1097 Tasting Notes

78

I love that the maple isn’t overpowering- just a nice highlight to the roasty and grassy matcha genmaicha! There’s a hint of something boozy going on too.

I still prefer my original Marshmallow Treat but this was a fun rendition that particularly pleased the mother.

Flavors: Grass, Maple Syrup, Marshmallow, Toasted Rice

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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78

Out of all the green tea samples I got from Teabento this one is probably the most distinctive from the others. As an assamese plant grown in Lao Cai, Vietnam (northern/China border), this tea has a profile reminiscent of a sheng puerh. Rich mushroom, string bean and other veggie notes provide an intriguing spectrum of sweet, sour and smoky. It’s a smooth cup, and a lot less nippy than some of the younger shengs in their early steeps. I still get a bit of smoky-sweet cedar woodchips though, which is something I associate with my limited exposure to sheng puerh.

I’m steeping this one western style with a 1min steep to start. I’m using a cup that I originally steeped the last of What-cha’s rose oolong in and I think it’s adding some creamy, floral (and possibly berry) notes to the profile (they’re a nice addition but not helpful when trying to discern an already complex tea).

Will do a gongfu steep next time! This tea deserves it.

Flavors: Cedar, Green Beans, Mushrooms, Smoke, Sour, Sweet, Vegetables, Vegetal

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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87

I’ve come to the conclusion this tea is too good for office life. It can handle abuse (uncertain temp and loooong steep time) but does it deserve it?

I’m down to about two servings left, and now the dream of The Good Life with black tea is uncertain. I want to put off ordering from What-Cha until some other teas are in stock/I can justify it financially and tea cupboard-wise.

(2017 spring harvest)

Flavors: Chocolate, Cocoa, Malt, Sweet Potatoes

Sil

noms

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82

All the offerings from Teabento’s green tea sample pack have been hits for me, falling in the 75-85 range, and this one isn’t an exception. I prefer it more than their Dragonwell and Jasmine Pearls, and maybe slightly less than the Kamairicha, Uji Sencha and Daejak. It’s flavourful sweet, nutty, vegetal profile has been my friend these last couple early mornings and evenings.

I’ll be sad when I’m out! It was such a novelty to have so many delicious unflavoured green teas in the cupboard. Besides this, only Lonely Saola is left and it’s smoky!

Flavors: Chestnut, Nutty, Peanut, Peas, Seaweed, Sweet, Warm Grass, Umami, Vegetal

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86
drank Banana Tie Guan Yin by 52teas
1097 tasting notes

My mother appears to have finished this up while I was at work. Darn! To reorder or not to reorder.. (and I ordered).

(2017 holiday blend)

Flavors: banana, Butter, Cream, Floral

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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95

Yes, my travel mug permanently smells like this now. Everyone in the office thought I had popcorn with butter. Disappointments abound. For them.

(2017 spring harvest)

Flavors: Butter, Cream, Popcorn, Rice

Evol Ving Ness

I noticed this effect on travel mugs as well from the DT’s version. That smell is super intoxicating.

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87

Where I’m at currently doesn’t have a temperature variant kettle so this is almost exclusively what I’ve been drinking every day- except for my commute travel mug, which permanently tastes and smells like Jin Xuan Milk Oolong types and will never be able to hold anything else.

My sister left the leaves in the pot for at least an hour, yet somehow this tea persisted in tasting delicious and amazing. The world is too good for this tea. Will have to gift some of this to my sis and her special tea brewing style; it won’t punish her for being late all the time!

Steep Count: 2

(2017 spring harvest)

Flavors: Chocolate, Cocoa, Malt, Raisins, Sweet Potatoes

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98
drank Milk Oolong by Mandala Tea
1097 tasting notes

Possibly too fancy for the fate of being a travelling mug on the long the bus commute but I don’t care! It’s a carrot that keeps me on my toes. Also, I can steep it as many times as I like before and after coming home; I started drinking it last night and we’re still going strong! It’s an amazing and generous tea :)

Steep Count: 6

Flavors: Butter, Cream, Floral, Mango, Milk

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 15 sec
Fjellrev

I admire you for having such a long steeping attention span! These days, I’m done by the second steep and already want to move onto something else.

