318 Tasting Notes


My Healthy Leaf samples came today! There’s several that I’m pretty excited about, but I was in the mood for a roasted oolong and it’s getting late so I needed low caffeine so roasted and aged sounded like a good combination.

The dry leaves are dark, twisty, and reasonably intact. They smell like… nothing? This might be the least aromatic (dry) tea I’ve tried. Much more important though is how it brews.

I gave it a wash and waited a couple minutes for the leaves to open up and then started brewing. Brews a clear red-brown with a fruity aroma. Taste of ripe fruit with cinnamon, roasted nut, and tobacco notes and a mild cocoa bitterness. The flavor lingers in the mouth long after you sip it. Slight wisp of smoke. The following steeps are a little less fruity but are cleaner and display more minerality. It start to get notes of citrus zest and red wine.

Very tasty tea, but peters out a bit quickly. I’m considering buying some, but it’s a bit pricey for me to drink on a regular basis.

Flavors: Cinnamon, Citrus Zest, Cocoa, Fruity, Mineral, Orange Zest, Red Wine, Roast nuts, Smoke, Tobacco

200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 2 OZ / 70 ML

Login or sign up to leave a comment.


Received a sample ball of this probably over a year ago but forgot about it. Rediscovered it today and decided to give it a try. I placed the full 6.5g ball into my 90mL jianshui and brewed it up.

I gave it two rinses steeps to let the leaves open up. Once open, the leaves brew a medium yellow and tastes slightly bitter but moderately sweet. Light apricot taste alongside green wood and generic “sheng-y-ness.”

This is a decent tea; above average for balls/mini tuos but not particularly special

Flavors: Apricot, Bitter, Green Wood

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 90 ML

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

I received a free 10g sample of this with my King Tea Mall order. Opening the bag it smells very fruity… like too fruity. I pressed on though and loaded 5g into my pot. Brews a very light yellow and tastes artificially fruity and floral. Beyond that it has the generic gasoline-y taste of low quality sheng. No bitterness, no thickness or lingering qualities. I did not finish my cup or brew any more.

I’m pretty confident that this is just low quality sheng maocha that has been doped with artificial scents. Very disappointing given King Tea Mall’s great customer service and excellent prices on factory pu. This won’t stop me from buying Dayi or other factory products from them in the future, but I will definitely steer clear of their house brand “Bokuryo” products.

Flavors: Artificial, Fruity

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 tsp 3 OZ / 90 ML

Interesting, I quite liked their Naka maocha. I think I have a sample of the Yiwu somewhere too, will have to check to see if my experience is the same.


Ok, I’d be interested to see what you think


I’ll definitely report back after I try it.

Login or sign up to leave a comment.


Started the new year on a good note!

I ordered this cake based on the great reviews and Mr. Mopar’s recommendation and
I was not disappointed.

I got mine from KingTeaMall.com as they had the best price I could find on this cake and free shipping. I’ve got to say I’m very impressed with their service; low prices, free fast shipping, photographed my order before shipping, gave a free sample, and packed very well and the cardboard box was wrapped in a tough plastic cover to waterproof it.

Back to the tea. The cake has moderate-tight compression and the leaves are very attractive with lots of golden tips. It smelled a little fishy/fermentation-y with worried me, but this did not carry over into the brewed tea.

Brews a clear red-brown, I gave it two rinses as I normally do with shou. The first infusion that I drank (the 3rd) was not impressive. It tasted kind of funky and just sort of generic “Dayi shou.” However, with each infusion it improved. Tastes of rich dark earth and rain, but also warm oatmeal and almonds. Has just a hint of dark chocolate bitterness that adds to the complexity. A nice cleanliness appeared, kind of cool and refreshing like cucumbers or cantaloupe. It is mildly sweet, but I have trouble pinning the flavor down. In the background there is a tiny hint of fruit. The best thing about this tea though is how it simultaneously has a thick creamy-ness and a clean minerality.

This is a very nice shou: it exemplifies the Dayi character but also exceeds it.

Flavors: Almond, Cantaloupe, Cucumber, Dark Chocolate, Dark Wood, Oats, Wet Earth

Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 10 g 5 OZ / 140 ML

I love this one. There was a lot of effort by Dayi to make this one right. I have a few of these around here.

Shine Magical

I’m glad I’m not the only one that tasted oatmeal in this, lol

Login or sign up to leave a comment.


I didn’t realize until looking up the tea to post this tasting note that Teavivre had a “Golden Monkey” AND and “Premium Golden Monkey.” My sample is the later. The leaves are very furry and delicate, though not quite as tiny and golden as Teavivre’s Tanyang Gongfu. Like the Tanyang there is a slight smokey aroma.

