spending hours and hours reading his work.

So while this is my attempt to capture a novel within the creation of a tea, which is actually impossible, I hope it is an enjoyable experience for others as well.

Starting with the base is important and while the link between such a long read and a long session would lead to a cooked/ripe pu’erh, I ended up going a different route because of ingredients being needed for the blend. Wagering between a unique oolong or black tea took a while, but I ultimately realized I have an abundance of oolong teas coming out so I went for a black tea base. Between the choice of using an Japanese black tea or finding an African one was the first choice, however I ended up finding an interesting sunmoon lake black tea. What captured me about this tea was the depth that it could reach after a few steeps. At first it isn’t the most thought provoking tea, but the potential it had made me go for it; after all, I haven’t seen a sunmoon lake blend yet.

So why did I need depth and something that had to slowly open and then die out in a flat way? Well, for me Swann’s Way is many things but one of the major thing that pop out is figuring out this thing called ‘love’. Love is a very deep and mysterious emotion; therefore I knew I needed something that takes a few sips because it’s not only complex but ask to be revisited.

Taste wise for a base tea was figured out and the other elements came into place. Did I want a mouth feel, a fruity taste, a sweet tasting tea, a flavored tea, a simple blend… so many options. I thought about what love would taste like if it was a tea and came up with such things as: meaty/thick/filling and sweet but fading due to needing a remembrance. Now I was not about to put beef jerky or milk candy in the blend so I thought about it. Roasting nuts has been on my list of things to do for a awhile so I went ahead and made the decision to roast pecans and then figure out a way to make them sweet.

The pecans are meant to represent a ‘meatness’ to this concept of love. Something had to coat that idea, being the sweetness. I recently found this odd black cane sugar from Yunnan and decided that I could caramelize it and pour it over the freshly roasted pecan. Well that sounded pretty simple so I decided to add cocoa nibs and vanilla extract to the process of making caramel.

Spoiler Alert
Love doesn’t end up as sweet as it first was at one point in Swann’s Way which made this type of caramel that I produced to be a great resemblance of the novel. The sweetness fades away while the base become stronger. Learning more about this thing called love and facing it full on provides the possibility to taste/see what is really there. However, Swann’s Way is a novel and not an idea so that means that it is comprised of sentences and anyone who has read a little Proust knows that a sentence can last a whole page. This was probably the hardest concept to capture; my enjoyment of Proust’s writing style. Doing the best I could, I knew I wanted something with some malt and thickness to it that faded away like the others rather than opening up and came across the idea of using a dianhong. My search didn’t come up with anything that fit the idea of a sentence; appears to be a few words, but ends up expanding unto something larger and connected to others after it. Still couldn’t figure it out as I wanted something like those snake fireworks that just keep opening up. I came pretty close by using some Yunnan Bi Luo Chun. The mixture of chocolate and sweetness that fades away, while still being a nice dark brew, worked out quite well for what I was going for.

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12 Tasting Notes

293 tasting notes

Drank this yesterday while at rhinke’s dad’s holiday gathering. Figured it would be a good idea to take something we could easily prepare western style and I was right. Brewed up a nice, deep red that was super smooth and thick in texture, with a sweet, rich taste with notes of cocoa, subtle caramel and a comforting creaminess. The flavors opened up more over a couple of subsequent steeps, which I always appreciate being able to get when gong the western route as I tend to for blends.

Definitely an enjoyable drink, and it was the perfect choice for navigating chilly kitchen conversations with new people during this time of year.

Flavors: Caramel, Cocoa, Creamy, Smooth, Sweet, Thick

Boiling 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 1 OZ / 16 ML

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208 tasting notes

I brewed this western style this morning in my new teapot and cups from Epcot China. The cups are kind of that bubbled shape where the middle sticks out wide and then tapers closer together towards the lip. This makes for a better trap to capture the scent of the tea, I am finding. And this tea is perfect for that.

If you can recall being at a spring or fall baseball game, there are usually a vendor or two who are selling those freshly roasted candied nuts that smell like the clouds of heaven. This tea captures much of that scent. It is delightful. The taste is a little less sweet but it does still carry sweetness along with the slight malt of a black tea. There is a nuttiness and a slight tang on the back of the tongue as well. A really enjoyable pot of tea this morning.

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Malt, Nutty, Sugar, Sweet, Tangy

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 8 g 20 OZ / 591 ML

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226 tasting notes

My first thought on the first sip was “WHOA, complicated.” There are a lot of layers to this tea. This is an introspective tea, something to spend a quiet afternoon on, thinking.

