14 Tasting Notes


I abuse tea… I have to come to grips with that. Especially work tea, so work tea has special requirements that need to be meet.

1. Must be hardy and not get astringent with over brewing – a common occurrence
2. Must be drinkable hot all the way to room temp/cold (as it cools in the cup)

So first off.. I over brewed this while emailing. oops? It’s not too bitter, yay! Chocolate, tobacco, nice solid cup with a brightness to it… unfortunately, as it cooled, the brightness turned sour. I will have to taste this again when I can be fair and pay more attn to the brew times, but unfortunately for work this one won’t do. I’ll stick with my Upton Hunan Mao Feng which was restocked after I picked up this sample.

Flavors: Dark Chocolate, Sour, Tobacco

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Okay just to put this review into perspective – My first puerh was from the Verdant 5/$5 deal. I wanted to get an idea of what their quality was like before ordering anything. That puerh pleasantly surprised me.. After the initial hit of loamy earth, I really liked the mushroom flavor that dominated the cup and kinda found it addictive. I also cold brewed the leaves after the first infusion and enjoyed that too.

Perhaps I shouldn’t have tried this at work? This is my 3rd foray into the world of puerh. Yay puerh noobie me!!! I received my Upton box of samples last night and tossed this mini into my bag and have just brewed it in a little ceramic office cup/infuser set.

The mini tuo has a slight smokey savory scent to it. Ok, not bad, smells like the green Upton Saiqing mini-tuo last night. Looks nicely packed and smooth.
Tossed it into the infuser and poured hot water over it… uh oh! it started breaking up immediately into very fine fanning like pieces. o.O I’m supposed to rinse this, it’ll all float away!? Alrighty then just do it… and done, whew. Poured more hot water over it and watched the mini crumble like crazy.. omg.. I’m gonna be drinking bits of leaves! They are gonna escape the infuser and I’ll have to check my teeth constantly! The water is having a hard time getting past the leaves to drain… oy? Then panic sets in. This is taking too long.. it’s super dark already.. this is crazy! Go water goooooo!!!!!!! Finally, it’s drained and I can ignore the infuser to peer at the crazy dark cup. Alright, I know.. I know… I was warned about this, this is normal… REALLY. Dang thing is darker than coffee.. I’m so very afraid… do I really want to drink this? I mean, it. could. kill. me. Drink a coffee this dark and bitter is the name of the game. I’m so screwed… JUST DO IT!

Drama aside, I’m drinking it… 1st steep slight smokey flavor and tree bark wood. Not bitter at all! YAY!! For whatever reason, the smoke really reminds me of a snack type food we have here in Hawaii called smoked ika (squid), and I can’t get the association outta my head.. The sediment at the bottom of the cup wasn’t as bad as I feared. I’m grateful that the main flavor is woody with the smoke as an accent.. though the smokey flavor is what I’m carrying in my mouth after the cup is gone. 2nd steep more wood, still strongly flavored and scary dark.

Overall, while not unpleasant, this isn’t really floating my boat. I did feel a little light headed about 1/2 way into the first cup.. when I started typing this review… but I’m not sure if it’s this qi thing folks talk about or just relief that I actually got through steeping and tasting it.. hahaha!! I’m guessing it’s the latter. ;)

Flavors: Smoke, Wood

Boiling 1 min, 30 sec

Mini tuos, just leave them whole and rinse them one time for about 20 seconds. It will be even better if after the rinse just let it sit for half an hour. The water will keep going in after the rinse. I try yo wait on tasting any new puerh for at least a week before drinking. It acclimates and re-hydrates a bit and usually brews a bit better.
You will find the sweet spot.

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Tea reviewing noob here… not new to the drinking but new to trying to analyze it more in depth than just yum and bleh. So bear with me as this is my first review here! O.O
Picked this up during the Black Friday Sale that Tea from Vietnam had (Thank you Steepster for that wonderful thread that kept track of all the sales!)
I’m using a 8 oz ceramic cup with infuser because I’m just not a Gaiwan kinda gal.

This is a beautiful tropical tea. First steep just hits me in the face with a heady floral plumeria aroma. It’s like a good Tieguanyin, but with a different flower, sooo beautiful. The aroma carries through to the brew and I’m sipping on plumerias. The mouth feel is great and very smooth. The 2 and 3 steeps brings out some creaminess and then a fruity papaya aspect. On the 3rd I’m also noticing a astringency creeping in.. my mouth is experiencing a puckering/drying sensation at the sides of my tongue… it’s a weird feeling…. hehe! Probably because I’m over steeping a lil, but it’s still quite yummy and looking at the leaves I can probably get a few more steeps outta this because the leaves haven’t completely unfurled yet.

This oolong falls on the green young fresh side, even though the leaves look a little roasted, it’s not carrying thru to the cup. Don’t judge this tea by the bag sniff… the gorgeous floral aroma cannot be picked up from the dry tea… you have to water it! :D Overall a great cuppa and I’m likely to re-order this and share it with my tea drinking friends. :)

Flavors: Creamy, Flowers, Tropical

1 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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