102 Tasting Notes
My dad bought all the Upton Import Lapsang Souchongs he could find and settled on this as his favorite. I thought I’d give it a taste on this Christmas morning. It is smooooooth. I don’t think I’ve drunk a LS this smooth before. Before I knew it, my mug was half empty and I was refilling. The smokyness is subtle but definite, it tastes like enhanced black tea instead of tea that is hiding something.
I am now thinking I need to taste test all the Yunnans or Assams and find my favorite. What would the world do without the scientific method (my dad was a chemist for 40 years) and spread sheets to rate tea. And yet somehow I have survived without a spreadsheet up until now…
Flavors: Smoke, Smooth
I wasn’t sure I liked this on first sip, but it’s grown on me as I’ve experimented with steeping times. I have brewed it with more leaf and longer steeping times to get 4 steeps out of it. It’s a subtle chocolate taste with some yeasty and nutty notes as well. I’m glad I tried it, but I think I prefer more robust flavors and a hint of astringency. For a soothing afternoon cup, it hits the spot and would go well with any holiday cookie!
Flavors: Butter, Chocolate, Nutty, Yeast
This and a bagged Oolong are my go to teas while traveling. If you compare this slightly vanilla and other spices to a loose leaf tea, it’s going to disappoint, but I think it’s one of the more drinkable bagged teas and not as in your face clove and cardamom as some bagged chai. I always seem to have this in my travel bag, so I thought it should be in me cupboard, not that my cupboard actually reflects reality, but I’m trying to get it closer. Vanilla spice will give me an alertness boost, and has a soothing flavor profile, I’ll probably keep reaching for it as a convenient pick me up when I am away from my infuser.
Flavors: Cinnamon, Vanilla
This is a tea to savor and let linger in your mouth. Like some, more delicate teas, it’s an acquired taste, but how can you compare a subtle dark chocolate, caramel after taste to other teas that are in your face grassy or earthy or smoky. You have to sip this one quietly and let the best part bloom in your mouth 20 seconds after you swallow. This is not a daily mug or a sip down, but a gift to be savored when you need reminding that the same camellia sinsensis plant can be processed in so many different wonderful ways.
Flavors: Caramel, Cocoa, Dark Chocolate, Honey
The first steep of this tea is quite yummy, malty cocoa goodness in a cup. The dry leaf looks a bit like chocolate gunpowder tea, the wet leaf smells like hay and cocoa. The problem I have with this tea is the amount of leaf I have to use to get that yummy taste and that the second steep is so watered down it’s like a different cup. I guess I expect this quality of tea to steep at least twice. When I have a light fluffy Oolong, green, or black tea, I don’t mind adding an extra scoop if it will give me a stronger brew. But when I have a dense tea like this, I guess I expect it to unfurl into lots of flavor, and I was just disappointed in this one.
Flavors: Cocoa, Malt
This is my favorite tea from my first SF Herb order. I only got 1/2 pound, but it’s the one I have sipped down the most, and the reason I made a second order. I have yet to over brew with too much leaf or steep too long. This tea is very forgiving and this is a bonus for me as I often over steep tea in my go cup. This tea is smooth and malty with a hint of cocoa. I would not call this complex, and it won’t steep past two steps, but I think it’s great for a daily drinker, and cheap enough to add lots of leaf for a strong morning cup.
Flavors: Cocoa, Malt
I am getting close to the bottom of the bag, and somehow I don’t get a whole lot of cinnamon from this cup. I think most of the cinnamon pieces floated to the top of the bag, and I drank all of them last winter. This is one yummy cinnamon cup of soothing tea for a nice cold day. I think I liked the cinnamon more than the chai taste, which is still nice , but cinnamon says chilly fall days and warming up with a nice cup of tea.
If I get this again I’ll make more of an effort to equally distribute the cinnamon in each cup.
Flavors: Cardamon, Cinnamon, Clove
Not my favorite from the teakruthi samples. The first timed I brewed this I used their instructions and it was a bit weak. The second time I added more leaf and it was still weak, though a bit better than the first time. I don’t taste copper or bitterness, it’s a rather blah cup of tea. Maybe some hints of copper in an aftertaste, but this is not a tea that I would reach for in the morning for a wake me up cup. Now I’m gonna go sip some Assam and get going for the day.
This tea is just ok, not a bad cup, but not very complex either. The wet leaf smells a bit like cinnamon, and it brews up to a nice coppery color. The first steeping was smooth with a bit of a metal tang, but overall, I’m not getting spice or other tastes. It’s like the tea has been smoothed of all it’s rough edges, including copper or astringency. Although it’s quite drinkable, I’m not sure I’d reach for it in the morning, maybe for an afternoon pick me up? I did use a bit more leaf than suggested, and I got some sweeter notes on the second steep, maybe a bit of that cinnamon taste is coming through. The third steep has faint echoes of both metallic tang and slight sweetness.
I brewed this stronger than suggested on the bag, and was happy with a stronger taste than the other teakruthi teas I have tried. The wet leaf smells like orange peels, I didn’t expect that. The first brew is tangy and metallic, but not in a harsh way. It reminds me of an Assam but a bit more complex. I’m not getting the orange I smell in the wet leaf, the first brew is all sharpness and tang. The second brew is softer on the metal tang and I am getting floral honeysuckle notes. The third brew is just weak tea with a copper aftertaste.