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Leaf Type: Oolong
Where to Buy: Dachi TeaTea Description:
Fresh and delicately balanced with a lotus flower and magnolia bouquet aroma, the semi-oxidized Sky High Oolong is the original High Mountain Oolong. The Sky High Oolong is notable for retaining its nutrients and the flavors of the unspoilt environment in which it is grown. Soft elements of crisp mountain air, natural earth and spring water pair well with its smooth mouthfeel and sweet aftertaste.
Learn more about this tea here.Taster’s Review:
This is my fourth and final tea to try from Dachi Tea’s inaugural collection – Sky High Oolong. As I often do, I saved the one that I thought I’d enjoy most for last. The name of this tea suggested to me that this would be an AliShan and indeed, it is! And you know how much I love me some AliShan Oolong!
Oh! My! Goodness!
I’ve tried many Alishan High Mountain Oolong teas in my years as a tea reviewer, and I’ve loved all that I’ve tried. At least, I can’t think of any that I disliked. But this Sky High Oolong from Dachi Tea might just be the very best Alishan High Mountain (not to be confused with Jin Xuan Oolong) that I’ve yet to try. If not the best – then it is in the top three and one that YOU SHOULD TRY for yourself!
To brew this tea, I measured 1 bamboo scoop of leaf into the bowl of my gaiwan. Then I heated the water to 180°F. For the rinse, I poured in just enough of the heated water to cover the leaves (the gaiwan was about 1/3 full) and I let the leaves steep for 15 seconds and then strained the liquid off the leaves and discarded it. Then I filled the gaiwan with heated water and let the rinsed leaves steep for 45 seconds. For each subsequent infusion, I added 15 seconds onto the steep time.
I strained each infusion into my YiXing mug that is designated for AliShan Oolong. The mug is large enough to hold at least 4 infusions and sometimes I can fit 5 infusions. This time, I stopped at 4 infusions.
My first cup (infusions 1 – 4) is absolutely EXQUISITE! It’s creamy and buttery. Not quite as milky as I’d experience from an AliShan Jin Xuan, this has more of a silky, buttery taste and texture than a heavy cream flavor/texture.
There is a lovely floral tone to this cup. The Dachi website suggests a balance between the flower of a lotus and magnolia blossoms, and I’m inclined to agree with that assessment, although every once in a while I also pick up on a note that is distinctly honeysuckle-ish. The sweet floral notes are really beautiful.
Something that I’ve picked up with this particular AliShan that I don’t often notice with AliShan Oolongs is a light ‘crispness’ that evokes thoughts of the air you might ‘taste’ when hiking in the mountains. That clean, exhilarating freshness that you’d experience from the air that surrounds you on such an excursion.
Further, the texture of this, while it is indeed creamy/buttery/silky – it isn’t a heavy texture that you might experience in another Alishan Oolong – it doesn’t feel heavy and ‘coating’ to the palate. It feels rather clean and light. In the aftertaste, I pick up on light mineral-y notes.
My second cup was a little lighter in texture than the first cup. This cup isn’t quite as creamy but I found that with the lighter texture, some of those floral notes really emerged strongly. This is a delightfully floral cup – light and refreshing – with an incredibly smooth character. I get next to no astringency and no bitterness, just a very smooth flavor that is floral and sweet. The aftertaste is sweet with only hints of the mineral notes I noticed with the first cup.
If I were to have to choose which cup I preferred, I’d say the first, only because I really enjoyed that silky creaminess, but I like this second cup too. I love the floral notes. About mid-cup, I start to notice a subtle fruit note that evokes thoughts of peach and just a hint of sweet citrus.
Overall, a truly amazing tea experience from Dachi. If you’re a fan of AliShan tea – this should be on your “MUST TRY” list!
Country of Origin: India Leaf Appearance: small, covered in silvery hair Ingredients: white tea Steep time: 5 minutes Water Temperature: 195 degrees Preparation Method: Teavana Perfect Tea Maker Liquor: gold Some of you might remember that I reviewed a Muscatel Darjeeling, also from Okati, from +Golden Tips Tea Co Pvt Ltd late last year. I've always enjoyed Darjeeling white teas so I was Nicole Martinhttps://email@example.com
Without mastery of the mind we shall never walk upright, no matter how wonderful our intentions. The mind is a strong and powerful elephant, able to serve or destroy the city equally. For that reason, our centers and schools will always be places of meditation, just as a life of tea in this tradition will include morning and evening meditation sessions, framing each day in peace and centeredness. Also, periodic retreats of longer duration should be held in the life of a tea wayfarer. Just as we need to plunge the dipper into the heal- ing waters of silence every day, we also need a deeper draught now and again to balance periods of activity with stillness, doing with being. Our minds are turbid waters, and only quiet stillness can bring the clarity we seek in a life of tea. Connection between the kettle, pot and cups is completed in their emptiness, which they all share. The emptiness in the vessel is what makes it useful, connecting it to the other vessels. Like that, all great tea comes out of the meditative mind.
You can read Bowl One here. The remaining bowls in this series will be published as follows:
Bowl Three: Humility and Gratitude; Study, Contemplation and Prayer April 15
“Eight Bowls of Life” was written by Wu De and first published by Global Tea Hut February 2013. Loading image from TChing archives. Post images courtesy of Global Tea Hut. Loading image from T Ching archives.