CrowKettle

That’s how I feel most of the time but this one is an exception. I just want to chug it back all day. Other people in the household are with me on this, and will even resteep it a couple times for themselves if they see it’s already on the go!

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87

This kept me alive at the office today but I think I needed more. I’m fading quickly now.. I will make it stronger next time, and won’t feel so bad about sharing because I see What-Cha has the latest harvest of this and my precious Thailand Sticky Rice Oolong in stock. Just waiting on the Taiwan Li Shan Oolong Tea and maybe the Imperial Brandy Oolong (please come back this year); I want to try those two a lot!

(2017 spring harvest)

Flavors: Baked Bread, Chocolate, Cocoa, Malt, Raisins

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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81

I finished up this tea months ago, but it feels wrong not to leave a note on such a lovely green tea. I’m pretty sure this was Teabento freebie too.

Jasmine Pearls aren’t always my favourite (they’re my mom’s) but when they somehow end up in my cupboard it’s like stumbling upon a ballet performance in your kitchen. Too fancy, delicate and beautiful for my humble abode. This one stood out from the rest (H&S and Teavivre), lacking the soapy sour veg note of the parenthesized offerings. It was so sweet. If/when I’m looking for the Pearls again Teabento will be on the list of top contenders (it’s a short list but it isn’t a bad one).

Flavors: Floral, Jasmine, Sweet, Vegetal

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Profile

Bio

I started my Steepster loose leaf adventure back in 2012. I can’t say I’m completely new anymore, but I still view oolong as a magical, extraterrestrial creature that unfurls in water.

My favourites are teas like Milk Oolong, Silver Needle,and Japanese Sencha/Gyokuro, but I generally enjoy ALL the tea, including flavoured blends and a good ol’ cup of Earl Grey.

Subjective Rating System 4.0:
I don’t give a lot of low ratings out, since I tend to grab tea I know will appeal to me.

90-100: Exceptional and all-time favourite teas. I struggle between hoarding these like a dragon and consuming them like a poorly adjusted black hole.

80-89: Favourite teas (usually flavoured) that I try to keep around when possible.

70-79: Good teas that I’ll happily drink up, but with minor issues.

60-69: Ok teas, but I may have a few problems with quality, consistency, ingredient chemistry, and/or personal preferences.

50-59: Average to mediocre cup. Personal preference issues are apparent but still drinkable.

11-49: Varying levels of undrinkable tea.

1-10: Nightmare tea from the chaos realms. This tea is the embodiment of the primordial swamp, an unholy abomination. It’s very gross and I’m almost positive it doesn’t exist.

FAVOURITE INGREDIENTS/NOTES:

DESSERT FLAVOURS
Vanilla, Maple, Caramel, Butterscotch, Cream, Toffee, Nougat, Marzipan, Butter

FRUIT & BERRIES
Blackberry, Raspberry, Currants, Blueberry, Elderberry, Banana, Melon, Pineapple, Persimmon, Rhubarb, Passionfruit

CITRUS
Lime, Grapefruit, Lemon, Bergamot, Yuzu (orange is a hit or miss)

SPICES
Anise (but not licorice), Ginger, Clove-forward chai

AROMATIC & HERBACEOUS NOTES
Musky, “Fresh,” and/or Woody Incense-like stuff: Sandalwood, Frankincense, Juniper Eucalyptus, Mints

FLORALS
Lavender, Jasmine, Rose, Lilac, Violet, etc. ALL the flowers!

VEGGIE/GRAIN NOTES
Spinach, Grass, Hay, Cucumber, Rice, Sweet Potato

Less Preferred Flavours/Ingredients:

- Stevia and most sweeteners
- Cinnamon-forward blends
- Prunes
- Dark Roasts (oolong)
- Orange (if it’s a creamsicle)
- Mango pieces (love mango outside of tea though)
- Cocoa Nibs, 95% of the time.

Location

BC, Canada

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