Whispering Pines Tea Company

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82

Sipdown! I’ve been drinking this fairly regularly for the last week or so, and I could have sworn I’d written a note on it, but I guess not… This is an unusual one because, at least to me, it’s very chocolatey but low in malt. The chocolate predominates, and there’s some sourness alongside woody notes of pine, cedar and a hint of smoke backing it up. The sip ends on a whisper of nuttiness, maybe even coconuttiness, which lends a little sweetness to what is primarily a fairly savoury tea, even with the chocolate notes. Is it weird for me to say that this reminds me of a sexy men’s cologne? There are certain colognes which smell delicious, and this tea tastes like those smell even though it doesn’t actually smell like cologne (and tastes way better than they would!) I don’t know, it’s just a feel I get from this tea. Sexy man smell. Lol. Anyway, thanks Sil for sending me a very generous sample of this tea! It’s helped me to pinpoint that some things I like in a single origin black, and some teas I might pick up again in the future.

204/399

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 20 OZ / 591 ML

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98

this is just /chef’s kiss/

malty, creamy, bittersweet chocolate-y it does remind me a little of Ancient Spirit which is a good thing bc that is my absolute favourite tea. I was so excited to see this sample in my last WP order and am patiently waiting for this to be restocked.

edit, here is a nice song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=abKBYZX_1sM

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sip down. goddamn I regret only getting an ounce of this.

derk

I never even saw this one. Lucky u.

Whispering Pines Tea Company

Another batch hitting the site right now ;)

derk

Take my money!

annie

@derk, do ittttt! I think you will love it.

@Whispering Pines, I had signed up for the email notification for it and have already enjoyed more :) ALSO thank you so much for the sample of Red Temple, it was one I really wanted to try bc Ancient Spirit is my favourite tea ever, but it was out of stock when making my most current order!

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96

I thought I tried this one before. Anyway.

There are so many teas in my backlog. Most of them, I need to add to steepster myself. Cheers to trailblazing!

I hesitated on this one for a while since I was not quite sure how I felt on Jasmine Blacks. They tend to be too malty for me personally, but I given how smooth the Golden Snail is, I’d give it a try. I have only brewed it very lightly via western with 3-5 grams in 8-12 oz, but my initial times tend to be between two and three minutes, and then I add 30-45 seconds, and then minutes afterwards. I have gotten between 4-6 solid cups followed by fainter ones. I can see this as an easy Gong Fu tea, but I’ve been working a lot online (TEACHING), and have needed French press to power me through sessions.

First of all, this is a very well balanced tea, and naturally extremely creamy, sweet, and dense with jasmine flavor. The body is viscous, but not overwhelming thick or malty. Like other reviews, I could still taste the sweet potato and cherry malt underneath the jasmine. The cocoa nib notes a little bit more subdued, but they are there. Middle brews give me caramel notes, and later ones lean to honeysuckle from the black tea rather than the jasmine. The first and second steep remind me of buttercream frosting due to its voluptuous sweetness. Sometimes it reminds me of cantaloup, but I point that to the sensation when my buds go from Jasmine to black tea.

When I bought it, I had a hard time deciding if I wanted to buy more Lorien, or more of this one. I wanted the Nepal Gold, but it was sold out right when I went to go through checkout. So I doubled on Lorien because Jasmine Whites are my favorite, and if White Lotus was any indicator of Brenden’s tastes, Lorien would be really good because he topped it above Lotus. So I got less of this one…though I wanted to add more. Curse expenses and my propensity to diversify my Dragon’s Horde of Tea!

So, after trying both, I like both equally, but I prefer the Jasmine to tea ratio on this one’s taste. Lorien can be perfumy if you ever brew it like I did the first time, and I like that this jasmine is not nearly as vegetal, but better yet, not super malty or astringent if you brew it lighter. I like that I can taste both tea and jasmine, and this is the perfect pick me up tea. I used it before work this morning to power through parent phone calls (I HATE talking on the phone), and sustained me through my meeting.

Only complaints:
1. Expense (WHICH IS ALWAYS THE CASE, BUT I SUPPORT BRENDEN AND HOLY CRAP DOES THIS ONE HAVE A HIGH DEMAND)

2. Longevity. Lorien’s main advantage over this one is that it yields more cups than this one. It can start to get week around cup 4-5 whereas my other teas tend to get weak at 6-7 western. It’s honestly a nitpick that depends on my leaf ratio.

