1018 Tasting Notes
I should make more notes to reflect how much I drink this tea. I practically always have a cup on hand now, and my pouch is sadly beginning to run low. I do what I can to make it last, and sometimes stretch the leaves out over the course of a few days- with no ill effects so far! This oolong can go on for +6 steeps without losing any “oomph”, so it seems a waste to cut it short when the day ends.
At this point I definitely know this is the Scented Milk Oolong I want to stock all the time. If I just had this and What-Cha’s Sticky Rice Oolong in my cupboard I’d be content (but I’d also need a few puerhs, a good Chinese black, Silver Needle, Kenyan White Rhino, Matcha, Cream of Earl Grey, a Japanese Sencha…)
Steep count: 5
Flavors: Coconut, Cream, Mango, Milk
While I was steeping (and sniffing) this baby, I thought I was going to have to go over how Roasted Oolongs don’t seem to work for me again. Needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised when that overdone roasted aroma turned into a creamy cup of nuts and barley, with fruity and floral accents.
At first, I feared that the cream and nut notes were residue flavours from the cup’s previous resident (Coconut Carrot Cashew- It’s Operation Sipdown and I’m running this ship like a dirty fastfood joint). It appears these flavours are this tea’s own, however!
I still vastly prefer green oolongs, but this makes me less hesitant to try the roasted fellows. Teavivre Dong Ding Oolongs appear to be a win for me too!
Steep Count: 2
Flavors: Apple, Cream, Floral, Hay, Honeydew, Melon, Roasted Barley, Roasted Nuts
I’m implementing Operation Sipdown because, omg, Black Friday sales. Everyone around me is currently being offered cups and cups of different teas; you’d think they’d be more ecstatic.
Since it’s already by the kettle and is almost gone, this is priority No. 1. It always seems the teas easiest to finish off are the ones I don’t actually want to finish off (hoarding!). The ever-present fear of coconut rotting propels me, but still!
Flavors: Carrot, Coconut, Malt, Nuts
I went through quite a bit of this today using both western and short steep methods. I have to say I think I may prefer the western, which resulted in a sweeter, less marine cup, but both were pleasant! I don’t know how this ended up as the last of my free samples from Teavivre; it’s probably my favourite of them all! Both of my parents (including my exclusively Red Rose-drinking father) enjoyed drinking this smooth and vibrant green tea, which is incredibly novel.
Thank you again, Teavivre, for the lovely samples. I can’t believe they’ve lasted this long.
Steep Count: 3
(2017 spring harvest)
Flavors: Beany, Butter, Peas, Seaweed, Sweet
This was the bride-to-be’s favourite at the wedding shower I supplied teas for. I’m glad because that meant we worked through a lot of it; there’s no point in hoarding coconut blends!
It was also my sister’s (a bridesmaid) second favourite, after the China Yunnan Simao Pure Bud Golden Snail Black from What-Cha, which was a crowd favourite as well after it was dubbed “a tea that has a fancy name but still tastes like tea.” Apparently people were intimidated at first by the Snail until they realized it tastes like a fancy version of their usual fare, after the addition of milk and sugar (snobbishly crying inside this whole event).
Someone also supplied a Milk Oolong from David’s Tea- the name of which also initially scared and confused people, until I explained they should treat it like a green tea (no milk or sugar). Everyone knew what honeybush was though (popular too), so silver linings!
Flavors: Carrot, Coconut, Nuts
This is one of the samples The Teaguy sent me ages ago. My mom, in particular, appreciates this one greatly. She loves jasmine greens the most out of everyone here. She rates this 100.
The suggested steeping parameters are perfect and made up a silky-smooth floral cup, with jasmine and lilac notes that are distinctive yet don’t overpower the palate. I thought it was overdone when I saw the dark yellow-green colour of the broth, but nope! All is good.
I have this weird thing where I find jasmine greens subtly “salty”, and this one is not an exception. It didn’t hinder my enjoyment of the cup though, hot or cold. Will hold off on rating it though until I’ve gone through more of the package.
Thanks again, Teaguy!
Edit: Smoke note is subtle, but I pick it up more when I allow my cup to cool. My mother, who vehemently hates smoke tea, doesn’t appear to notice it though, so we will keep this between you and me, Steepsterites!
Flavors: Floral, Jasmine, Smoke, Vegetal
I was showing some teas to my sister (Red Rose aficionado) for her upcoming bridal shower tea party, and she decided she liked this one very much. The snails have charm- which is too bad for me because it means I must do without them for a few days. These are the sacrifices sisters make for each other.
The upside is I found out that this is surprisingly tasty with milk (my sister must have milk in her tea or it isn’t tea, apparently).
(2017 spring harvest)
Flavors: Cocoa, Malt
Some people may say this is starting to fade but I’d like think that the potato and apple pieces are aging nicely. Those two ingredients and the spices are still full, if a little cider-like (pleasantly sour and bubbly), but the buttery Huangshan Mao Feng base is getting quite flat. The green leaves are pitiable to look at (browny-green and thin).
Although it hurts me to part ways with my remaining two Butiki blends, my goal is to drink the remaining 50g of this by the end of the season, while it still retains some of it’s magic and remains on the pleasant side of the spiced apple cider vodka spectrum.
Flavors: Apple, Butter, Cinnamon, Potato
Drinking this one again, after ripping myself away from my Thailand Sticky Rice binge. I finally came up with an arbitrary rating but it will likely change with time. Also, it smells like Turkish Delights, and second steep is always better than the first steep (duh).
The pink packet it comes in is nice too, and I like it.
That’s my Deep Thought tea note for today (I drank tea!).
Steep Count: 4
(2017 summer harvest)
Flavors: Cream, Rose
I’m in a pretty volatile place, as far as black teas go. Practically none of them are working for me right now, yet I crave them at this time of the year. I’ve become largely indifferent to the cocoa-malt profiles of a lot of the Chinese varieties and Assam’s astringent raisins.
This is one of the very few exceptions to my current apathy. I don’t know why, since it’s one of those aforementioned Chinese cocoa-malt teas, but there is just something about it that takes me in. It’s possibly the powdered sugar aroma it exudes while steeping, or perhaps it’s the lovely dichotomy of rich, deep notes with the smooth, light quality of the “broth.” I don’t know. until I find the motivation to rebuild my black tea palate I’m going to desperately cling to it though.
Running out of this, along with the Thailand Sticky Rice Oolong, had me reordering from What-Cha a lot sooner than I had planned; I wasn’t going to bother until I ran out of the Kenyan White Rhino too, but these two teas somehow snuck up on me and became an essential part of my routine.
Steep Count: 4
(2017 spring harvest)
Flavors: Cocoa, Malt, Powdered Sugar, Sweet Potatoes