359 Tasting Notes
This morning was a busy one…I was under a lot of stress and had to run around for several hours.
When I got home, the only thing in my mind was…TEA!
If you’re like me, you try to match the right tea for the right moment. Sometimes it takes me forever to decide. Not today. I wanted comfort, and I knew exactly that good old Earl would take care of me.
I say “Good old Earl” but thats not accurate. This Earl is the next generation.
Yes people, TNG Earl!
What makes it so special? Well, first let’s talk about the base tea found in earl grey teas in general. There isn’t much to talk about, right? What I’ve noticed is no one seems to really care…cause…bergamot. What I mean is, if you’re like me, when you need a bergamot fix, you’re not looking for some fancy black tea…you only care for the bergamot cause you know it pretty much overwhelms any kind of base anyways. So why bother right? That’s the impression I get from what’s available on the market. We get some generic black tea and what makes or breaks it is the quality of the bergamot. What I want is an earl grey that will provide a good balance of the bergamot flavor. I don’t want that overly parfumy and soapy taste they sometimes have. Luckily, I found a few brands that made me very happy over the years and just stuck to them.
When I saw Earl Gold, I said…really Brenden? You’re gonna “waste” some snaily yums on bergamot?
And then I tasted it…and said…damn it Brenden, must you succeed at everything?
Apparently, the answer to that is yes!! He truly is a master blender.
I already love Golden Snail a great deal on its own. But I was so sure everything I love about it would vanish under the oppressive bergamot. Turns out they both complement each other perfectly!
Malt, caramel, chocolate and bread? Please meet citrus and candied orange peel.
A very bright, sweet and warming cup of tea with a big kick.
It is suggested to drink it gonfu so I did try. Surprisingly, the bergamot oil doesn’t rinse off on first steep, it actually stays present through the whole session.
But I must admit, my personal brewing preference for earl grey tea will remain mug style. I just want a huge big fat mug of it and hold it and slurp it slowly while I read a good book. That’s what this tea is to me…a hugger :-)
I’m so happy I’ve got four ounces in the cupboard. It will definitely be one of my favorite comfort teas of the winter!
P.S. When you get this tea at home (cause I know you will, you MUST) please don’t skip the “inhaling protocol”. Beleive me, your nostrils will thank you.
Flavors: Baked Bread, Caramel, Chocolate, Citrus, Malt, Orange
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New oolong players, Taiwan Sourcing!
First to review this it seems…
Pretty dark roast, this oolong surprisingly does not overwhelm with “roastiness”, no burnt taste.
The first note I got was cannabis… How do I know what cannabis tastes like? Well…i’ll leave that to your imagination ;-)
Eucalyptus follows….A fresh mouthfeel.
Dried fruit sweetness as well. A caramel feel, thickness in the mouth.
It rendered many steeps.
The liquor is this amazing amber bronze color, it does wear its name pretty well.
A beautiful tea.
I must say I’m very impressed with the quality I have found in Taiwan Sourcing products so far. With Scott Wilson (Yunnan Sourcing) behind it, why am I not surprised?
Good luck to them! I’m officially a fan :-)Pics:
I drank Crimson Lotus Whispering Sunshine 2015 raw puerh for the second time. I’ll admit that the first time around, it missed the mark for me. It was too subtle for my liking, but i decided to give another try two weeks later.
The first time, as usual i couln’t help myself and drank it the same day that it arrived. Well I guess it needed some time to air after shipping cause this second time around is lovely!
Very clean as young sheng should be, but with very little astringency. There is a certain bite to it which i love but it’s very light. It’s grapey and apricoty, sweet and a little citrusy with a nice vegetal feel.
It also gave me a pretty strong head buzz which lasted throughout the whole session. I lost count of how many steeps i did.
Now i’m a little puzzled about something…i read somewhere that it was smokey. I am not a fan of smoke in general and trust my taste buds, i will find smoke if there is some to find. I got absolutely none in this, which was fine by me. Just a super clear and clean liquor.
I really enjoyed it and i’m glad I have a whole cake.
Hi everyone! Remember me? Miss y’all!! ;-)
Not gonna lie…I’ve had a few shopping sprees at Crimson Lotus in the last few months.
Yeah, yeah…I need a good spank!
But to my defense, I will say this: I don’t regret any of it. Top notch quality in the tea and the little pots. Yes, CL does know how to feed my addictions!
Now this tea. My friend MzPriss, who has exquisite tastes, bought this Bulang before I did and she was so excited about it, I could not pass on it since her and I are Teaplets and usually have the same tastes. She was right.
Since it comes in a gigantic brick, they sell it to you in chunks of 250g.
I used 12g for 170ml Jian Shui pot.
After the rinse, I can already tell this will be a treat. The smell is amazing.
Forget traces of barn, seaweed or leather that can be found occasionally in shou puerh. Think more “Caramel alert”. It’s sweet. And it takes over my mouth in a swirl of texture and body.
Yes, I will call this decadent. Creamy with notes of vanilla and dried fruits.
Laters steeps bring some cocoa but not the bitter type…it’s very mellow.
BONUS: it provides a nice relaxing qi, yes i feel like a noodle, and i like it.
Dexter the Dobe is looking at me funny cause I’m a little giddy and he feels it. yes, Momma is high on tea again!
This is something I will be craving. I’m glad I went for the 250g bag instead of the sample.
Now I’ll just close my eyes and dream of getting the 2 kilo brick!!
