415 Tasting Notes
So my husband is significantly reducing/ cutting out coffee. He’s always enjoyed tea I make him but now I am getting him all prepped to make tea on his own. I put loose leaf tea in paper filters and write instructions on the side of the tin on how to make them perfect. So far, so good!
I bought some black teas since I figured he’s used to drinking coffee so he needs more of a boost than just green teas (plus I know they are too finicky for him at 5am for when he’s getting ready for work). Thus, black teas it is. I went to iHOT because I know they have good quality & reasonably priced stuff. I bought this lemon flavoured black tea actually for iced tea, but he’s been drinking is hot & cold, and he loves it. I’ve even tried a sip or two here and there (I can’t REALLY drink black tea because it hurts my stomach) and I must say, this blend is creamy, lemony, and delicious without astringency. I will absolutely be stocking this one up for him.
For hot tea: approx 1.5tsp, 200F water, 3min.
Iced tea: 5 “perfect spoonfuls” (DAVIDs TEA measurement = 2.5tsp each) per 2L pitcher, cold brewed 12ish hours.
I will not be adding this one or any black teas to my cupboard because I will not be personally drinking them whatsoever.
Flavors: Creamy, Lemon
A re-review of this tea
I used to think this was the best green tea ever; now after having some tea from Verdant the bar has been truly raised and my opinion changed. Gyokuro Yamishiro is buttery and vegetal, but not nearly as Mrs. Li’s Shi Feng Dragonwell. Unlike Mrs. Li’s tea, this tea is unfortunately very temperamental , needing the lowest temperature on my kettle (160F) and even then you need to be very careful of the measurement of the leaf and steeping time, lest you get a bitter cup. I do not like greens that are prone to bitterness, and unfortunately because Gyokuro Yamishiro is broken leaves (not whole), that is the case.
Do I still enjoy this tea? Yes, when brewed carefully. Is it the best green tea I’ve ever had? Nope. Is it worth the price? Not in my opinion. For a few dollars more I’d rather buy stuff from Verdant, even with the wait time and exchange rate. For that reason the only “premium” tea from DAVIDs I’m interested in is Butterfly Jasmine. That tea is a work of art.
Flavors: Butter, Vegetal
I really wanted to have a jasmine tea that didn’t have caffeine, so I found an etsy store that sells the dried flowers. I bought 50g, and wow, it’s so light I got 2 tins worth!
I’ve tried this tea a few ways: straight up, mixed with straight green tea and also with decaf vanilla sencha. I find when I mixed the flowers with another tea it didn’t produce what a normal jasmine green tea tastes like. I think when normal jasmine green tea is produced the jasmine flowers are dried alongside the green tea which infuses the flavor in a different way. However, when I steeped the jasmine leaves on their own to make a herbal drink it was quite nice: floral and herbaceous. It reminds me of chrysanthemum flower tea, if anyone’s had that. Overall it’s pretty nice, even if it’s not exactly what I wanted.
Flavors: Floral, Herbaceous
Very rarely do I buy alcohol other than wine, but I had a craving to do so last week and I bought banana liqueur and vodka. I was doing the liqueur + a little vodka mixed with milk, which is good, but very sweet and heavy. Thus I decided to try my hand at a tea cocktail with luscious watermelon.
I steeped 4 perfect spoonfuls (10 tsp, same amount I use for lattes) of luscious watermelon in about 12 oz of boiled water. Steeped for 5 min, then cooled down with ice and added about half a shot of the liqueur and the same amount of vodka. The cocktail was light and refreshing and not too sweet or boozy. I made one for my husband that was heavier on the vodka and he really enjoyed it as well. I recommend trying this out! Be advised though, Luscious watermelon is a heavy blend and 2 drinks used up a LOT of leaf. Probably close to 50g. Luckily I had a leftover tin of this from last year that I’m trying to use up; otherwise I’m not sure If I would go out and buy tea specifically for alcoholic drinks.
Flavors: Fruity, Melon
2015 Autumn Laoshan Bilochun
Almost done my 25g bag of this, which therefore means I’ve had this tea quite a lot. I use 175F water and do the first steep at 25sec, adding 10sec each subsequent steep. I find the first steep to be the best with a buttery/vegetal taste and no astringency. The subsequent steeps tend to get a bit astringent, but still pretty good. Overall this is a bolder green than some of the other blends I’ve had from verdant. I do like it, but I don’t love it like I do Mrs. Li’s Dragonwell. Overall, really nice to try out Verdant; I’ve yet to have a bad experience :)
Flavors: Astringent, Butter, Vegetal
I’ve now had a chance to sample this tea a few times, multiple steepings each time. In my opinion, the first steep is the best one since it has the most vegetal & nutty taste. It loses most of those flavours with subsequent steeps, but it still lovely. Overall a nice tea, but not quite as good as Spring Reserve Laoshan Green or Mrs. Li’s Shi Feng Dragonwell (my ultimate fave, sooo buttery and nutty).
