78 Tasting Notes
This Assam is ok. Its easy to brew too strong and get a bitter cup. Though when you get the right amount of leaf, its a fair example of a malty, coppery cup of Assam. It does have a bit of a metallic aftertaste that is more pronounced with too much leaf, but becomes less pronounced as a cup cools. On the whole, I’d call this drinkable but I wouldn’t rush to purchase or call it a daily drinker.
Flavors: Malt, Metallic
I’m not sure if this blend has changed, but I’m getting mostly grassy, yeasty Darjeeling in my cup with a slight metallic aftertaste. There’s not a whole lot of maltyness here or astringency either. I guess I expect a more bracing cup from a ‘Scottish Blend’, but what I’m tasting is maybe a bit fruity or floral, but I certainly wouldn’t call it bracing or robust. The second steep is just a weaker version of the first steep. I might try with more leaf, but I think this blend is not for me.
Flavors: Floral, Grass, Yeasty
While this blend is an interesting mix of black oolong and lapsang souchon, it doesn’t bring out the best of each tea, but rather mutes the taste of each. In the first steeping the oolong lends a weird tangy aftertaste and the smoky lapsang is rather weak. What seems like a possible fusion to create a sweet yet smoky blend is not very complex and what I taste is a weakly smoky fishy cup of tea. The second steep isn’t any better, just weaker. Not a fan of this blend.
Flavors: Fishy, Smoke, Tangy
I can’t say I’m usually impressed with Assam/Darjeeling blends, but this one is very drinkable. It gets interesting coppery metalic notes from the Assam and has a nice sweet, honey-floral finish. It’s not a strong, bracing breakfast tea, but still good enough to call it a daily drinker. I wouldn’t call this complex, but a blend of the best of both types of tea. It stands up well to a second steeping and is the kind of tea I’d use to introduce to folks that think all black tea is bitter. Its not the best S&V has to offer, but I’ll probably purchase this again.
Flavors: Floral, Honey, Metallic
The dry leaf smells like honey and orange. The first steeping is more orange, but not a strong citrusy orange, more like a muted creamsicle orange. It’s rather creamy and maybe a clove note too. If you don’t like orange you’ll probably not like this tea. It’s grown on me a bit, I like it more now than when I first tried it. The second steep, however, is much more clove and not much orange lingering. I’m not sure I’d get this again, but I’ll try to enjoy the sipdown.
Flavors: Clove, Honeysuckle, Orange
There is nothing subtle or delicate about this tea. It’s not very complex, astringency and metallic tastes dominate. Not any lingering maltyness going on here. But I like this tea for what it is, a strong robust cup when I want a morning jolt of caffeine and a taste that will standup to any spicy breakfast burrito. I’d call this a daily drinker though I’d certainly get bored if I drank it every day. I will continue to reach for this when I want a bracing morning cup as I know what to expect, it goes well with cinnamon and lemongrass too.
Flavors: Astringent, Metallic
From the TTB
This was a creamy, earthy shu puerh that lasted several steepings. It was a bit weak for the first few steeps, I manually separated the nuggets per the suggestion of another reviewer, and that certainly helped subsequent steepings. I get some camphor, mineral, as well as creamy, buttery and vanilla notes. This was a smooth, interesting shu and was a fun gongfu session.
From the TTB
I’ve tasted smoky oolongs before and floral oolongs before, but I cant quite remember when an oolong was both smoky and floral at the same time. I did short steeps to start, and the first few steeps had lots of smoky notes and a few floral, orchid notes. The subsequent steeps were mostly floral. This was an interesting, complex tea, almost like two different teas rolled into one.
Flavors: Char, Floral, Smoke
From the TTB
Yum, this tastes like a bit of banana bread with chocolate as an aftertaste. It smells like banana, and I get some creamy butter in there too. Thanks Inkling for including this in the TTB! I loved Butiki’s banana walnut butterscotch, and this tea reminds me of that one. I like that this tea has different layers, though I’m not getting much walnut. It’s buttered banana bread to start and dusted cocoa to finish.
Flavors: banana, Butter, Cocoa