3. Strength. This is easy to avoid and not a complaint from me, but I can see some people not liking this one because of the florals. It’s balanced enough to win people over and jade them to other Jasmine teas, but if you up the leaf too much, the Jasmine could get to your stomach. It’s more forgiving than most black teas, but it’s still a black tea, and can get astringent if it is over done.

I personally did not entirely picture Alice when I drank it unlike the Jabberwocky, Rivendell, or Lorien, but after reading the notes I can see it depending on how I picture it. When Alice drinks tea at the Mad Tea Party, I always imagine something more British like a breakfast tea, but then thrown in with something whimsical. The jasmine is more otherworldly than whimsical for me. But when I picture her with the caterpillar or with the flowers, this blonde tea makes more sense (ironic because I picture her more as a Brunette in the books over the blonde in the series). This little Geek rant has nothing to do with my enjoyment of the tea though, and Alice is one of the best blends that Whispering Pines has had. I like it more than Earl Gold, but that’s personal preference.

Flavors: Cantaloupe, Caramel, Frosting, Honey, Honeysuckle, Jasmine, Malt, Smooth, Sweet, Sweet Potatoes

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92

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92

So good! Rich and chocolatey, quite easy to drink.

Kawaii433

Yes, yes this one is so yummy <3

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Good morning :) I realized today I hadn’t made a bacon and eggs breakfast since moving from the city. I flipped my egg and it flopped under the range grate. What the heck? At least the smokey bacon covered up the smell of burning albumin on the grate. I ate the egg anyway.

Been a while since a song pairing.
The Diamonds — Little Darlin’
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysVLzXWnTzA
The share timer function on youtube isn’t working for me. 1:38 is where it starts.

This group came up at work Saturday after one of my older coworkers received a phone call Friday from Tommy Smothers of the Smothers Brothers to chat about the pandemic.

Needed a sweet tea to pair with a salty, savory breakfast. You wouldn’t think mushrooms would be the solution but these are candy cap mushrooms. Pure maple syrup without the sugar. The aroma is so dense and penetrating, I had to store the swap from ashmanra (thank you!) in a mason jar. No added flavorings to create what smells like a maple syrup soaked buckwheat pancake. As for the taste, I honestly don’t think I could paint a better picture than Brenden (the owner of Whispering Pines) did in his description for this tea. It’s more a malty and mineral cleansing taste perfect for cutting the bacon grease. The aroma gives an impression of strength in sweetness but it’s actually lightly sweet. Cocoa-vanilla hangs out up by my sinuses. Notice the cherry on the swallow after it cools down a bit.

This is how you do a maple-flavored tea.

Hope y’all are doing ok today. Two of my friends are ill, one in Ohio and one in Seattle.

Have another song, why not.
Red Hot Chili Peppers — Tear
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9OzjUuB3WHo

Flavors: Cherry, Cocoa, Earth, Grain, Malt, Maple Syrup, Mineral, Mushrooms, Oak wood, Pancake Syrup, Vanilla

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 295 ML
ashmanra

Like seriously a real phone call from the real Tommy Smothers? Are you kidding me? Yes, I am old enough to fan girl over the Smothers Brothers! My parents watched their show and I thought they were awesome!

ashmanra

Oh, and I am so glad you liked the tea! And I sing that song a lot, I really like it. I need the sun. It is like a happiness drug for me. I am a little bummed that we are having this cloudy rainy weather right now when I really need to be out there soaking up some rays in my wee garden.

tea-sipper

I hope your friends feel better quickly. :/

mrmopar

Hope everyone stays well and those who are sick have a speedy recovery.

gmathis

I don’t know why your egg story made me remember, but someday when you need a laugh, I will have to tell you the slug-in-the-stove story from early days of marriage.

ashmanra

Gah! How did I miss the line that two friends are ill? Have they tested positive for Covid19? Prayers for all!

Martin Bednář

I feel sad for your friends! I hope they recover quickly!
Great song pairings too. I just wonder why it is called willow when it is maple like. But that is not important at all.

gmathis

OOH!!!! I missed the Tommy Smothers thing! Everything ashmanra said!

gmathis

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UR39tRbDcBk (One of my favorite little contemporary Smothers Brothers bits)

derk

ashmanra: Yep, Tommy Smothers. I haven’t yet found out how they know each other. It’s rainy here, too. Come October, I’ll be cursing the 6 months of California sun even though deep down I love it.

gmathis: Thanks for sharing :) Also, I might need a laugh soon.

tea-sipper, mrmopar, Martin: thank you. My friend in Seattle didn’t bother getting tested but he has recovered. The virus claimed the life of one of his coworkers at a very large company. I imagine it’s spreading through the facility. My other friend in Ohio who works at a grocery store, her news is a relief. It was an ear infection that caused her fever.

