When I read “infused with the creaminess of milk” I thought I would dislike this. I’ve not had the best of luck with so-called milk oolongs with an exception or two. I have come close to gagging on some of the heavier ones.

So when I smelled the dry leaf of this in the packet, I was prepared for the worst. It has a sort of sprayed on buttery thing going on, like the butter flavor in butter flavored popcorn. In the packet, it smells to me like white rice as a butter delivery vehicle.

Gaiwan. 190F (for some reason my water isn’t heated all the way to 195 in the Zo), rinse, steep for 15 seconds plus 5 per steep for four steeps.

The first steep is pale yellow, which darkens to a champagne yellow and is clear. The third steep darkened to a yellow that was as buttery as the aroma.

The steeped tea’s aroma is also very rice-butter but the flavor is much milder.

There is definitely milk and cream, and maybe a little butter, in the flavor but there’s a sweetness that keeps it from heading toward buttermilk. It’s actually a pretty unique flavor, one I can’t recall tasting in other oolongs. It doesn’t really present as fruity to me, but perhaps that’s what I’m tasting, the hints of passionfruit and mango, and I’m just not recognizing it as such. The caramel is more apparent to me.

It’s always fun when you go into tasting a tea expecting to be horrified and you’re pleasantly surprised. While this is a shadow of the The O Dor, it’s one of the better milk flavored oolongs I’ve had, even with the “infused” bit.

Flavors: Butter, Caramel, Cream, Milk, Popcorn, Rice

190 °F / 87 °C

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I got obsessed with tea in 2010 for a while, then other things intruded, then I cycled back to it. I seem to be continuing that in for a while, out for a while cycle. I have a short attention span, but no shortage of tea.

I’m a mom, writer, gamer, lawyer, reader, runner, traveler, and enjoyer of life, literature, art, music, thought and kindness, in no particular order. I write fantasy and science fiction under the name J. J. Roth.

Personal biases: I drink tea without additives. If a tea needs milk or sugar to improve its flavor, its unlikely I’ll rate it high. The exception is chai, which I drink with milk/sugar or substitute. Rooibos and honeybush were my gateway drugs, but as my tastes developed they became less appealing — I still enjoy nicely done blends. I do not mix well with tulsi or yerba mate, and savory teas are more often a miss than a hit with me. I used to hate hibiscus, but I’ve turned that corner. Licorice, not so much.

Since I find others’ rating legends helpful, I added my own. But I don’t really find myself hating most things I try.

I try to rate teas in relation to others of the same type, for example, Earl Greys against other Earl Greys. But if a tea rates very high with me, it’s a stand out against all other teas I’ve tried.

95-100 A once in a lifetime experience; the best there is

90-94 Excellent; first rate; top notch; really terrific; will definitely buy more

80-89 Very good; will likely buy more

70-79 Good; would enjoy again, might buy again

60-69 Okay; wouldn’t pass up if offered, but likely won’t buy again

Below 60 Meh, so-so, iffy, or ick. The lower the number, the closer to ick.

I don’t swap. It’s nothing personal, it’s just that I have way more tea than any one person needs and am not lacking for new things to try. Also, I have way too much going on already in daily life and the additional commitment to get packages to people adds to my already high stress level. (Maybe it shouldn’t, but it does.)

That said, I enjoy reading folks’ notes, talking about what I drink, and getting to “know” people virtually here on Steepster so I can get ideas of other things I might want to try if I can ever again justify buying more tea. I also like keeping track of what I drink and what I thought about it.

My current process for tea note generation is described in my note on this tea: https://steepster.com/teas/mariage-freres/6990-the-des-impressionnistes


Bay Area, California



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