Literárna Čajovňa

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Recent Tasting Notes

70

One of two teas from this new cultivar that I have tried recently. While neither was particularly great or unique, both seem to have a character of their own at least.

This one gives off aromas of raisins and gai lan straight away and cream with broccoli flowers after the rinse. The liquor has a light to medium body and a soft mouthfeel. Unfortunately, the taste is a bit weak. It is a mix of mineral, sweet and vegetal notes with a hint of banana. There is also a pleasant chest warming sensation throughout that I noticed.

Flavors: banana, Broccoli, Cream, Flowers, Mineral, Raisins, Sweet, Vegetal

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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76

Eating fried potatoes and an apricot pie in a florist shop? That’s kind of what these leaves smell like :D

The tea then has a strong mountain vibe – mineral and cooling – with flavours of nuts, plant roots, cinnamon and plantains. The aftertaste is really long and brings another note of sugarbeet. Generally, it is a sweet aftertaste as compared to the tea itself.

Flavors: Apricot, banana, Cake, Cinnamon, Floral, Mineral, Nuts, Potato, Roasty, Roots, Stonefruit, Sugar, Sweet

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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81

I got this cake blind because I haven’t heard of this area before, I tend to like Lincang tea, and the price seemed right. Overall, I am definitely not disappointed. The tea is indeed somewhat mineral as the description mentions. It is also very sweet for a fresh sheng, has no astringency. The flavour profile is somewhere between citrusy and floral with a substantial bitterness. It actually feels a bit like a sweeter version of a blend of Mengku and Naka to me, which is fine with me because I am a fan of both of those terroirs. I think it’s one of those young shengs that is totally ready to be drunk now. However, you have to be ready for a fairly strong cha qi, which is quite heady and stoning. I also detected warming sensations throughout the body, most notably in my face.

I like the mouthfeel as well, which I would describe as soft with average thickness. It never gets astringent, but it is somewhat numbing. Specific notes include a nettle aroma in dry leaves as well as flavours of sage, thyme and vanilla in the first couple of infusions. Later steeps have a milky sweetness, floral bitterness, and an oily aftertaste with thyme note to it.

Flavors: Bitter, Citrusy, Floral, Milky, Mineral, Sage, Sweet, Thyme, Vanilla

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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81

A standard, but very well done autumn Darjeeling. It has a sweet milky and woody character with notes of bergamot orange zest, hazelnut, raisins, and musk.

Flavors: Bergamot, Hazelnut, Milky, Musk, Orange Zest, Raisins, Sweet, Wood

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85

This tea is much less overwhelmingly floral than most TGY and other green Anxi oolongs, which makes me like it more I think. Apart from strong vegetal character, mild creamy and spicy notes, there is also interesting earthiness to it.

The dry leaf aroma is creamy with a hint of butter cookies, while scents of cabbage and flowers emerge from the gaiwan and cha hai respectively. The tea is fairly light bodied and induces a warming, numbing sensation. Taste-wise, I can detect eggs, chicory, and multiple herbs. There are also lingering floral and buttery flavours.

Flavors: Bitter, Butter, Cabbage, Chicory, Cookie, Creamy, Earthy, Floral, Flowers, Herbaceous, Spicy, Vegetal

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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89

I really like this green tea, it reminds me of ones from Laoshan but it certainly has its own character too. In particular, it has a unique mixture of floral and umami notes. I also enjoy its buttery mouthfeel and a refreshing, warming and fragrant aftertaste that stays for a long time.

From the dry leaves, I get hints of candles and passion fruit, while in the preheated gaiwan it’s more standard green tea aroma somewhere between a Laoshan green tea and a sencha (such as those from Koshun varietal). There are several floral notes, such as narcissus for instance. Wet leaf aroma then reminds me of thistles and green beans.

The taste follows similar lines. First infusion is a mix of nutty, bitter and sour flavours with a dry grass and meadow like impression. Later, we get more flowers, edamame and a mild green peppery bite. The aftertaste has a good bitterness that slowly transforms into a mix of umami and sweetness.

Flavors: Beans, Beeswax, Bitter, Dry Grass, Floral, Flowers, Green Beans, Green Bell Peppers, Narcissus, Nutty, Passion Fruit, Pepper, Pleasantly Sour, Sweet, Umami

Preparation
165 °F / 73 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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90

This is the first bihakkōcha I’ve ever had. Its profile is, however, a mixture of quite similar ones. Its aroma lands somewhere between an Anxi and a Taiwan high mountain oolong. It is more creamy and grassy rather than perfumy, with notes of flowers, honey and stewed green vegetables – lovely!

First infusion reminds me of some of the very green Dan Cong Oolongs with its grassy, mineral, and floral taste and a strong underlying bitterness. Second steep has a flowery, sour character with a cooling finish. It does also bring some umami and a marine character reminding one that it is indeed a Japanese tea.

