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Recent Tasting Notes
Quite a difference cold brewed. Much greener like grass but not grassy. Rich, heady florals and some toastiness. Annoying bitterness at this strength. Do most people cold brew with more leaf than they would hot? I do not but that’s what I did this time. I think I should stick to my typical low grammage for refrigerated refreshment — keep the bitter out.
Flavors: Bitter, Floral, Grass, Green, Toasty
I have no idea from whence this tea came nor exactly what kind of oolong it is. I’m guessing it’s at least from Anxi.
The dry leaf smells like baked fruits like cherry and cranberry, apple skins and woody cinnamon. Warming the leaf brings forth additions of a sugarcane-like sweetness and flowers. Once brewed, the aroma of the tea becomes very sweet with rich white florals and the woody cinnamon of the dry leaf transforms to a very soft, floral cinnamon. The taste is nonexistent with short gongfu steeps. Switching to longer steeps (starting at 1min) brings out a mild flavor with no distinctions beyond an impression of toasty-woody-vegetal apricot-straw. The aftertaste of unripe apricot is also mild. No astringency, bitterness in only late steeps, no sourness as in a tieguanyin. Slightly mouth-cooling. Surprisingly, the bottom of the cup retains a rich, sweet smell.
This oolong is reminiscent of pretty much any pot of oolong from a Chinese restaurant. In that way, it’s a very neutral tea. The tea’s mild qualities have made it a particularly enjoyable pick for this hot weather.
Flavors: Apple Skins, Apricot, Cherry, Cinnamon, Cranberry, Flowers, Menthol, Mineral, Straw, Sugarcane, Toasty, Vegetal, Wood
Ugh… my last note was on the day of my Steepsterversary and I haven’t noticed it at all? Happy 3rd “birthday” to me! I know I started slowly, then I was adding a note per day, sometimes even more and now… I am again on slow pace as I don’t have that much time for writing notes. I have survived a several hiatus of this website as well, joined when it was rather in agony… but still I have found here a few new friends and tried so many teas I would not otherwise. Thank you!
But now, about this oolong. I have prepared it today in the gloomy morning, as I wasn’t sure what I wanted to drink at all! So I took this pouch from derk (Thanks!) and just went with two teaspoons. Western.
I was reading mine and derk’s notes between paragraphs.
I have to agree with both of us… it is mild, vegetal, quite neutral though, tea. Pretty much standard, no flaws, but as well nothing to be amazed about. Quite floral today somehow, hints of stonefruits in aroma. Easy drinking tea, for daily drinking. Got a lot to finish, but I feel early autumn will be a good time for it.
Flavors: Floral, Green, Smooth, Stonefruit, Vegetal
Is it this one? Who knows. It is 10 grams from derk, saying “Ten Ren oolong, 10 grams; how old ?” But thank you anyway!
I used 3 grams in my 300 ml glass cup, grandpa style. It seems it is more than enough. Leaves expanded and are half filliing the cup! Aroma – well, I think I note vegetal and mostly beans?
Taste is generic vegetal, but quite nice and mellow. Maybe bit buttery?
Anyway; probably quite cheap, but nice. Thank you derk!
Flavors: Butter, Green Beans, Vegetal
The dried leaves are a dull brown and broken in small pieces. I see some pieces of stem mixed in, though there are also some nicely curled full leaves. They have a rich, roasted scent, like the rice that sticks to the side of the pot and gets crunchy. Yum!
When steeped, the tea is a dark golden-orange. It smells of slightly charred toast and roasted nuts, and tastes like toasted rice, a full deep flavor that lingers. A very thick, full mouthfeel. There’s no astringency, even if you accidentally oversteep it. It’s a tea that holds up very well to multiple resteepings, and that gives a lot of flavor for few leaves.
I’m not actually a huge fan of Ti Kuan Yins, but this is an excellent example of the best the tea can be. It’s a wonderful wake-up tea, especially on cold, gray mornings.
(Note: purchased loose-leaf, Dec 2019. Not sure of country of origin.)
Flavors: Char, Roasted Barley, Toast, Toasted Rice
The dried leaves are dark green, mixed between small fannings and whole, curled leaves. They smell of wood smoke and baking bread. After steeping, the whole leaves uncurl beautifully and the tea is a rich orange color. The scent is chestnuts and butter and fresh grass. It tastes of toast, nuts, and honey. Not a stunner, but a really excellent everyday sort of tea.
Flavors: Bread, Brown Toast, Butter, Chestnut, Creamy, Cut Grass, Honey, Roasted
I don’t know exactly how I feel about this ginger tea. I kind of like how the ginger is not that prominent and that it’s a really relaxing tea to drink, but I also hate how the ginger is not prominent in this tea and that I don’t feel the burning sensation that strong ginger tea’s give. I would recommend this tea for when you’re starting to feel your throat is sore? or if you just want a little hint of ginger to drink. For full on throat soreness…I would not recommend this tea.
