90

Steeping this one up for the first time today. It came out five days ago, on August 2nd, as DTs introduced three or four new unflavoured teas. I assume the rationale is to win back a bit of interest from those of us who are not fans of the over-imitation flavoured and over-imitation sweetened teas they’ve started cranking out lately. I was certainly happy to see that this bai mu dan was one of the new offerings.

I am breaking in a new glass tea jar—well, not all that new as I bought it at the tea festival here at the end of January, but I’ve just begun using it in earnest. Why have I waited so long to engage with this tea jar? I like the shape and I like the style, but two things keep me from using it for daily steeping and carrying, aside from my experience that glass teas jars don’t tend to be good containers for throwing into my bag on a day out in the world. The tea capacity of this one is only about 10 or 12 ounces, as compared to my 16 ounce glass tea jars. The second thing is that this one is glass on the inside and glass on the outside, which makes it more fragile in my world. I can’t speak to either the leak factor as I use it upright at home, or the how long does the tea stay hot factor as that doesn’t concern me much.

This tea is quite lovely: mild, vegetal, and creamy. Very nice. I am not detecting the fresh snow pea flavour advertised.

The steeped leaf is beautiful: tiny, slender, and delicate. The clarity of the glass jar, compared to the slightest haze in the jars which have a plastic exterior, gives me a chance to appreciate the beauty of the leaf. Many of the leaves are in wee clumps of three or four still attached to their stem. The longer leaves are about the length of a dime, and about the width of a third of a dime.

Because white tea is so light in weight in comparison to other teas, the DT person who served me when I bought this one crammed the tea into the bag and tapped it down with the metal scoop resulting in crushed leaves. I see them at the bottom of my jar and it hurts my heart a little. Criminal. It’d be nice if DT’s gave their staff a bit of instruction on respect for the higher quality leaf. Maybe that is too much to ask.

I am going to give multiple steeping a whirl and see how it goes.

Edit—The second steep is still lovely and light. This may be the last good one.

Flavors: Creamy, Umami, Vegetal

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Mookit

I wonder, what difference does it make when the tea leaves are broken? Do they impact the flavour a lot?

Evol Ving Ness

There’s a whole thread about just this topic. Count me as among those who don’t want their leaves crushed. http://steepster.com/discuss/2501-is-this-bad-for-the-tea

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Comments

Mookit

I wonder, what difference does it make when the tea leaves are broken? Do they impact the flavour a lot?

Evol Ving Ness

There’s a whole thread about just this topic. Count me as among those who don’t want their leaves crushed. http://steepster.com/discuss/2501-is-this-bad-for-the-tea

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Bio

Note to self—-you do not actually need any more tea.

My real tea obsession began in February 2015.

Not, sadly, when I had been living and working in China, though I very much enjoyed sampling a variety of teas during my travels there as well. No, no, that would have been far too sensible.

I am a reformed coffee drinker. I still enjoy a long double espresso with a good quantity or milk or cream from time to time, but for now, tea is my thing. All day.

*note—this is way out of date, so if we are doing a swap and you are checking to see what I like and dislike, mostly never mind what you find below. One of these days, I will update this. In the meantime, check what I’ve been drinking and use your own judgement. I like all the teas. Well, I am open to trying all the teas.

I tend to drink black, green, or oolong tea in the morning to early afternoon. Rooibos or
Honeybush or herbal in the evening. And perhaps some sort of sleepy-type tea in the wee hours.

This year, I’ve been discovering flavoured teas, so it may look like that is all I drink although that would provide a false impression.

Not a big fan of chocolate or mint in teas, but I will try them and, from time to time, have been pleasantly surprised. Also, usually I dislike a prominent cinnamon flavour, if untempered with other things, in teas. Again, I say usually, because there are exceptions.

Also, please note that haven’t quite gotten into the habit of updating my tea cupboard on Steepster, and it is unlikely that I will do this on any kind of regular basis.

I drink my tea black and unsweetened. If there comes a rare moment that I add something to it, I will mention it.

Finally, while I thank large and successful tea companies for tantalizing and beckoning me to the world of tea, I prefer to support independent ventures with real people, real enthusiasm and commitment, and real dreams.

Currently, I am researching monthly tea subscriptions. Perhaps it will keep me out of tea shops.

And here is Shae’s rating scale— which I am using with permission, of course— which more or less describes the way I have been rating teas. I am going to make more of an effort to stay very close to these parameters now.

Rating Scale

1-20: By far, one of the worst teas I’ve tasted. I most certainly will not finish my cup and will likely “gift” the rest to my sweet husband who almost always enjoys the teas I dislike (and vice versa).

21-40: This tea is not good but if I mix it with another tea or find another steeping method I might be able to finish it.

41-60: This one is just okay. I might drink it again if someone were to give it to me, but I probably won’t be buying more for myself.

61-75: This is a consistently good tea. It’s reliable but not necessarily special.

76-90: This one is a notch above the rest and I would gladly enjoy a cup of it any day of the week. I’ll likely be keeping this in my cupboard, but it isn’t one of my all-time favorites.

91-95: One small change and this tea would be perfect. I’ll definitely have a stash of this in my kitchen if you come over for tea.

96-100: No words can describe this tea. It’s an experience, an aha moment. Closed eyes, wide smile, encompassing warmth. Absolutely incredible. Perfect.

Location

Mostly, but not always, Toronto, Canada.

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