The aftertaste is very long and it blends sweet and sour notes. The mouthfeel is thick and water-like. All in all, I greatly enjoy this tea and I am glad I still have some left with the spring being in full force already here in Innsbruck.

Flavors: Bitter, Cream, Floral, Flowers, Grass, Green, Honey, Marine, Mineral, Sour, Stewed Vegetables, Sweet, Umami

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Skysamurai

O_o never heard of this! Look good though!!!

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93

I love this Kamairicha, its depth of flavours and energizing qi.

Opening the package greets one with sweet grassy scent with a touch of mussels and butter cookies. Wet leaves then smell of kale, meat and yeast.

The tea has a smooth, colloidal, and creamy mouthfeel that I find to be rather engaging. Taste is crisp, vegetal and mineral with a good umami to it. In the aftertaste, sweetness meets juicy bitterness meets floral sour bite with flavours of sugar peas, clover and fern among others.

Flavors: Biting, Butter, Cookie, Floral, Grassy, Kale, Marine, Meat, Mineral, Peas, Plants, Smooth, Spinach, Sweet, Umami, Vegetal, Yeast

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Martin Bednář

I think this is a place I will visit next time I am in Bratislava.

Togo

You should, they have a lovely tea house!

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85

This is a lovely Yunnan oolong that reminds me of lighter Dong Dings. However, it is more mineral, foresty and sort of green. It can steep for quite a lot of infusions too.

The aroma is very fresh and inviting with notes of blueberry pie, cream, maple syrup. One can still tell the mild roasting present.

The liquor has a medium body, very mineral texture, and a pleasant, green taste with mild toasty notes. There are hints of butter toast, green peas, and nacissus. The aftertaste is sweet and cooling – it reminds me of rainforest and rosemary a bit.

Flavors: Blueberry, Butter, Cake, Cream, Green, Maple Syrup, Mineral, Narcissus, Peas, Rainforest, Roasty, Rosemary, Sweet, Toast

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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90

I rarely buy Long Jing these days, but I received a free sample of this one.

It has a dry leaf smell of grass flowers, baked goods and peanuts. Overall, it’s a relatively sweet aroma.

For the first, long, steep I used lower temp around 70 degrees. The tea turned out with full body and elegant and refined taste. It has the grassy sweetness, but the nutty notes are weak. I love its creamy mouthfeel and a bright, sour and savoury taste on top of the strong florals. I can taste butter and squash too.

Second infusion at 80 degrees was also pretty long at two minutes or so, but the tea hold up extremely well. There is no abrasive astringency and now we also get a lovely bitterness. The tea has a grainy taste like oats. It is still very bright and easy to drink though, despite the thick liquor. The aftertaste is not too sweet, mouth-watering and refreshing.

The cha qi is fairly unique, deconstructing reality and pulling my attention in to the experience. For the price it sells, this would be a great green tea to in the spring.

Flavors: Bitter, Butter, Creamy, Dry Grass, Floral, Flowers, Grass, Sour, Squash, Sweet

Preparation
165 °F / 73 °C 2 min, 0 sec 4 g 7 OZ / 200 ML

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81

This is a weird tea, no kidding. It is quite pungent, warming and aromatic. At times it reminds me of Sichuan green teas, but also of FF Nepal teas, Taiwanese jade oolongs from wild varietals and others.

Its dry aroma is a mix of oats, coffee and carrot cake. On the other hand, wet leaves have a savoury scent with notes such as cabbage, cooked meat, fenugreek leaves, olives, pickled cucumbers and a touch of smoke.

The tea has a medium body and a distinctively oily texture. First steep is vegetal (bay leaf) and sweet (honey). Second one is more bitter and mineral with a lot of woody aromatics. Aftertaste is sour, floral, and spicy. It is reminiscent of mead, plant stems, green peppers and IPA.

Third infusion is sour itself and has a bit more astringency too. It is very pungent and besides vegetal/floral notes it also has a hint of tree bark. As the tea becomes smooth over time, a creamy flavour emerges as well.

Flavors: Alcohol, Astringent, Bark, Bitter, Cake, Coffee, Cream, Cucumber, Floral, Forest Floor, Green Bell Peppers, Honey, Meat, Mineral, Olives, Plant Stems, Sour, Sweet, Vegetables, Vegetal, Wood

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 30 sec 7 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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86

A very nice aged sheng for 0.4$/g, it is on par with many that are being sold at double the price (from YQH or Taiwan Sourcing for example). The tea is very warming, both in its profile and its effect. The super sticky, thick and oily texture is perhaps the highlight for me here.

Its aroma is mily and earthy, while the taste is bittersweet and spicy with woody undertones. There are notes of garlic scapes, coriander seeds, cinnamon, and sumac among others. The aftertaste is juicy and tart which is very refreshing and makes the tea easier to drink on the whole.

Flavors: Bitter, Cinnamon, Coriander Seed, Flowers, Milk, Plant Stems, Sweet, Tart, Thick, Wet Earth, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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