Pics of the session:
Greens have arrived at Whispering Pines!
Green teas aren’t usually my go to teas and I’m quite critical of them. I don’t like the grassiness and overly vegetal taste they often have.
Having said that, I do appreciate some of them, dragonwell being my favorite.
When I received this maojian to sample, I was really excited and curious about it. We all know that Brenden settles only for the best so if he decides to sell something, I have high expectations for it.
This tea doesn’t disappoint.
Perfect vibrant green leaves, they look like mini longjing sticks.
I used gongfu brewing method.
First steep and wow! How to describe it?
This is not your typical grassy green. It’s very sweet and fresh at the same time.
I get a sweet minty taste, with notes of artichokes maybe. Asparagus might be noticeable as well, those fresh crunchy asparagus you get early spring.
None of the seaweed saltiness often associated with greens.
Anise is present, but very very subtle. I feel that at the tip of my tongue.
I forgot steep three and it steeped for a good 3 minutes. I was expecting bitterness. But it seems impossible to mess up this tea, it was still sweet and delicious.
Warning though: this will provide some kick ass energy boost. DO NOT DRINK AT NIGHT like I did the first time I had it…Let’s just say I felt woozy for a while!!! ;-)
I’m very happy with this green, it’s a keeper!
Thanks for the generous sample Brenden :-)
A little pretentious?
Sure…you don’t name something Ambrosia if you’re lacking confidence. And this tea is everything…and then some.
The look, the color, the smell, the taste, it’s all heaven. Angels signing in my cup. Mozart’s requiem. Powerful stuff.
The brew is a crimson liquid gold…Oh Dian Hong, how I love you.
The addition of handcut vanilla (side bar: did I write “handcut”? Yes I sure did! This is no vanilla flavor, it’s vanilla. Period. No extract, no essence. Vanilla. Pure. In its original form, just like in all the WP blends. This fact needs to be mentioned and appreciated. End of side bar)
So yeah, as I was saying, the addition of vanilla brings undeniable distinction and sophistication.
The first sip and I’m like “hello, maple syrup”! If like me you’ve added a tad of maple to your black tea from time to time, you’ll get what I’m saying.
It’s sweet and malty. A maltiness that makes me so happy.
It’s a bit woody, and fruity…I get some cherry notes, but it’s very subtle.
If you wonder how it compares to the other Vanilla Dream black tea blends, this is what I have to say in a nutshell:
Golden Orchid is gooey fudge, Cocoa Amore is chocolate covered cherries, Elderwood is floral vanilla and Ambrosia is maple malt. There.
B-Boy, you couldn’t have chosen a better name for it…this is tea for the Gods, it’s blended to purrrfection.
Now I need to hit the “shitload” order button again….sigh.
This is new. Thank you Tea Hobbit for letting me try it.
I know it’s a mission at Whispering Pines to search for the finest teas, the best among the best.
This tea represents just that. Mission acccomplised.
First sip and I’m in awe.
So sweet, it reminds me of barley sugar candies.
It’s a malty cup, creamy smooth with no astringency. It tastes a little bit like wheat to me.
It’s woody but not smokey at all wich I appriciate a lot.
It’s slightly fruity, I get stone fruit at the end of the sip.
It feels powdery and syrupy in the mouth, nice body.
It’s so good, I need to buy a shitload of it. Yes…more. Please and thank you.
Don’t be afraid to get this one dear tea lovers :-)
On a side note, a friend brought me to this amazing Chinese gift shop today and I found the most beautiful statue to decorate my tea table…she blessed my tea session today I think.
Wow…got TeaAve sample box today. I mean…I feel almost guilty not having paid for any of this. It’s beyond any expectations. Fancy and classy.
Really TeaAve, thank you, you really made my day!
I love pretty much all types of oolongs, and this one is no exception.
First the look. OB is a stunning tea to look at. It’s like an autumn bouquet, beautiful auburn, green, grey and brown leaves.
I was happy to see the silver duvet tips in the blend, so pretty.
This tea is bug bitten, so hello honey sweetness!
It’s very fragrant, and the scent is even more powerful using the beautiful aroma teacup set provided by TeaAve.
The color of the brew is a beautiful honey golden color.
The taste of OB resembles more of a black tea in my humble opinion. It is after all highly oxidized.
I get red fruits, muscatel, citrus and honey. Very sweet and zero astringency.
As the steeps evolve, it gets a little spicy and boozy, i also get dried fruits, like apricot and dates. It’s rich and doesn’t loose any of its sweetness.
I did many steeps and couldn’t help looking at the wet leaves when I was done. I found the perfect example of leafhopper bites! See pics :-)
TeaAve and Heidi, thanks again for such a lovely gift…can’t wait to purchase your wonderful teas!
It deserves all the praises.
Just a quick review cause I have fully reviewed it in the past.
Rivendell gives me a pudding mouth. It’s so sweet and creamy!
This vanilla is decadent…very fragrant, velvety and fruity.
I like the little saltiness I get at the end of every sip. Mineral notes from the oolong.
Surprisingly, this is not floral at all for a green oolong blend. That’s probably because of the cedar leaves. They bring a touch
of spiciness and evergreen. Hard to describe but so fresh and yummy.
Even if you’re not a fan of greener oolongs, you should still give this a try.
I brewed it in my glass pot and sipped 32 oz very slowly…it was pure ecstasy at every sip.
I’m not lowering my rating, well worth 100!!