348 Tasting Notes
So I guess this is a new Bayswater rooibos blend? I had to add it to the database and I can’t find any useful info online. The “ingredient list” on their website was more of a list of flavours. Anyway, the dry tea is very aromatic – I keep sniffing it and the only description I can come up with is “fruity and boozy”. The brewing directions on the label are pretty intense (“2 heaping tea measuring spoons for 1 cup of water. steep 10-15 min”) but I went with it. It brews up a nice reddish-orange colour. As I was tasting it, the fruity and boozy impression continued, because first it reminded me of… ok, you know when you’re making fruitcake and there’s the part where you soak a bunch of dried fruit and stuff in like, rum or something? That. Then I sipped it some more and I thought maybe it was more like mulled wine. So, fruity and spicy and boozy? It’s good. :) There a bit of tartness that makes me wonder if there’s a tiny bit of hibiscus in this blend, but it might just be the citrus, and it’s balanced by the sweet and spicy. It has “plum” in the name, and maybe that’s the only reason I’m getting plum notes, but if it’s just the power of suggestion it’s very effective.
I went back to inspect the dry tea a bit more closely. So, it’s mostly red rooibos, and the most obvious additions are these little dried orange (?) wedges, like a 1cm strip of orange peel but with a little triangle of orange attached, why is this so hard to describe. Anyway, there are also some big chunks of cinnamon stick, and some crystalline bits are definitely sugar of some sort, and some little chunks of what I think are dates.
I am confused but pleased by this tea. :)
Flavors: Alcohol, Cinnamon, Fruity, Sweet, Tart
I knew I’d like this one, but it’s nice to have it confirmed. I can definitely get cream and burnt sugar from this, but I see what people are saying about hazelnut coffee as well. :) Yet another nice dessert tea. I think I’ll have to make a cup of this and one of Divine Temptation and compare them directly.
So far this is the only one from Zen Tea that’s been a miss for me. It’s not bad, but there are other vanilla black teas I like a lot more. To me both the scent and flavour are a lot more vanilla extract and less vanilla bean, and the base tea is more Ceylon and less Chinese, and apparently my tastes run heavily toward Chinese teas with vanilla bean flavour, so there you go.
Another one from yesterday. I remember being pretty impressed with this – I mean, it’s pretty much what it sounds like: black tea, strawberry and cream flavours, no big surprises there. But I think it’s well-executed. I like that the base is a blend of black teas including some Chinese black – I think that gives it a richer flavour than just the “generic ceylon black tea base” you know? And the strawberry and cream flavours are balanced and don’t taste weird or artificial. A nice dessert-y flavoured black.
I had this yesterday so this is from memory, but I definitely liked it. Roasty toasty oolong base, nutty hazelnut and creamy vanilla flavour. Hard to go wrong with that combination, really. :) I’ve been craving roasted oolongs since the weather got cold, and the flavouring transforms this one into a lovely desserty tea. I can see why this is popular.
This is a really tasty variation on the classic Earl Grey. :) No big surprises here, it tastes like black tea, bergamot, and grapefruit. To me the grapefruit flavour smells pink and sweet, and it blends nicely with the overall citrus character of the bergamot. I haven’t tried it with sugar or milk yet (citrus + milk seems a bit weird to me… but then again, creamcicles), but lots of people have had luck with various additions so I might have to try that next. Thank you Steepster, for providing recommendations to make my tea-choosing a little easier. ;)
Steeping this one gong-fu style today. 4g in the 4oz gaiwan. water around 95C. First three steeps were about 15 seconds.
First steep is very creamy. Like, if I closed my eyes I could almost believe milk had been added. Smooth, malty, with a honey sweetness. Second steep brings a richer, slightly woody malt flavour with an almost citrusy fruitiness. Still very smooth, but no longer milky. Third steep is like the second, very fresh and clean tasting with a tiny bit of astringency. I’m definitely going to keep steeping this, but I’m running out of patience for this note so I’m going to end it here. :)
This isn’t always the kind of black tea I crave, but it’s definitely high quality and an excellent example of the type.
Flavors: Citrus, Malt, Milk, Wood
I was inspired by Brenden’s “Art of Darkness” blend to try mixing this with Tisano cacao shells. So, I started with 1.5tsp of this shou in a brewing basket and gave it a quick rinse with boiling water. Then I added 1.5tsp of the cacao shells, put it in my 10oz tea mug, steeped western-style with boiling water. I did… 4 steeps: 3min, 5min, a long time (I walked away and forgot about it), and 10min. It was really delicious – chocolately and creamy and a bit earthy. I’ve steeped cacao shells with chocolatey black teas like Laoshan Black, and it’s pretty good, but I think this is my favourite combination so far. Highly recommended!
I’m finally breaking into the Wymm Tea samples I got a while back. :) I have to agree with everyone who has complimented the packaging – it’s just lovely. 6g in the gaiwan, one rinse with boiling water, and I think the first steep was boiling too, then 90 degrees after that. A whole bunch of roughly 10 second steeps, and now I’m up to about 20-25 seconds.
This is a lovely clean and fresh-tasting sheng. It causes a bit of tingling on my tongue, maybe a slight bitterness that’s more of a refreshing feeling than anything unpleasant, and then gradually a sweet aftertaste has been building up in the back of my throat. I’m having trouble identifying any specific flavour notes besides “delicious sheng” but I’d say there are definitely some grassy and maybe some fruity notes in there. I’m pretty sure I’m at least 8 steeps in and this is still definitely going strong. Yummmm.