1040 Tasting Notes
This the last of the black teas from teabento that I needed to try. I saved this one for last because it was the reason for the teabento order. There were lots of good reviews for it showing up on my feed.
And again I think it’s just ok – nothing bad, nothing great, just black tea.
I’ve written several “just ok” tasting notes about the teabento blacks I got. I want to clarify my position on these teas as a whole. I don’t want to bash teabento as a company. I can appreciate that these are good quality teas. Someone from the company goes out into the world and tastes a bunch of teas and makes decisions on what to buy and what teas are going to be offered by that company. What I think is happening is that my tastes and that buyers tastes are not the same. We don’t agree on what certain styles of tea should taste like. I don’t want anyone to think that these are bad teas – they just aren’t to my taste. There are other companies out there that sell teas that are more to my taste……
Insane cold today and has been for the last few days and will be for the next several days. Life is just difficult when it’s so cold that it hurts to breathe. I know it’s been really cold across central Canada, so it’s not just us. Be safe out there everyone, this is dangerous cold.
Drinking another one from my teabento order tonight. his is ok – some bitter chocolate, some bread – tastes like a laoshan black should. But it’s still just ok, it tastes as it should but it’s still a little flat or not as bold as it should be or something. There are better laoshan blacks out there.
My boss gave me a cute little cup with infuser as a Christmas gift. I like it but the holes in the infuser let some of the smaller leaves through.
I’ve been laughing at the “extreme weather” warnings on Pokemon Go all week. It’s been cold here but nothing unusual or “extreme”. TODAY those warnings are true. It is dangerous cold out there. I took a 7 minute walk to spin a poke stop and that was more than enough time outside. Earlier today it was -32C + wind something like -42 windchill. The wind has gone down a but but it’s still in the -38C range. Yeah cold.
So I’ve spent most of the day watching Netflix and doing a whole lot of nothing.
Plum Rooster was next on my list of Teabento teas to try. The description of this one sounded really interesting. It is interesting – as in it’s unusual – but it’s another one that just doesn’t work for me. It’s way more fruit juice and not enough black tea. Fruity fruity fruity with a little honey.
So I went in to work for a few hours today to try and not fall too far behind with fiscal year end coming. Who the hell changes the room rate market codes right before a 4 day weekend and doesn’t tell accounting? Where am I suppose to code these? You need to tell me how you want them entered into the management companies system, if you want your month end/year end reports to be correct. So yeah, I was there on my own time, on Christmas Eve just making up reports. I’m going to get shit on because this isn’t right, and it’s going to be a lot of work to move it to where they want them. Furious…….
So I’m home now, lying on the couch with my blankie, with a snuggly cat, hugging a mug of this tea. Yes, I’ve moved onto a mug. I’m not sure if I’ve just been drinking mediocre tea or if this is really good. Either way it is making me happy tonight.
As I was pouring this off the leaves, it just wafted up chocolate. It’s not tasting as chocolate as it smells, but there is some there. Sweet, chocolate, caramel, malt, starch (bread rather than yam) and just plain yumminess. This is a happy tea…..
Happy Panda is not making me happy. Unsmoked Lapsang is one of my favorite styles of black tea. I don’t like this one. It’s just flat. No chocolate, no malt, a tiny bit of fruit. This is just black tea, boring, uninteresting. My least favorite of the teabento blacks I’ve tried so far. That’s disappointing – I should love this one and I don’t…. sad panda….
Red Panda is a beautiful tea. The leaves are large and twisted, the soup is really red
As beautiful as this is, it’s not to my taste. Definitely more like a Taiwan black than a Chinese black. Light, sweet, fruity. A little honey – a lot plum. Don’t oversteep it – brings out more tannin and some bitter.
If you are a fan of this style of tea, you’ll like this. I want something bolder.
(I need more glass teapots…..)
I was drinking Golden Monkey earlier tonight and have moved on to Golden Fox. These leaves are much more golden than the other. This one is a lot lighter – in color, in flavor, in mouthfeel. Way more fruity, way less malty – I’m not getting any chocolate at all.
This is a nice tea, I don’t mind drinking it at all, but Golden Monkey is way more to my taste.
Sil said she thought this one was juicy – I’m going to have to agree with that.
I had a bit of a food misadventure tonight. I was trying to make a lazy/quick jambalaya. I’ve done this several times before, but I of course cook by instinct rather than recipe. I just toss in whatever I think should go in and hope for the best. Most times it works out. Tonight I didn’t add enough liquid before putting it in the oven, so the rice wasn’t cooked properly. At that point the only option is to mix it up, add more liquid and put it back in the oven. This breaks the awesome crust on the bottom and causes the rice to be unevenly cooked. Oh well, it’s ok but not quite what I was hoping for.
So while dinner was taking twice as long as it should have to cook… I drank several cups of this tea. I was a little disappointed that the leaf wasn’t more golden. There are some golden tips but I was expecting lots of gold. Doesn’t matter – this is a great tea. Lots of chocolate notes, some starch, some malt, a little fruit. It’s deep, dark, and awesome. I really like this one.
I don’t think I mention, or post many photos of my test tube steeper. I really like it and use it often. It’s great for doing a bunch of quick steeps. I normally do a bit of a modified gongfu. Steeps of 20 – 40 – 1 min – 1.5 min – something like that. I normally just watch the color and stop when it looks right. This being clear glass is awesome for that. It doesn’t burn your fingers and you don’t need a pitcher or strainer, so less cleanup.
I’m sitting here watching the hockey game, wondering why I haven’t opened my X-mas gift from my boss. It’s sitting here on the coffee table. I haven’t opened it because she doesn’t believe in opening gifts before 25Dec. She would never know if I opened it early or not. Why am I not opening it? Why am I even pondering it? Must be too much bourbon in the tea…..
Brutal cold out there tonight. Staying in drinking Low Country with honey bourbon.
I really need to be drinking more pu’erh. I really like shou and I’m not sure why I don’t drink it more often. Maybe it’s because I think it’s difficult – break a chunk off the cake, boiling water, rinse, rest, rinse, short steeps, taste, repeat. Way too much work for tea when I just want to sit in front of the TV and watch the hockey game.
So…… umm yeah. I did a couple of steeps, tasted it, then did a bunch of steeps and dumped them all together into a huge mug. Yeah that’s not how you are suppose to do it, but whatever – I don’t want a serious session, I just want to drink tea.
This isn’t a dark and I would have expected. It’s shou, it’s what I was expecting, but just not as deep as I thought it would be. Dunno, I like it.
This is my – I’m pretending to be drinking this gongfu style – photo. (I did steep it all in this pot and increased the time as if I was doing gongfu, but then just dumped it into a mug rather than drinking it steep by steep)