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61

This smells incredibly chocolatey, to the point where I had to check if there was something added to it. Flavor-wise, it’s not nearly as chocolatey (which was a bit of a disappointment). There’s an underlying bitterness that’s coming through no matter how I steep it.

On a side note- this coronavirus situation has become quite scary. My store has closed for at least 2 weeks (I’m very lucky to still be getting a paycheck during the closure), and my boyfriend’s show was already on hiatus. So, we’ve been staying home with our cats. I’m picking up a foster cat today as well. I’ve been drinking lots of tea as a distraction.

AJRimmer

I was supposed to cat sit, but the person ended up staying home, so coronavirus even cancelled my cat time :P

tea-sipper

When you say “show” and you live in LA… Do you mean TV and what does he do? I’m curious now. :D

amandastory516

@AJRimmer- oh no! Perhaps there’s a kitty at a shelter that needs a foster for the time being!

amandastory516

@tea-sipper- He’s a union Assistant Editor! He’s most recently been working on a DC show :)

tea-sipper

Oh cool, the same DC shows I watch maybe? :D

amandastory516

Legends of Tomorrow! :)

tea-sipper

Ah! My favorite one. :D

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62

It’s quite rainy out (a rarity for Los Angeles), which has been making me crave black teas. I generally like more malty/chocolate forward black teas, and for some reason I was expecting that from this. However, I got quite the opposite. Very bready, with some mild floral notes. I’m finding it to be a bit astringent, with a particular acidic feeling in the throat. It’s okay, not something I’d really want again.

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90

In a word, delicious! Makes a smooth, easy-to-drink cup. Not too weak, not too strong, just right! The re-steep was just as good as the initial cup. Really enjoyed this one. Offered my Mom a cup of this as well and she also loved it so it’s double approved!

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71

This tea was super interesting! Smelled very strongly of stone fruits out of the pouch, but I didn’t get a hint of that in the flavor. The initial flavor is very charcoal-forward, but became much more chocolatey as it cooled.

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Extremely charcoal, roasty flavors. Strong minerality and wet rock notes.

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94

Just finished up my first 1oz bag of this beauty, and I can’t get enough. The fresh vegetal flavor has developed into this insanely gorgeous floral bouquet. I have to agree with previous reviewer, Linda, this tea smells like lilacs. I too have never experienced this flavor in tea form before, but it’s magnificent. I can’t get enough of this.

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94

I was watching some tea vlogs this morning, and one talked about using tea leaves in cooking. I haven’t really experimented with using tea in savory dishes (outside of tea eggs and Busmese tea salad), and was suddenly very struck with the urge to experiment. Having already enjoyed a pot of this Spring Jade Tieguanyin from Whispering Pines and finding it very vegetal and savory, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to experiment. I cooked up some garlic rice, made a quick sauce, poached an egg, and flash fried the tea leaves in some sesame oil. Turned out delicious! A super quick meal that I’d be happy to eat more often. I love being able to use the remaining tea leaves, rather than just tossing them. Next time, I’ll be adding some fresh veggies as well.

Martin Bednář

That actually sounds so tasty!

tea-sipper

Awesome idea.

amandastory516

It came out quite good, would definitely recommend!

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I was excited about the prospect of a really dark tea with some chocolatey notes from the cocoa nibs, but I’m just getting musty/fishiness. I did 2 rinses, but I’m still getting a mustiness, and no chocolate notes at all. I’ll have to revisit this at another time.

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No notes yet. Add one?

Flavors: Astringent, Chocolate

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 8 min or more 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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91

This time around is much, much better. 200F, 2min. Tastes like crystallized sugar and sweet potatoes

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91

Summer 2019. Just received this in my Whispering Pines order, and I’m not really getting any of the natural sweetness and honey flavor that I was anticipating. I’m getting more of a savory, rye bread note. It’s not bad by any means, just not what I was expecting. I’ll have to try this again in the next few days with a different brewing method to see if that makes a difference.

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87

No bitterness or astringency to be found. Smooth, creamy, malty goodness. Has a distinctly raisin flavor. Almost like a chocolate raisin bread (is that a thing people eat?).

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Chocolate, Dried Fruit, Raisins

tea-sipper

It SHOULD be a thing… or chocolate dried cranberry bread. whoa.

amandastory516

Oh my. That sounds delightful!

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