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Recent Tasting Notes
This is the first time I’ve had another tea resemble a Darjeeling without being one. There is no dry aroma but it does have a nice wet aroma with various wet wood smells. It has the muscatel notes but the presence of woody notes is stronger. The steep time is finicky. Two minutes is fine but I felt like it needed a bit more so I left it in longer. But it ended up being a bit too long. Luckily this is my second cup so I know this slight tannic flavor and astringent feeling are only due to the over steeping. Wet wood and forest floor after a rain. Just a brisk rain, not a heavy downpour. Can be steeped up to two times but the third infusion lost a lot.
Advent day 20. This smells so yummy and almondy, but also screams hibiscus. I decided against pitching it out and tried cold steeping it instead. It was fun watching the red hib death emit slow red curls into the cup until the whole cup looked like a shark attack. I tasted it, expecting to hate it, but that hate never came. I don’t exactly like it, but whatever hot water does to turn hibiscus into a gross bitter iron flavored mess didn’t happen full force in the cooler water. I get a tart apple with cranberry and almond. I almost like it!
It’s that time of year again. Seasons are changing and I’ve come down with the sniffles, a sore throat, and all that good stuff. Since my sense of taste and smell are inhibited, I decided to skip the more delicate teas and sip down some of my less loved ones. I’d been sitting on this teabag sample my dad gave me for a year or so. He shops at TeaGschwender often but only drinks black tea so all his non-black tea samples gets passed down to me.
I brewed this in an 8oz mug for 90s at 170 F and a second time for 30s using 190 F water. The liquor was light amber in color with the barest tinge of green. Not the vibrant green that’s characteristic of sencha. A sign that this tea was past peak freshness. The brewed tea was decidedly savory; smooth and lacking any astringency. Vegetal with a cashew like creaminess and smoky flavor that reminded me of roasted eggplant. It didn’t have the typical grassiness or oceanic taste that most Japanese green teas do. Despite the atypical flavor and lack of freshness, it was still decent for a bagged tea and helped calm my sniffles.
Flavors: Creamy, Smoke, Vegetal
I grabbed this one from the Discovery teabox a while ago. It was one serving and I was intrigued. It also appears I added this to Steepster twice. Whoops. I love maple. I was worried this would be full of rooibos, but my sample at least had hardly a piece of rooibos in it. The scent of the dry leaves doesn’t smell like maple to me, but the brew certainly is. Definitely accurate maple. Not too much and the maple flavor seems to be at the top of the cup. As it cools, it might be the base tea flavor, it starts tasting like cherry. There are also plenty of walnut leaves here (which I thought were blackberry leaves for some reason.) I’m not sure what walnut leaves SHOULD taste like (maybe it’s cherry?), but I’m not tasting walnut. The second steep had more of the cherry flavor and really no maple but it’s a nice natural cherry note. I do like the combination of the cherry black tea with maple flavors though. It was great to try this one. I wouldn’t mind having a bit of it around.
Steep #1 // 1 1/2 teaspoons for a full mug // 10 minutes after boiling // 3 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 4 minute steep
2019 Sipdowns: 18
Flavors: Cherry, Maple