I like to call teas like this traveling teas—the teas whose different flavors light up the regions of the tongue as you swallow. The dark flavors are the ones that hit first, which are sweet potatoes and cocoa. Then the tea hits the middle of the tongue with brighter flavors, like sugary red fruits. I’m going to tell you now that I suck at identifying fruits in teas, so red is as close as you’re going to get. As the brew fades in the back of the mouth, there’s malt, a little bit of astringency, and a honey-like sweetness. I also got some vanilla caramel flavor.

Though I couldn’t find the nuts in the first brew, subsequent steeps yielded a sweet, creamy pecan flavor, while most of the chocolate and fruits fell away.

Flavors: Astringent, Brown Sugar, Brown Toast, Caramel, Cocoa, Cream, Honey, Malt, Pecan, Red Fruits, Sweet, Sweet Potatoes, Vanilla

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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775 tasting notes

Finally getting around to trying this one. Such an aesthetically pleasing tea.

Smells strongly of pecan in the dry leaf. Steepings lead first to strong pecan notes, which is really nice. I’ve not had a pecan tea that brought pecans into the flavor without maple. I didn’t get any cocoa until the last 2 steeps of 6 but then it came out and replaced the pecan. An enjoyable transition. The pecan and cocoa melded nicely with the base. This was a nice, pleasant way to spend the evening.

Really well done.

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13 tasting notes

This tea is not only aesthetically pleasing, but also delicious! The tea is very smooth, rich, and slightly sweet and creamy. It tastes a lot like honey. Mmmm. Reminds me of sitting by the fireplace with a nice hot drink. It’s a very comforting tea, but still has that oomph to wake you up in the morning. The 2nd steeping is sweeter and less bold, but continues to have that smoothness that I really enjoy about this tea.

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 7 g 10 OZ / 295 ML

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1187 tasting notes

The dry leaves smell like caramelized peacan, fine black tea, and creamy toffee. What really draws me to it is the beautiful look of this blend. There are several colours of carefully curled leaves, some dark green, some moss green, some amber. The carmalized nuts looks tasty.

I had forgotten what type of teas were used (I was thinking oolong or green) but when I smelled the brew there was a definite black tea smell. The tannins come out strong.

I’m really happy I’ve had a chance to taste this because it is a step up from many black teas I’ve had. I accidentally brewed mine for 3 minutes (I intended to check on it at the 1.5 and 2 minute marks) but my cat got out and I had to chase him down outside. I’ll make this again and edit my tasting note because I think it would be best around 2 minutes and/or slightly cooler water.

FIRST STEEP: The brew tastes of strong black tea: malty, rich, and heavy on the tannins. There is a bit of cream and milk flavours coming through (I didn’t add milk or sweetener.) I can taste very subtle nuts but not as much as I would have liked. I’m getting a bit of almond and pecan. No caramel yet.

SECOND STEEP: (followed brewing instructions this time) Definitely more nutty and less tannic than before. I would now describe it as very slightly sweet as pecans usually are but there is also a bit of walnut and marzipan. The black tea base is less bold now, but it is much smoother.

Flavors: Almond, Cranberry, Cream, Creamy, Malt, Milk, Nuts, Pecan, Round , Smooth, Sweet, Tannic, Tannin, Walnut

205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 17 OZ / 500 ML

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362 tasting notes

I don’t usually go for flavored or blended teas, but I picked up one of the samplers from Liquid Proust’s website to give his teas a go. I’ve never had Sunmoon Lake Black tea, the base of this blend, before. I used boiling water and ~7g in my 120mL gaiwan. It’s possible this would do better western style. Not that I didn’t enjoy it gongfu.

I don’t think I’ve ever really reviewed a flavored blend before, so it seems weird saying that it tasted like its component parts, but that’s mostly what I got from this one. The first steep was lightly malty with a thick and full caramel flavor and cocoa/caramel aftertaste. If I let the tea cool down a bit, I could taste the pecans as well – this held true throughout the session. A few steeps in, the sweet caramel and cocoa flavors began to fade, but at the same time, the flavors from the tea base picked up, making for an interesting session. I started to get some dark fruit notes, kind of reminding me of cherries or maybe plums from the tea, still accompanied by whispers of the sugary sweet notes and nuttiness.