Flavors: Nutty, Vegetal
Hello, old friend, haven’t had you in years.
I visited the in laws this weekend (they are a 2.5-3h drive from us, and live right on a lake in a quaint little town of about 3k people). Perfect time for catching up, drinking tea, reading books, taking walks, and taking naps. Would have done more outdoorsy things but it SNOWED this weekend. Yes it is May 15th. Welcome to Northwestern Ontario ;).
My mother-in law and I were discussing tea and what our preferences are. She gave me a bit of Mango Tumeric which I like (she can’t handle tumeric) and she was looking through teas in her back room. She asked if I has this one (I replied, no, this one was discontinued 3-4 years ago) she said she hasn’t been drinking it often and gave me what came out to 1.5 tins worth. This tea was an absolute favourite of mine when I started drinking tea 4 years ago and was really disheartened when they discontinued it. So i was excited to have it, yet concerned about rancidity.
After brewing it up and drinking a full cup I was still pretty impressed with this tea. I do believe the honeybush and lemongrass were a bit stale as the taste was mostly stevia (although not cloyingly sweet) with whatever flavourings they put in it (ginger has always been mild with this tea, which I appreciate). What I do notice is that my tastes have changed because I don’t think the stevia was necessary (I’m just glad it wasn’t strong!) and I was waiting for the more woody taste of the honeybush and more lemony tastes from the lemongrass and myrtle. So with that being said I dropped my rating from 95 to 85.
Either way, this tea is still an old friend and I’ll have no troubles using it up. Now that I have a full ingredients list for this blend, I plan on making my own honeybush lemon ginger blend my own way.
Flavors: Ginger, Sweet
A re-review of this tea.
I bought this in a to-go cup over a month ago, and enjoyed the almond flavour but thought it was so rooibosy/woody tasting do to oversteeping. Today I bought 50g and was careful about steeping and sadly found that it’s just that the flavouring isn’t strong enough for my liking. I am getting some almond flavour, but most of the taste is just woody rooibos. A bit disappointing. In order to use it up, I am going to either blend this with Earl Grey Cream Rooibos from iHOT (AMAZING rooibos blend with a wonderful strong bergamot + vanilla flavour) or other teas, or maybe just add cinnamon an a touch of maple syrup? I will play around and see what happens!
Flavors: Almond, Rooibos, Wood
Got this as a sample with my most recent order. I’m glad they gave me this tea because I was interested in trying it but not enough to buy minimum 50g.
The taste is most certainly vanilla and pear with a rooibos base. A good blend overall. I would consider buying this or a similar blend in the future. However, maybe this is just me, but I feel like flavourings in rooibos teas don’t last long and you have to drink it up right away and be very careful about the way you store them or else they become bland/stale. Anyone else experience this? Unless I have a rooibos blend that is strongly flavoured I find the flavouring is lost within a few months or less.
Flavors: Pear, Vanilla
This note is for the Spring 2016 tea.
Another tea from Verdant. I was up early (for me anyways) and got to savour two steeps of this tea at home before work. Another lovely, gorgeous tea. Here are my findings:
Steep 1: 8oz 175F water, 30sec: vegetal, slightly floral, and more prominent a nutty taste that kind of tastes salty and buttery. SOOO goooooood.
Steep 2: 8oz 175F water, 45sec: less nutty, still vegetal, a bit buttery and slightly floral. Super good too.
I did do a third steep in my travel mug for work, but I only rinsed it after work last night so the taste is muddled with the tea from yesterday. So I will not comment on that steep other than saying is vegetal, lol.
One of the most delicious teas I’ve ever had. I’ve been trying to follow Verdant tea’s western steeping recommendations and I wonder how big of a difference it’s making as well? Usually I do a 12oz mug with about 1-1.5tsp of tea and steep green tea for 1.5-3min and its the same for subsequent steeps. I’m going to try Verdant’s methods on other greens I have and see how it makes a difference.
Flavors: Butter, Floral, Nuts, Nutty, Salt, Vegetal