I’m going to throw out there right off the bat, this isn’t a negative or positive review. For me, this was a pretty forgetful cup of tea. Neither good nor bad. I am going to mention, however, that I am aging the rest of my batch in the hopes of improving the experience.

The leaf is very pretty with it’s unusual shape and silver-white tips. It has a very gentle, subtle aroma reminiscent of sweet hay or grass. I brewed this tea several ways. Last night, before bed, I made a 16 oz pot using the temperature and steeping guides provided on the Whispering Pines website (2 tbsp at 200 for 3 minutes). The tea steeped to a pale gold with a mellow (almost non-existent) grassy flavor. The second steeping I left in for much longer (15-20 minutes) but it didn’t strengthen the flavor at all.

This morning I made another cup using the alternative method most people seemed to have used. I dropped a whole tbsp straight into my cup and drank it unstrained. I left this one to steep much longer than recommended and while this did make for a slightly more bold flavor and adding hay to those grassy notes, it still wasn’t enough to satisfy. Adding another tbsp to the second steeping and leaving it for even longer still didn’t produce more flavor.

While I do enjoy a subtle tea this was far too mellow for me to really get behind. I will eventually use what is left of my stock but if aging doesn’t help I likely won’t be purchasing this leaf again. If you like those subtle flavors however then this is the tea for you.

Flavors: Grass, Hay

200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 6 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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I have always been a fan of tea but never had the drive to drink anything more than the bagged tea I could buy at the store. Cheap bag of Earl Gray, splash of milk, pinch of sugar, and I was happy as could be. It was the way for years. My addiction to whole leaf began just days before I was to jump on a C-130 with my unit and deploy to Afghanistan. We were posted at Joint Base Lewis Mcchord for MOB training and we were given a 4 day pass into Seattle to enjoy the last few days we had left in country. Long story short, I visited a Teavana out of boredom while waiting for a friend and that was it. I left for the sandbox with 2 lbs of tea and an electric teapot in my rucksack. No regrets.

Since then I have addicted my mother, and to some extend my dad, to the pleasures of a pot of steeped whole leaf. Now we can’t go back. We’ve tried. Whole leaf can be an expensive habit.

Allergies: Cinnamon (I miss chai tea)

Likes: Ginger, Elderflower, Citrus,Lemon/Lemon verbena, Umami, Toasted, Smoke, Earthy, Floral, Grassy/Hay/Herbal, Tangy (think hibiscus), Peach, It would seriously be quicker to say which flavors I DON’T like

Dislikes: Apples, grapes, grapefruit, most berries


Las Vegas, NV

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