268 Tasting Notes


I FINALLY finished my presentation for my meeting with my boss tomorrow. I only spent the last day and a half on it….le sigh. But, I recently found out that my boss uses my presentations as examples for how he wants people to put together their data, so I’m a bit pleased :)

Anyway, on to the first Teavivre oolong that I ordered. I ordered this, the iron goddess oolong, bailin gongfu, and the yun nan dian hong golden tips based on the recommendations that TheTeaFairy was kind enough to give me. Thanks for being my Teavivre guide! All her recommendations have been great.

The leaves of this oolong are a jade green and tightly rolled. They smell creamy with a hint of floral, qualities I love in an oolong! They brew up a very light green and produce a really nice, creamy oolong mouthfeel. The taste is also creamy, offset by bright florals that end in a sweet, clean finish. It also has a pleasingly mineral quality to it. This is a great green, floral oolong and was my favorite tea out of my Teavivre order!

Flavors: Creamy, Floral, Mineral, Sweet


So happy you like it!!! We are oolong sisters, it’s also my favourite oolong from Teavivre!!


We should have a virtual oolong party sometime! Thank you again for the recommendations! Your oolong taste is flawless :)

Lariel of Lórien

Yes, oolong chat party.


I’d come play if we had an oolong party!


Mj, that’s a great idea! When would you guys want to do that?


Not this weekend because I’m busy, but let me know.


I’ll be out of town for Labor Day weekend, and probably a lot of other people will be too. Maybe after Labor Day then? (Labor Day is September 1st, in case the Canadians among us don’t know that).

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Another from my recent Teavivre order and definitely one of my favorites :). The tea has small leaves that are a mix of black and golden. They smell extremely bready and produce an oak-colored brew. At first sip this tea shouts “BREAD!” and I’m like, thanks tea, I think I will. Once you get past the bread bomb, a buttery quality asserts itself along with a little malt, sweetness, and a slight tang at the very end of the sip that is kind of citrus-y in nature. This tea is smooth and mellow, very like what you might expect from a yunnan. You can tell that it’s high quality and also just plain yummy :).

Flavors: Bread, Butter, Citrus Zest, Malt, Sweet

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drank Bailin Gongfu Black Tea by Teavivre
268 tasting notes

My Teavivre order finally arrived on Friday! That same day, I got an email from Mary at Teavivre checking to make sure that everything arrived in good condition, which was really nice. Good customer service for sure!

I was excited to try this tea as it’s so highly regarded here on steepster. The leaves are small, dark, and twisted and smell malty, yeasty, and somewhat like cocoa. They yield a very bold sienna brew. The sip is dominated by a very strong sourdough bread note, much like I get from Verdant’s Laoshan Black. The taste is grainy up front, morphing into sourdough with subtle hints of honey and cocoa. The finish, though, was quite tannic to me, which was a slight minus in my book.

Flavors: Bread, Cocoa, Grain, Honey, Tannic


What temp and length did you do?


I did 194F for 2 or 2.5 min (somewhere in that range)


Actually 195F, but close enough


I love that they email to make sure everything is there and okay. I feel like if something wasn’t okay, they’d replace it immediately. They have good customer service.


You could try either brewing it at a lower temp and/or reducing the amount of leaf you used.


I recommend gongfu. Works all the time;) very short steeps


yyz and boychik, I can try both those suggestions since I have 100g of it lol


Lots to play with:).


I tried it at 185F this morning and it was much better! I haven’t had a chance to gongfu it yet, but I will try that soon!

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The Tealux tour continues, sponsored by Virginia! This tea is an eclectic mix of small twists and flakes in shades of greens and browns that smell quite grapey. They brew up a very light sienna. The taste is not what I would expect from a first flush darjeeling. It’s way more grape-like than the first flushes I’ve had before in my limited experience, but it’s not as “dark” tasting as the second flushes I’ve had. There’s also subtle, almost hidden, notes of hay and florals. It’s kind of an interesting hybrid darjeeling.

Flavors: Floral, Grapes, Hay

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drank Hong Yu - Red jade Organic by Tealux
268 tasting notes

This is a lovely spider leg tea, again courtesy of Virginia :). The leaves smell quite fruity and a bit malty, almost like a fruit beer or a lambic. The brew is a reddish brown, but the taste is mainly figs with apricot highlights over a solid malty base. Again, this really reminds of a fruity beer tea…or tea beer? It’s a really bright, fruity tea that really stood out for me. Yum!

Flavors: Apricot, Fig, Malt


Sounds wonderful!