After trying this tea, I’m excited to get to the rest of LP’s blends. The flavors meshed quite well in this one and produced a very good tea. His passion is quite apparent in the care with which he selects ingredients, especially the base teas. I think the problem with a lot of flavored blends is that they just use shit tea – certainly not the case here. This one’s a winner.

Flavors: Caramel, Cherry, Cocoa, Malt, Nutty, Pecan, Sweet

Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

Twowors, Rummy Pu.


I’ve got a sample of that as well ;D

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97 tasting notes

The final day of Lion’s “A Week of Tea Exploration”, day seven, scented or flavored tea.

This is one of those teas that give you an experience during a session as it evolves as you go along. The ingredients push the aromatics once they hit the preheated pot giving off chocolate, caramel and a light nutty scent. Like liquid chocolate in both liquor color and flavor from the first infusion with the pecans giving just the right amount of nuttiness to the mix to the dark brown sugar and yam notes that come on from the black tea base in subsequent infusions. Even the color evolves from one beautiful hue to the next. There is so much going on with this tea that it’s just not possible to put it into words. Simply incredible. A great way to end the week of tea exploration.

Just around 5.5g of leaf, 10g total with the pecan pieces, 120ml Seong-il, boiling with 45s first, 30s second, 30s third, and 45s and up for subsequent infusions the base becoming more prominent as the blended items start to wane.

The tea:

The session:

Leaf unfurled:

Boiling 10 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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89 tasting notes

The dry leaves are aesthetically fun and autumn looking with a syrup and toasted nut smell. The liquor is a rich dark liquid that lightens to amber shades in later steeps with a delicious aroma that really screams maple syrup to me.

The taste is a full and rich body that isn’t as heavy as a standard black tea and a lip licking full sweetness that doesn’t taste like the maple syrup it smells like, haha. My first impression, in fact, was the sweet, warm comfort of a blanket next to a fireplace on a rainy autumn day. Which was pretty awesome. But, this was actually a complex enough tea that I’m still noticing new things every time I decide to have a session with it, mainly in the way the flavors play in and out and with each other.

Things that consistently stood out to me as strong pros were the meaty nut fullness, even up through the sixth steep, the depth and richness of the black tea base which manages longer staying power and a lack of bitterness I’ve been seeing in other blacks when resteeped a few times. Resteeps well and good balance of flavors, with the varying highlights per steep making for a pleasant change with each pour.

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Malt, Nuts, Toast

Boiling 0 min, 45 sec 3 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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806 tasting notes

I’ve been antsy waiting for this tea.

I smelled every single package. I was actually surprised how sweet and thick the Watermelon Baozhong smelled. This one was a lot fainter.

I brew it up, and the first steep is nice. I mostly taste the caramelized sugar and or honey, with a bare bit of vanilla, and maybe pecan. This was Western at about 1 min and 35-40 seconds. Overall like a sugary syrup.

Second steep I think I overbrewed closer to three minutes. I mostly got some pecan, a lot of caramelized sugar, and light Assam.

Basically, this tasted like I imagine Assams should from tasting notes. “Smooth notes of pecan, brown sugar, and malt with hints of cocoa.” More actual tastes than tasting notes. The vanilla is more of the note making this tea all the more syrupy. Only that’s what this actually tastes like. The malt, though, is a light malt. There is a little bit of bitterness, but little. There’s almost no astringency though.

Third steep-no idea how much time I used, had more pecan and fainter sweetness. Lighter, but still thick enough to call malty in my opinion. This is a medium bodied-or maybe a lighter bodied black tea anyway.

This tea is sweet enough without sugar, and really on its own. A dash a cream did bring out the pecan flavor a little bit more in steep three. I’m going to have to try this again because this tea offers more dimensions to try. I prefer the Dianhong French Toast, but this tea is how Assam should be.

But I agree with LP. It tastes exactly like Honeygram Teddybears.

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Honey, Pecan, Smooth


Now that’s a drool-worthy description.

Daylon R Thomas

I do have tendency to over-describe lol. Brown sugar and honey are the things that people probably can taste for sure. The tea is definitely present and you can tell that it’s an Assam, but you don’t get the bitterness or astringency issues with it straight. Light but there in short.

Evol Ving Ness

^^ That. It sounds just lovely.

Daylon R Thomas

The way you write reminds me of one of my close friends lol.


Oh dear, this sounds like a must have! :)

Liquid Proust

When someone chooses Swann’s Way over Devil’s Grass on 4/20 … that’s how good this tea is ;)

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