Backlog and present note reflection.

I took a vacation to tour the historic Saint Augustine Florida and visit my father. I thought about taking my teas with me, but decided not to because I know my dad doesn’t have a filter and drinks tap water. I planned on going through my Hugo Bagged Earl Grey and Jasmine Bai Hao because I know those teas can usually withstand okay bottled water while retaining their flavor, and I wouldn’t lose out on the flavors of my more expensive leaf.

Then I had a hair up my butt, and decided to get some Coconut Pouchong and this one from the Spice and Tea exchange and see how they held up. This Golden Money is the tea that begins to convert regular drinkers to higher end fancier black teas-a stepping stone drug if you will. I know I’ve had this one years ago and didn’t think much of it, so I decided to go at it again by pure impulse.

Opening the bag and 10 dollars spent later, the tea’s earthy but distinctly spicy, smelling like pepper, ginger, anise seed, and distinctly, licorice root and chocolate. Spice and Tea I’m not sure if it’s because the tea sits in a spice store soaking up the other flavors, or if its the tea itself since some black teas can have an edge to them. Brewing it western at my dad’s house with bottle water, I only got some flavors. The Spice and Exchange undersold the description making the tea savory, which is accurate. Dense malt, honey hints, muddled chocolate, and earth licorice root. Solid, okay. Quaity water is needed, and less humidity that is not Florida weather.

Back in Michigan on a hot day with only ten percent less humidity, the dry tea smells incredible. Spicy more so with qualities of the golden monkey that I know I like. Gong fu, and I got the flavors I described about and thick layers. Chocolate, honey, yams are more prominent yet still equal with the licorice and malt. Some people say tobacco for it, and I can see it more now in the malt. I’m getting mega peanut butter vibes in steep one and two.

I like this one’s profile, but $10 is a lot for it. So far, I never go beyond 3 steeps with it before the tea loses flavor, and I’ve gotten better quality for the same price and cheaper.

Flavors: Anise, Butter, Dark Chocolate, Earth, Honey, Licorice, Malt, Peanut, Pepper, Spices, Sweet Potatoes, Tobacco

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First Off, Current Targets:

Whispering Pines Alice
Grand Crew Teas
Wuyi Origins Jin Jun Mei Sampler
What-Cha Jin Jun Mei
Good Luxurious Work Teas
A good Qilan
Best Sachet Teas

Dislikes: Heavy Tannin, Astringency, Bitterness, or Fake Flavor, Overly herby herbal or aged teas

Picky with: Higher Oxidation Oolongs, Red Oolongs (Some I love, others give me headaches or are almost too sweet), Mint Teas

Currently, my stash is overflowing. Among my favorites are What-Cha’s Lishan Black, Amber Gaba Oolong, Lishan Oolong, Qilan Oolong, White Rhino, Kenya Silver Needle, Tong Mu Lapsang Black (Unsmoked); Whispering Pines Alice, Taiwaneese Assam, Wang’s Shanlinxi, Cuifeng, Dayuling; Beautiful Taiwan Tea Co.“Old Style” Dong Ding, Mandala Milk Oolong


I am an MSU graduate, and current alternative ed. high school social studies and history teacher. I formerly minored in anthropology, and I love Egyptian and classical history. I love to read, write, draw, paint, sculpt, fence(with a sword), practice calisthenics on rings, lift weights, workout, relax, and drink a cuppa tea…or twenty.

I’ve been drinking green and black teas ever since I was little living in Hawaii. Eastern Asian influence was prominent with my friends and where I grew up, so I’ve been exposed to some tea culture at a young age. I’ve come a long way since I began on steepster and now drink most teas gong fu, especially oolong. Any tea that is naturally creamy, fruity, or sweet without a lot of added flavoring ranks as a must have for me. I also love black teas and dark oolongs with the elusive “cocoa” note. My favorites are lighter Earl Greys, some white teas like What-Cha’s Kenyan offerings, most Hong-Cha’s, darker Darjeelings, almost anything from Nepal, Green Shan Lin Xi’s, and Greener Dong Dings. I’m in the process of trying Alishan’s. I also tend to really enjoy Yunnan Black or Red teas and white teas. I’m pickier with other teas like chamomile, green teas, and Masalas among several.

I used to give ratings, but now I only rate teas that have a strong impression on me. If I really like it, I’ll write it down.

I’ll enjoy a tea almost no matter what, even if the purpose is more medicinal, for it is my truest vice and addiction.


Michigan, USA

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