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Recent Tasting Notes
Well, my Dad’s gone back to Regina after spending the day here celebrating my birthday. So, of course, presents were brought up with him/purchased. From my Mom, I got money and the DT Spring Collection (which I thankfully hadn’t bought yet) so I look forward to digging into those ones in a few days. The money went to grocery shopping; I fully took advantage of my Dad’s car to buy some bulkier things that I likely wouldn’t have otherwise, and also splurged a little and got some fancier/more expensive things.
One of the things I picked up was grenadine; I’m gonna try playing around with the amount needed to add it to straight black teas and sort of make my own Monk’s blend – which I think will be a fun, exploratory adventure. I fully expect some flops; but hopefully I can make something really tasty too!
We also went out for supper, and contacted the people with whom my, untouched, education fund is run through. There’s near five grand in there which has just been sitting since I decided that I wasn’t going to college/uni after graduating since I didn’t know what I wanted to do. Well, now I have something I’m really interested in – so we’re working on withdrawing the funds for me to complete the modules necessary to get certified as a Tea Sommelier! My New Years resolution was to get started on that; and we’re working on making it a reality! We also stopped at the post office, and I sent out VariaTEA’s birthday present. It probably wont make it to you in time for your birthday (though it’d be amazing if it did) but hopefully it’s close!
And, as his birthday present to me he purchased the Chawan from Rikyu that I’ve been lusting after, as well as this tea from Camellia Sinensis:
I was showing him the Gaiwan I ordered for myself which is on the way, and I ended up pulling that tea up to show up. I explained how it’s something I really, really want to try but probably wont ever buy for myself because it’s so expensive ($20 for 25g) – but how it was fun to think about trying it ‘someday’. He read the description and I think something finally clicked for him about how the flavour notes present in straight tea are similar to different distinctions in wine – and he loved CS’s information on the estate which the tea comes from (he made so many wine comparisons). So, he bought me that too.
Seriously; we put in a Camellia Sinensis order for just the yellow tea; $20 in tea and $10 in shipping! That’s crazy – I’d have never done it. Theoretically, we paid more than a dollar a gram! But I’m really excited about it arriving! My first straight yellow tea!
As for this tea, I’m quite sad it’s gone now! So far, it’s been my favourite out of the swap from TheLastDodo – though I still have stuff left to try.
Unfortunately I botched this last mug a little bit – I was steeping it when my Dad got in from Regina – and got heavily distracted, so this grossly over steeped. It actually didn’t taste terrible but it did have a bitter edge and a kind of rusty and metallic note was brought out. Still nice and smokey though; and while I didn’t like the bitterness I actually thought that metallic taste was an interesting, albeit unexpected, addition to the flavour that didn’t totally clash.
I let my Dad try it, and he insisted that I include in my review for this one his impression too. So, and I quote, this was what my Dad thought: “It’s like smoked fish from a can.”. And then he quickly thrust the mug back in my direction and scowled. Not a fan of Lapsang, I’d say. I don’t get fish AT ALL but I can see the “can” part. Maybe he was tasting the Pu’Erh mixed in with the blend? It doesn’t taste fishy to me, but if he was picking up on it I suppose I could see where he’d draw that conclusion from.
Not quite there yet; only three more days though! This was just the only day he could get into town to visit :)
Straight this time, no milk.
Honestly, I think that maaaayyybeee I liked this better with milk? I don’t even know why; it’s amazing either way. I think this has a really perfect balance between sweet smoke, earthy tones and a pinch of more mineral like notes. I drank the first half hot, and the second half cold. There was something really interesting and thirst quenching about having it cold.
SMOKEY TEAS HAVE GROWN ON ME SO MUCH. I almost feel like I don’t even know my own palate anymore…
Thank you TheLastDodo for the sample! I’m surprised how quickly your package made it to me; usually things from the States take longer to arrive. Crossing my package makes it to you as efficiently!
I have to say, the mix of teas you sent me is both exciting and intimidating. Tons of new to me things; especially all the green teas. Probably like 8/10 of the samples are things I’d have never even come close to picking for myself; but that’s not a bad thing AT ALL because I know I’m gonna learn so much from trying different things! I’m actually dying to try the Tai Ping Houkui but I’m struggling to figure out what to brew it in; the leaves are HUGE…
Suggestions would be appreciated!
I’m drinking this one Western Style with a splash of milk since the tea description mentioned it going well with milk. I wouldn’t have thought so, ‘cause of the Lapsang but it actually does work really nicely. I have to admit; my palate has seriously changed over time because I am loving Lapsang right now. It actually bothers me I don’t have any straight Lapsang stocked right now, because I’ve certainly been craving it. Tre calls in “Gentleman’s Tea” which I think is super charming and adorable, and I’m gonna start doing it too. But yeah, I was really happy to see this in my swap package!
I can tell I’m in a ramble-y, wordy mood so I’m gonna try and keep this short and sweet. But we all no I’m terrible at “run on” tasting notes…
But, it’s obviously smokey from the Lapsang – more of a campfire smoke though than an ashy, tobacco smoke. There’s a lovely, but light, malty note coming from I assume the Assam as well – and an unrefined earthyness from the Pu’Erh, which is probably only exaggerating the “Campfire Smoke” taste. I’m curious is this would taste a little brisker without the milk; thankfully I have enough leaf to revisit and try it again plain! Honestly not sure what the oolongs contributing here; I don’t think I’d know it was in the blend if I hadn’t read it in the description.
Really good though! Thanks so much Dodo! It was nice to come home from work today and brew this one up, since I went without my morning cuppa…
A tall and skinny glass! Maybe a canning jar? Size depends on how much leaf you have, of course. I have a “test tube” glass from Ikea I’m saving for when I get to try long teas. :)
Yeah; I was thinking using the mason jar I typically use for cold brewing. I feel like a tea newb ‘cause I don’t even know if the leaves are gonna need that much expansion room, but if they do I think it MAY be the only thing I have large enough.
Yeah, 25 oz. I need to double check sample size; but I’m like 75% sure I have enough leaf to give it a try once. Dodo was really generous with the sample sizes she sent.
Yeah, they are. I have no clue what you mean by dance – but that sounds fascinating! Maybe I should be doing some research here…