The taste is very mellow and smooth. Tastes of malt (in a lighter way), sweet potato, brown sugar, a faint fruityness, and just a hint of smoke in the background. Very velvety mouthfeel.
Gets tart, but not really bitter when overbrewed. Very different from the Golden Monkeys I’ve had from Teavana and other vendors. This tea is sort of like the missing link between Teavivre’s Tanyang and Bailin Gongfu.

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Fruity, Malt, Sweet Potatoes

200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

I agree, this one is a step down from other Golden Monkey teas. Not quite as robust as the Yunnan Sourcing version.

Login or sign up to leave a comment.


Ordered some of this based on tanluwils’ recommendation, was not disappointed! This is a somewhat tippier Bai Mudan. Tastes of dry grass, citrus, dried mint leaf, sugarcane, and musk. While I’ve already had a tea session this morning, so I can’t say that it’s all from this tea, I’m getting nice relaxing qi feelings. This is an excellent white tea!

Compared to Yunnan Sourcing’s Bai Mudan, this one is a little bit milder, and tastes more of citrus while YS’s tastes more of peach. Both are excellent, but I think I slightly prefer YS’s.

Today I am repotting my tea plants! It’s long overdue as they are almost two years old and have been in twelve inch pots for over a year. I think they will be much happier with more room to grow :)

Flavors: Citrus, Dry Grass, Floral, Lemon, Mint, Musty, Sugarcane

190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 15 sec 8 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

drank Bi Luo Chun by Dazzle Deer
318 tasting notes

Small, furry, twisted green and silver leaves. Dry aroma is nutty and vegetal. Brews a very light yellow-green. The taste is very mild without being weak. Strong chestnut note, edamame, sugarcane, and a pineapple fruityness. Great lingering flavor and aroma in the mouth. A nice tea!

Flavors: Chestnut, Green Beans, Pineapple, Sugarcane

180 °F / 82 °C 0 min, 15 sec 4 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

Login or sign up to leave a comment.


The leaves have a roasty aroma, but are pretty green in color. Brews a yellow-gold color. The taste is honeydew, floral, and toasted grain with a creamy texture. Nice oolong, I would call it more of a light roast than a medium roast.

Flavors: Cream, Floral, Honeydew, Roasted

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

Login or sign up to leave a comment.


Brews a light gold color. Tastes of pine, dried flowers, minerals, and incense. Slight brown sugar sweetness. There is a little bit of aged taste starting to develop, more than I would expect from a tea that’s blended 2015 and 2016 material. Compared to the 2017 not-so-ancient-tree Hekai, the taste is much more bitter and astringent, though I would still only call it moderately bitter. The mouthfeel is a bit thin, but it has a strong lingering aroma in the mouth. As I drink it I get a bit of the qi feels.

This one is definitely better than Teavivre’s cheaper Hekai. Good, but not outstanding.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Brown Sugar, Flowers, Mineral, Pine

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 90 ML

Have you tried any of TeaVivre’s current shou?


I haven’t, I tried a couple a few years back, but I don’t think their selling the same ones anymore.


Have you tried Chawangshop’s 2016 Hekai Gushu?


I’ve actually never ordered from Chawangshop, I’ve been thinking about it for a while but always end up sticking with YS. Any favorites?

Login or sign up to leave a comment.


Strong mineral note, a little bit of honeyed sweetness, and a little bit of generic “sheng-y” taste. No “green” or chlorophyl taste. It’s a little bit thick in the mouth, a little bit astringent, and there’s a little bit of lingering aroma in the mouth. Not much bitterness or potency of flavor.

It’s definitely easy drinking for a young sheng, but overall it’s just ok. I was expecting more potency and bitterness from a young Hekai tea. I’m interested to see what the “ancient tree” version will be like.

Flavors: Honey, Mineral

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 90 OZ / 2661 ML

Login or sign up to leave a comment.



Tea addict since around 2011.

My favorites are pu’erhs, blacks/reds, and roasted oolongs, but I have a growing interest in good whites, and sometimes enjoy greens.

Currently trying to get an education, working a part time job, expand my ceramics/pottery skills, and trying to make the best of existential crisis.

Other than tea I love the outdoors, ceramics, guitar, and diy/building things.

I started a tea blog in February 2018, though admittedly I haven’t updated it much lately.

When I give a tea a numerical rating it’s simply meant to reflect a balance of how well I enjoyed the tea and how it compares to others of the same style. I don’t follow any universal rating criteria, and my ratings are mainly meant for my own use, to remember what I though of a tea and if I want to repurchase.


Clearwater, FL



Following These People

Moderator Tools

Mark as Spammer