145 Tasting Notes


This was my first roasted oolong. The dry leaves smell like hay and are wrapped very tightly. The first 2 – 3 steeps are very fragrant with notes of barley, raw almonds, and raw honey. The following steeps reveal more of the roasted notes and complex flavors, which gradually decreases with each steep, yet still leaving a sweet aftertaste. i use a yixing teapot, but I imagine it tasting different with a gaiwan. This was so reasonably priced that I’m considering to buy another pack.

Flavors: Chestnut, Cinnamon, Honey, Hops, Roasted Barley, Tannin

195 °F / 90 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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I like this tea for its price, JAS organic certification, strong flavors and aroma, and ease of brewing. I thought it would be fun to do a Google Maps search for the farm listed on the sealed packet, which is actually a small temple (Tokoji) in the mountains just north of Shimada. I used the street view function to get a feel of the quaint and charming origins of this tea. It made me appreciate it more.

When I opened the bag I was impressed by the strong scent of the dry leaves. The tea soup is lime green and the steeped leaves are fragrant. The first steep is sharp yet flowery, the third steep has notes of complex minerals and is well balanced, the forth and fifth steeps have a refreshing astringency and still leave a sweet aftertaste.

Flavors: Asparagus, Grass, Mineral, Ocean Breeze, Pine, Tannin

160 °F / 71 °C 0 min, 30 sec 0 OZ / 0 ML

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This tea is incredibly smoky in dry leaf form. So much so that I was almost disappointed before I even tasted it. BUT….when brewed I’m reminded of the sweet fragrance of summer nights. The tea is wonderfully complex, smooth, refreshing and more gentle on the pallet than other shengs. I has a Cha qi flows throughout the body and remedies my 3 pm drowsiness. The low price provides an added shock value. Will I buy more? Yes.

195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 45 sec

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This arrived as a sample with my 2012 MGH 1214 Eco Big Tree Green Pu’erh Brick. It’s not fungal like other shou puer. It’s very smooth, clean, refreshing, a subtle sweetness that’s comes with later steeps, and that fragrance of dried fruits (Chinese dates?) that I denotes its quality. Very comforting.

1 min, 45 sec

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When I first opened the package I was impressed that the tiny leaves were beautifully intact. I steeped it for the first time this afternoon. While I’m not a fan of the initial smokiness of the tea (taste and aroma), it does have its own cha qi and a refreshing finish that I found comforting on the stomach after having a lot of lamb for dinner. I see ageing potential in this tea.

195 °F / 90 °C 1 min, 45 sec

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My ever expanding list of obsessions, passions, and hobbies:

Tea, cooking, hiking, plants, East Asian ceramics, fine art, Chinese and Central Asian history, environmental sustainability, traveling, foreign languages, meditation, health, animals, spirituality and philosophy.

I drink:
young sheng pu’er
green tea
roasted oolongs
aged sheng pu’er
shu pu’er
herbal teas (not sweetened)


Personal brewing methods:

Use good mineral water – Filter DC’s poor-quality water, then boil it using maifan stones to reintroduce minerals。 Leaf to water ratios (depends on the tea)
- pu’er: 5-7 g for 100 ml
(I usually a gaiwan for very young sheng.)
- green tea: 2-4 g for 100 ml
- oolong: 5-7 g for 100 ml
- white tea: 2-4 g for 100 ml
- heicha: 5-6 g for 100 ml
(I occasionally boil fu cha a over stovetop for a very rich and comforting brew.)


Washington, DC

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