1999 Tasting Notes
Sipdown no. 5 of 2022 (no. 655 total).
This made a quite popular cold brew in our household. No. 2 disappeared the first pitcher before I had much of a chance.
I think he liked it a bit more than I did. It was a bit heavy on the tart, heavy on the earth, and not as heavy as I would have liked on the actual orange and passion fruit. It’s possible I needed to significantly over scoop and didn’t. Which I’ll keep in mind because I have a lot of these 80 rated fruit teas which, given that my lowest rated teas in my cupboard are now 80, are going to get a lot more attention.
I also discovered that I had a big bag of the Blood Orange fruit tea from Harney. Which I hadn’t added to my cupboard. So getting to decupboard this is a wash, unfortunately.
Sipdown no. 4 of 2022 (no. 654 total).
It’s still pretty hot here, so I’m still mostly drinking cold tea.
I haven’t had many cold white teas, but this one was mild and refreshing. Not planty, which was my fear — just a little earthy.
I’m using the last little bit of it to give some heft to my next experiment — cold brewing a fruit tisane….
Sipdown no. 3 of 2022 (no. 653 total).
I’ve recently had a number of green cold teas at various coffee places — mostly local to places I’ve been traveling, so I thought I’d do one at home and also go for a sipdown.
Alas, my home version didn’t live up to expectations. What hadn’t been a particularly vegetal green tea when hot became one when cold. It was a little like drinking cooked vegetable run off, though more pleasant.
Anyone watch Emily in Paris? It didn’t taste like leek soup, but made me think of it.
The last little bit is getting combined with an Andao white tea for another cold brew experiment — but my tin is empty so I’m calling it a sipdown.
Sipdown no. 2 of 2022 (no. 652 total).
This made a surprisingly delicious cold brew — I worried that the cold would make the vegetable notes come out and I’d feel like I was drinking cold vegetable soup with notes of tea, but fortunately that didn’t happen.
Instead, the cold brought out the spicy, peppery note. Which, as I write it, sounds unpleasant, but somehow wasn’t.
I saw a The O Dor store when I was in Paris last March, but I didn’t go in. I was afraid I’d buy more tea and I’m still terribly overloaded with old tea that I need to clear out as I’m contemplating beginning a house remodel — and every little bit I can get out of the house between now and then will help.
Sipdown no. 1 of 2022 (no 651 total).
Hi! Did you miss me? I missed me. :-) I missed you too. It has been a crazy, crazy time. Not much tea drinking going on over here for a long time until pretty recently when it got super hot and I decided to make some of this iced. Then I made some more, and finally today I put the last bit into the fridge to cold brew.
It made a really nice cold brew. Probably nicer than it was hot, though that was so long ago I can’t say I really remember.
So, news since last time. Puppy is now a dog. No. 1 has graduated high school and is headed off to some form of higher education in the fall. No. 2 is a “rising junior” in high school. Work is still fun, and still very busy.
We have all managed to evade covid so far.
I have started doom scrolling again, which sucks. State of the world (or at least this country) and all.
How are you?
Sipdown no. 30 of 2021 (no. 650 total).
One of the lower rated teas in my collection (since pretty much every true tea in my collection is rated over 80 now with maybe one exception, I’m enjoying an embarrassment of riches).
My original note on this, when I drank it hot through multiple steeps, identified one of its characteristics as fishy. I sipped this down with two cold pitchers worth and neither were fishy. So there’s that.
Cold shu is actually kind of nice when you’re in the mood.
I still have way too much pu’erh.
Sipdown no. 29 of 2021 (no. 649 total).
This one strikes me as a true “84.” It’s a good, solid first flush darjeeling. Nice and grapey without the bloaty quality I sometimes get with first flush darjeelings. On the smooth side, not a lot of wood and stonefruit, but some.
And with that, I am down to only 15 cupboard pages in my Steepster cupboard. Huzzah!
Sipdown no. 28 of 2021 (no. 648 total).
Another “84” that I’ve decided to demote. I just think I overinflated my rating the first time.
As smoky teas go, it’s about the right degree of smoke for me. Like Puer, I think I tried too hard to really love smoky teas and while I can appreciate them once in a while, too much smoke and ash reminds me of why I gave up smoking more than 20 years ago.
A small amount of smoke is fine, but I think that maybe a nice keemun without the lapsang would be plenty for me to have that hint without being hit over the head by it.
I do have one lapsang I quite like, though I could never drink it every day. I’m not sure I would need this in addition, but I’m not saying I’d never buy it again. I’m really, truly, on the fence.
Sipdown no. 27 of 2021 (no. 647 total).
Big news: we got a puppy!
I haven’t been drinking as much tea as usual because two weekends ago, we did a whirlwind road trip down to Southern California to pick up Reggie, our baby Basenji. Down on Saturday (one cup of tea in the morning) and back on Sunday (no cups of tea). Baby is very fun, and very smart — he’s already learned “sit” and is learning “down” — and potty training is going pretty well. After he goes potty outside, he comes over like “bruh, where’s my treat?” which is exactly the point.
Last weekend I had an early haircut appointment on Saturday — following strict covid protocols — so also didn’t get any real tea drinking in because I wasn’t back until the afternoon.
I did drink a bit of tea on Sunday, which enabled me to get into sipdown range with this for today.
I have to say, I’m conflicted about this. I mostly stand by my original note, it’s just that my current thinking would put something described in my original note as lower than an 84. So I’m bumping it down.
As I mentioned, it suggests cookie, but it’s not very sweet, which makes it not quite as cookie-ish as I’d expect. Yes, some cookies are sweeter than others, but most of them are pretty sweet or they wouldn’t be cookies. AmIright?
What kind of cookie? Slightly almondy, slightly shortbready, I guess. Not bad for the right mood. I guess I’ve just become more of a hardass on my grading scale.
Sipdown no. 26 of 2021 (no. 646 total).
Of all the teas I have clustered around the 83/84 mark, this is the most deserving. I’m bumping it.
It’s a great example of a very drinkable every day Earl Grey. Smooth, not too much bergamot (but now I’m convinced, the right amount), aromatic and well-weighted base that gives it a medium body.
While I will always favor Earl Greys with a Yunnan base because of the depth Yunnan delivers, this is one I could see having in my cupboard long term for those days when I want an Earl Grey, but something a bit lighter. I think I either didn’t notice or had spaced that his blend also has white tea in it, which may be one of the reasons it has a smoother flavor than some others.