159 Tasting Notes
I’ve gone through about ten cups of this over the last week without ever reveiwing it. I think it’s because it’s a ‘social’ tea – I tend to drink it with others.
So, it’s dark, it’s malty, it has a delicious heady pure tea aroma.
It is the essence of tealiness .
And i love it!
The usual story, at a coffee shop. “Have you got any loose leaf tea?”
“Yes, we have chai, green, earl grey, english breakfast or chamomile.”? “Great”
Ok, so I can’t have the Earl Grey, beacuse I’m allergic to it. Can’t have the chai because some chais contain lemon or orange peel, that allergy again. Can’t have the chamomile because it tastes like dried dung beetles and I haven’t lst my mind. Can’t let us tea geeks down by having Englis Breakfast. So it must be green, and hope it’s not too bitter.
The waitress that served it called it Jasmine tea. I told her I’d oredred the green. She said “It’s the same thing”.
If there was any jasmine, it was obliteration by the over steeping, the over-teaing and the boiling water.
I couldn’t actually tell if it was Japanese or Chinese or perhaps grown by industrious penguins in the Arctic Circle.
I added two sugars and couldn’t make it drinkable.
The shopping centre I was at burnt down about 7 years ago. I suspect the arsonist had been served this tea. If so, a justifiable crime in my opinion.
I hate tea bags. But I was given a "Tea Lover’s Gift Pack " which comprised some biscuits and five boxes of tea bags, 8 to a box.
As it happens one of the boxes was empty, which says a lot about their quality control. Most tea merchants are across the idea of putting the stuff in the box.
After the apalling appalingness that so appalled me with their ‘apple green tea’, I was prepared for this one to score single digits too.
But actually, it’s not quite that bad.
It has the classic oolong taste, though it’s slightly stale – but then again so was some loose oolong I bought not that long ago
It’s got that sort of nutty middle taste, sandwiched between the savoury wood taste up front and the lingering almondy flavour.
If anything, as I expected so little flavour, I let it steep maybe a fraction longer than it needed.
I pulled the bag apart and the tea did not look like it was much quality.
The problem with oolongs is that they all tend to be excellent quality, so it’s hard to be too harsh on this. Also, I really try to avoid bags.
Perhaps I’ll put it this way: if you get one of these tea packs, this is the only one I wiouldn’t throw away as soon as the gift giver leaves your sight.
So, this is my favourite tea? And it’s a white? And it’s not Indian? Hard to believe. two months ago I would have laughed at the idea!
I think that the fact that I start the day with this tea means it is the most likely to get logged – I had about 7 cups of various teas yesterday that weren’t. I just don’t get the time.
But still I love it.
I’ve had a bad night, woke up with a migraine aboround 5:30, took some Disprin Forté and awoke at 7am with the taste of salicylates and opiates in my mouth.
Restore me please, oh wonderful tea!
This is a perfectly balanced cup, even though it’s about 450ml.
The liquor firstly cleaned my tongue, before the second sip started stripping the furry feeling from the back of the roof of my mouth.
Third sip and there’s the tea in all its glory. Its slight dry mouthfeel is not quite what I need, but I’ll just have some more.
Now a third of the way down, and I am truly refreshed.
It’s Australia Day, so I have the day off, a wonderful sunny Adelaide Day, it’s 7:20, time to head to the deck, enjoy the early morning breeze, contemplate the leg of lamb that has been marinating for two days, and think about how truly rich my life is.
I’m getting so predicatble – drink this late at night, report it in the moning whilst sipping Pai Mu Tan.
It’s worth noting that I again oversteeped this. It’s not a typical Darj, it’s pretty strong.
Oversteeping does bring on a tobacco-y resonance, but more subtle.
It can hold up from very quickly steeped to about 5 minutes, and even though it changes a lot, it’s good all the way across the spectrum.
To put this in context, the little cafe that I get this from bravely stocks about thirty teas in an area where tea bags and instant coffee are considered acceptable, normal even. (I know, that’s hard to believe)
So, they try.
It’s evident that some teas sell more than others. In this case, I’d suggest the stock does not turn over very often.
Which explains why this was a little stale.
I don’t think it started life as a bad tea at all. There was still that warm oolong length of taste. A slight blossomy effect.
But it had tarred up over time. In the end, I added sugar to make it drinkable
Not recomended, I’m afraid.
OK, I decided to experiment. How far can I go?
First steep – it’s 2pm. We are preparing to go grocery shopping, just a little tea before we go. It’s a warm day.
The Pai Mu Dan helps us get into a calm place before the shopping storm. This first infusion is velvety and sparkly – I’m drinking mine unsweetened. It has some mossy, foresty undertones and a solid white/green tea taste with no bitterness whatsoever.
It’s now 10:10 at night, and my better half has a headache, whereas I’m thirsty. Time for that second infusion.
The tea is doing the trick for both of us. This time, it’s woodier. The small amount of sugar I’ve added gives it almost a honey finish.
It’s now 6am, and I’m up an about, and in severe need of some refreshment. I steep the leaves in almost half a litre of water. Again a small amount of sugar.
A great start to the day. really cleans the palate.
While drinking it, I’m editing a video about it. So I know fancy another cup.
LITTLE BIT OF TIME TRAVEL→
It’s 7am, and the Pai Mu Tan has run out of legs. I’ve used 2 grams, infused more than 1600ml of water through it over two days, and it’s very pale.
The taste is like a supermarket green teas bag, though without the bitterness.
It’s time for these leaves to be returned to the earth. They have given much.
Farewell, sweet tea!