417 Tasting Notes
Casey really likes this tea, and brewed this first thing this morning. To him, it reminds him of pipe tobacco. I can’t really speak much to this. I can’t remember the last time I’ve smelled pipe tobacco.
I’m not a huge fan of this tea. It definitely tastes like it’s been artificially flavored, and I’m more of a “pure tea” fan. It’s pretty good for a flavored tea, though. It has cocoa notes and maybe a hint of caramel. I’ll keep this in stock for Casey, though.
Ack. I won’t rate this one as I’m not sure how much of the way this tea is is due to the fact that it’s a bit too old and I had opened it and then saved it for months unrefrigerated. Others have mentioned how beautiful this tea is, but my sample is full of lots of small leaf pieces. I honestly don’t think I could have accidentally pulverized it that much. I am very careful with my Verdant samples. However, my cat Xavier did sit in this box briefly.
I have always been disappointed with Dragonwell teas. I don’t think I have had a single good one! I see in videos these beautiful green leaves swirling and unfurling in a pale broth, and then slowly and delicately resting at the bottom of the glass.
The Dragonwells I have made always looked over-oxidized and full broken leaves that turn the water a mostly yellow color. This one did just that and brewed a bitter cup. Oh well.
Wow. The tasting notes were definitely right about the hazelnut in this. I was skeptical about this, but it was the very first thing I smelled. I don’t know if I smell or taste spinach at all, but it definitely has some green vegetal flavors, but they’re buttery and not sour. I overbrewed the second steeping because I am working on my gaiwan technique. My hands are very small (I’m 5’0") and apparently I have been holding the gaiwan incorrectly because of this. :-/ Anyhow, it is a very nice tea.
The first cup I steeped I seriously over-leafed. I had just eaten a big brunch of tofu scramble, avocado, and potatoes and I’d covered everything with nutritional yeast and hot sauce, so I’d thought I’d need a very strong cup of tea to wash it down with.
The first very strong cup I made was intensely fruity, I’d say the flavor was something like a prune or dried apricot. It was also a little bit bitter, but this was the fault of how I brewed it. The second cup was made with fewer leaves, and hence was smoother and I could pick up some earthiness, maybe a bit of whiskey sour (but these notes were very faint compared to the fruitiness). The disappointing thing about this tea is that it doesn’t have a very strong aroma or finish. I was expecting to dump this tea into my big red canister (where the chai masala making tea goes), but I think instead I will try to find a similar tea to add into my regular rotation.
This is pretty nice. I’m trying to get used to teas that are more green and vegetal. I am also getting through a lot of teas I should have brewed sooner. I hope they bring this one back again, although I probably still wouldn’t order too much. There’s spinach in steepings 3 & 4.
I thought I was making another milk oolong when I brewed this up. Oops! I’m going to refrain from rating this one as it was not acquired directly from Teavivre and then stored in less than idea conditions for a year or so (which I also know is getting old for such a green oolong). So, yeah, I’m going to brew the end of this one tonight and maybe add a touch of honey and have it with dinner. Should be rather good that way, but it’s not one to savor.
Tried this one on my lunch break. It was very good. It had just enough fruity sweetness and creaminess. It had only the smallest hint of fresh florals, which I like, but not something I want to be prominent in a milk oolong (as far as the one’s I’ve tasted go). It was also very faint vegetal notes. This is pretty close to the perfect balance of flavors for me.
This was a sample that came with the Republic of Tea catalog.
This one is driving me crazy because the smell of it when it is first brewed is a smell that I recognize, but I can’t quite place. It’s a smell you’d find in a candy shop, I believe, and might be a flavor of salt water taffy, but I’m not at all confident in that. The caramel apple flavor is only really apparent to me in the aftertaste (something like one of those caramel apple lollipops). The apple lacks any tartness, and I like tart apples. There is also a dry woody flavor in the aftertaste, but it’s not strong. Overall, this is a pleasant tea, but flavored teas, and especially rooibos aren’t really my thing so I won’t rate this. Fun to sample, though!