I love that one too! Great description :-)

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drank Black Pearl Sumatra by Tealux
268 tasting notes

Virginia hooked me up with this oolong as well! Thanks so much :)

This is a very dark oolong- almost black- with tightly rolled leaves. The aroma while brewing is strongly apple and the color of the brew looks much more like a strong black tea than an oolong. A strong burnt sugar note pops up first, followed by a distinctly apple taste. The combination is almost exactly like slightly overcooked apple chips, at least the way I make them (1/8 in slices dusted with a cinnamon sugar mix and baked). It was a very interesting oolong for me, but not one that I would purchase.

Flavors: Apple, Burnt Sugar

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drank Wenshan Bao Zhong Reserve by Tealux
268 tasting notes

This sample came from the ever-wonderful Virginia! The leaves are quite twisty and a lovely green. They smell creamy and quite floral as well and brew up a light yellow color. First and foremost from this tea, I get a wonderfully creamy mouthfeel. Added to that are bright florals. I’m not great with differentiating florals, but I’m thinking lilac with hints of orchid. There’s also an unexpected pastry note underneath that is reminiscent of flaky pie crust. As the tea cools, the floral notes build. This oolong is quite lovely, but as far as Tealux oolongs go, my heart still belongs to the Gui Hua Osmanthus oolong.

Flavors: Creamy, Floral, Pastries

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drank Neptune by Lupicia
268 tasting notes

I’ve had this forever and never tried it til now (or this week anyway, this is a backlog). It has long, thin, twisty black leaves interspersed with marigold petals. The tea does smell like honeyed fruit, I will give it that. The taste is a bit bland though. It has a generic fruit taste with honey. If I had to name a flavor, I’d say the skin of a kumquat. The black base is very boring. Meh.

Flavors: Fruity, Honey

Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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This is note #250! I guess I shouldn’t make a big deal about that, but I reached #100 without noticing and thought, ah well #200 I’ll notice…big nope. That one blew past me without even ruffling my hair. So I noticed this one and have been saving it for a worthy tea (even though I have a tasting note backlog) and this tea is definitely worthy.

I just love the leaves of my this tea. They’re a lovely silver green, perfectly plump, and oh-so-soft with their fine coating of down. How could you not love this tea? It’s adorable. “I will name him George…And I will hug him and squeeze him and pet him and pat him and…” wait, what? Oh yeah, TEA!


Specifically this tea. The taste and smell are also soft and inviting. Sweet hay and honeysuckle. Yum! The sip begins with a delicate sweet hay, which melds into honeysuckle. Then, these notes start to fade as if you’ve just smelled them on a fresh spring breeze right after the rain. The finish is clean and refreshing, like a swallow of cold alpine water. It is like drinking the springtime sunshine after a long winter.

This tea makes me rejoice in the soft, nourishing, and lovely side of nature from inside my tiny apartment in a major metropolitan area. But if you hate fresh air, light, and the splendor of nature, never buy this tea. MOAR FOR ME. Muahahaha. It gets better every time I drink it

Flavors: Hay, Honeysuckle, Sweet

190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec 4 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Cathy Baratheon

This is so going on my next order

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I also sipped on this tea today while I was crocheting a cute monster beanie for my nephew’s first birthday. And I finished it, woot!
As a PSA, I thought I’d mention that this tea is perfect for sipping while crafting because the more it cools, the better it tastes!
For details, see my previous review :)


Can’t wait to try this!


I’ve noticed this one online too. My next order will be with Verdant Tea though. I’ll have to settle for one breakfast for a while but I want to try this tea. The name has something to do with it. I’m a big fan of Lord of the Rings.


This one is great! Rivendell is BETTER! You should add that one to your list too. It’s my new Preciousssss


They are something I consider long term plans. I’ve spent too much money on tea lately.

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Tea-obsessed, book worm scientist.

I love black tea, especially Chinese black tea- I’m looking at you Fujians and Yunnans! I also enjoy Indian teas, mostly first flush darjeelings (and a select few assams).
I think I’m recently starting to like oolongs better though- gasp! I’ve been cheating on my black teas with all these lovely, alluring green floral oolongs. Sorry I’m not sorry.
White tea gets a lot of love too! I am particularly fond of silver needle whites.
I can’t seem to appreciate green teas and rooibos is foul, IMO.

Other interests: Books! Board games! Nerdy entertainment like Harry Potter, Doctor Who, Battlestar Galactica, Game of Thrones, Sherlock, all the nature documentaries, etc etc. Also Disney!

I’m up for swaps!

Follow me on instagram if you like tea, food, and animal pics plus some other randomness:


Minneapolis, MN

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