Another surprise, another difficult decision between sample, 50 grams, or 100, and of course, another insane impulse buy.

The tea was more baked than I expected. Dryleaf aroma is immensely smooth, sweet and nutty, leaning heavy onto chestnut and almond. I more or less followed their guidelines 4-5 grams, 5 oz, and some moderately hot water. I could have upped the heat. Horchata immediately emanated from the cups steam, causing my concern I had this too near my flavored teas. Guanyin, though, smiled on me again and that was just the tea. I steeped it for 3 minutes, 20 seconds letting it open up. The gardenia, butter, and chestnut notes are all apt, and the liquor is light and soft, but creamy and sweet with hints of cinnamon and nutmeg in accents. The second brew, some minutes go by, maybe less than the first one as I sip-check and go by smell, is significantly sweeter and leans. Gardenia and honey coat my tongue, and affirm me throwing money at this one.

I didn’t expect a more Dong Ding style kind of Tie Guan Yin, and thought this one would be greener. It still leans more on the green side in the middle, but retains the attention catching florals in tandem with buttery and honeyed aspects of the bake. I do not regret getting 50 grams of this gem, because a high mountain (not Lishan-I was WRONG-READ DAYLON!) Tie Guan Yin is not this easy to find online. The 50 grams tops at $21, which actually is NOT bad at all. I’ve complained about Spirit Tea prices before, and I felt like I paid for what I got this time.

More notes to come of this one indeed.

Flavors: Butter, Chestnut, Cinnamon, Cream, Floral, Gardenias, Honey, Nutmeg

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 15 sec 4 g 5 OZ / 147 ML

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First Off, Current Targets:

Whispering Pines Alice
Good Luxurious Work Teas
Best Sachet Teas
Spring, Winter Taiwan High Mountain Oolongs

Dislikes: Heavy Tannin, Astringency, Bitterness, or Fake Flavor, Overly herby herbal or aged teas

Picky with: Higher Oxidation Oolongs, Red Oolongs (Some I love, others give me headaches or are almost too sweet), Mint Teas

Currently, my stash is overflowing. Among my favorites are What-Cha’s Lishan Black, Amber Gaba Oolong, Lishan Oolong, Qilan Oolong, White Rhino, Kenya Silver Needle, Tong Mu Lapsang Black (Unsmoked); Whispering Pines Alice, Taiwanese Assam, Wang’s Shanlinxi, Cuifeng, Dayuling, Jasmine Shan Lin Xi; Beautiful Taiwan Tea Co.“Old Style” Dong Ding, Mandala Milk Oolong; Paru’s Milk Oolong


I am an MSU graduate, and current alternative ed. high school social studies and history teacher. I formerly minored in anthropology, and I love Egyptian and classical history. I love to read, write, draw, paint, sculpt, fence(with a sword), practice calisthenics on rings, lift weights, workout, relax, and drink a cuppa tea…or twenty.

I’ve been drinking green and black teas ever since I was little living in Hawaii. Eastern Asian influence was prominent with my friends and where I grew up, so I’ve been exposed to some tea culture at a young age. I’ve come a long way since I began on steepster and now drink most teas gong fu, especially oolong. Any tea that is naturally creamy, fruity, or sweet without a lot of added flavoring ranks as a must have for me. I also love black teas and dark oolongs with the elusive “cocoa” note. My favorites are lighter Earl Greys, some white teas like What-Cha’s Kenyan offerings, most Hong-Cha’s, darker Darjeelings, almost anything from Nepal, Green Shan Lin Xi’s, and Greener Dong Dings. I’m in the process of trying Alishan’s. I also tend to really enjoy Yunnan Black or Red teas and white teas. I’m pickier with other teas like chamomile, green teas, and Masalas among several.

I used to give ratings, but now I only rate teas that have a strong impression on me. If I really like it, I’ll write it down.

I’ll enjoy a tea almost no matter what, even if the purpose is more medicinal, for it is my truest vice and addiction.


Michigan, USA

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