Thank you Hapatite for the sample. Unfortunately this one wasn’t my favourite. The black tea didn’t really add much, in fact I didn’t realise it was in the blend until I came to review it! It wasn’t awful, but when it comes down to it there are other things I’d rather be drinking, and I preferred the hibiscus on its own to this blend. One plus I did notice though is that this didn’t need as much sugar to counteract the sour hibiscus.
Sorry about the short and infrequent tasting notes guys, life has just gotten unexpectedly more stressful lately and even though I don’t have a lot going on (the opposite, actually) I haven’t felt in the right frame of mind to be writing up tasting notes and I haven’t even been drinking that much tea. Fingers crossed I’ll get out of my rut before it gets too deep, I’ve been there before and I’m not going back.
Sorry about the slightly dark turn that apology just took, too…
Picked this up at Taipei 101 (their crazy tall skyscraper), when I was going through an oolong withdrawal.
The flavour profile is crisp, floral and sweet. Minimal butter. It’s a gentle tea but I can still taste flavours which, if steeped longer, contribute to the strong flavours found in bottled oolong beverages. There’s the potential of bitterness in those floral caffeine laced notes.
I prefer my green oolong milky or, if it’s buttery, to be incredibly buttery, but with only two green oolong varieties in my cupboard this is gold.
Flavors: Butter, Cantaloupe, Cucumber, Flowers, Honey
I’m assuming this is the tea I’m reviewing (purchased 100g for 450NT).
I don’t normally buy TenRen, as I think it’s overpriced, but apparently they are trusted when it comes to provenance.
Definitely a green version of Dong Ding. Rolled leaves are dark green and have a pleasantly fresh grassy pear aroma.
Infusion gives off baked apples, cream and gentle spice.
Taste is more apply and bitter vegetable greens with a slight chemical taste on the finish (at least on first few infusions).
This is good, but not great. A fine daily drinker.
Surprising taste as the mango is semi sweet but the green tea contributes a bitter taste to the liquid. I ended up mixing this with a lighter green tea that I bought from them to make it more drinkable, but I don’t even know what that tea was because the sticker they put on it has no English and I told the lady to just give me what she likes. This tea alone was not something I would want to drink again though.
Time to finish the EU TTB teas so I can start a new. The sign up is open by the way for round 4!
The raw leaf is wonderfully sweet and pure lychee like with a slight malt and smoke finish. Very pleasant!
Sampled with a drop of milk.
Flavour is malty yet sweet with lingering lychee notes and a touch of smoke. Seems to remain consistent throughout the sips as well, even as it cools. Though there is some dryness now in the after taste.
I admit that I’m not a lover of lychee, it tastes like artificial sweetener in my opinion. Overly sweet yet something almost chemical like about it. Love the smell but just not a fan of it’s taste. This is in general and not aimed at this specific blend. Still it’s pleasant enough!
Nothing I would miss or desire more of but a nice tea all the same.
Flavors: Drying, Lychee, Malt, Smoke
A very pleasant Chinese black tea. Surprisingly delicate and complex, the lovely golden-red color is almost too pretty to drink. Light floral aromas, the steeped leaves have notes of dry wood which doesn’t transfer much to the cup, but is there hidden amongst the orchids and chocolate. Subtle malt with hints of smoke and cooked apples dominate the flavor profile. Smooth and rich, yet delicate with nice acidity and almost no astringency to talk about on the lingering exotic coco finish. Could easily be an every day black or used for experimenting with home blending.
I’m assuming that this is the Keemun that I got from Ten Ren’s today, and since there isn’t another listing for a Keemun, I’ll just put my review here and make it my own. XD
And as much as I want to review the actual store, I’ll resist and just stick with the tea.
This review is based on having no idea for brewing parameters and just using my basic 1.5 tsp/12 oz @ 3min Boiling.
The tea definitely has a smoky smell to it brew wise. Not Lapsang in-your-face, but a definite woodsmoke smell.
Taste wise it’s got a nice smoky hint to it, along with a slightly almost sweet note (though that might be just residue from the spoon I was using to slurp since the mug really is too hot still to drink from). Mildly astringent and just bordering on a bit bitter for me. Next time I might do 2:30 min or try a lower temp on the water.
It’s honestly not the train wreck I was fearing it might be with me just guesstimating everything. I liked it better after adding a bit of Truvia to sweeten it, but then I always add sugar to my tea eventually. But this one is good enough to stand on it’s own. I’m not sure how it would handle milk though, not to mention that would be a bit weird to me. Lol!
So yeah, not a bad tea. Not the best Keemun that I’ve had (not that I have a huge worldly experience of Keemun), but I’ll certainly drink it eventually.