Leaf Type: Pu’erh & Black Tea
Where to Buy: DAVIDsTEATea Description:
Something magical happens when you combine rich, earthy pu’erh with sweet, juicy orange. Somehow the result is so much more than the sum of its parts – deliciously fresh and fruity, yet undeniably good for you. Whether you sip it hot or over ice, it’s super-soothing and addictively refreshing. With a tea this happy in your arsenal, who knows what else might go your way? Things are looking cup…
Learn more about this tea here.Taster’s Review:
This is a relatively new offering from DAVIDsTEA and it appears to be a part of their regular line up of teas, and not a limited edition seasonal blend or from one of their constant limited edition collections. It’s nice to see the company expanding their Pu’Erh offerings, though I was skeptical about this one even before seeing other people review it; it seems relatively similar to their Garcinia Goodness blend.
Reviews on this one seem to be fairly polar, and I was actually relatively sure I’d land on the side of people who dislike this blend. This smells very juicy, and tangerine-like dry though. Enough so that I didn’t let my prejudice get the better of me and I picked up a small sample in store to try.
Steeped up this actually isn’t anything like I thought it’d taste. Which I suppose is good because, like I’ve already expressed, I was doubtful this would be that good. There’s a sparkling effervescence to this blend. Right off the bat it comes through clear as crystal in the smell and is capture very well in the taste as well. I can see it making a phenomenal tea soda!
I’m really, really tasting the tangerine in the blend which is so lovely and different from a lot of citrus heavy blends. The regular orange flavour is quite strong too and has a wonderful, fresh taste but it’s not nearly as interesting as the tangerine. Overall the flavour reminds me loosely of orange tic tacs? Sweet, candy orange with a little bit of tang to it. Surprisingly I don’t really taste anything that particularly reminds me of hibiscus? That’s certainly a relief. Maybe there’s not a lot of it in the blend, or it just blends into the tangerine really well.
As for the base; it’s hard for me to believe this is pu’erh or black tea (the blend uses both). It’s just really light overall and the flavourings are really the focus here. I suppose I do taste the pu’erh just a little though; there’s a rawness to the fruit that tastes a little earthy in the finish. The mouthfeel of this one is nice too; kind of thick with that sparkling quality.
I’m pleasantly surprised by the blend. I didn’t buy a lot but I’ll be able to have a few more cups and if they’re like this one at all I could, in fact, see this as a blend I’d buy more of! It seems like it’d work as an iced tea as well, so it could be a wonderful spring or summer companion.
Leaf Type: Black
Where to Buy: ZoomdweebiesTea Description:
Here’s our delicious organic Iyerpadi black tea blended with the organic flavors of vanilla ice cream and maraschino cherries. Life really is just a bowl of cherries, you know. Enjoy it with some of this delicious iced tea.
Learn more about this tea here.
Learn about SBT’s subscriptions here.Taster’s Review:
Nice! I wasn’t too sure about this Sweet Cherry Ice Cream Iced Black Tea from Southern Boy Teas because the words “Sweet Cherry” often mean “cough syrup” in the world of tea and I worried a little bit that this might end up tasting like that. But I’m happy to say that the cherry notes are not an overwhelming flavor and there’s no hint of cough syrup!
Instead, I’m tasting what was promised in the title: I’m tasting a cherry ice cream flavor that brings me back to the days when we used to go to the local drug store and get a ice cream cone.
Wow, I just aged myself there, didn’t I? Are there any small drug stores like that anymore?
The black tea is the dominate flavor of this tea and it’s smooth. Brisk and lively, this isn’t an aggressive black tea, nor is it astringent or bitter. It’s just really smooth and delicious.
When I first pour myself a glass of this tea, I find that the flavors seem to ‘hide’ themselves until I’ve consumed about half a glass. Then the cherry flavors really seem to pop. Now I’m tasting a cherry note that’s sweet but there’s also just a hint of tart to it. Enough tart to keep it from tasting too sweet and to give it a more fruity taste and not so much a medicinal one. The vanilla undertones add to the smoothness of the black tea and give the glass of tea a really pleasant, creamy taste.
This tea would be perfect for the hot summer months that lie ahead. It’s going to be a flavor that both kids and adults will enjoy!
The post Sweet Cherry Ice Cream Iced Black Tea from Southern Boy Teas appeared first on SororiTea Sisters.
Leaf Type: Fruit & Herbal Tisane
Where to Buy: Tea & All It’s SplendorTea Description:
Blueberries, meet apple, ginger and lemongrass. These fruits and herbs along with a small bouquet of other herbals are blended together to make a caffeine free blend, that will have you wishing blueberry season was here.
The blackberry leaf mixed with dried blueberries and apples provide a bold, naturally sweet blueberry flavour that reminds us of pie. The verbena, lemon grass and ginger give us the “zing”, making this the best herbal blend we’ve tried this year.
Learn more about subscribing to Postal Teas here.Taster’s Review:
I didn’t look at the ingredient list before I brewed this Blueberry Zinger Fruit Tisane from Tea & All It’s Splendor, but based on the name of it I figured that it had hibiscus in it. So when I measured 1 1/2 bamboo scoops of the tisane into the basket of my Kati Tumbler, I was a little surprised to not see hibiscus in the blend. It was a pleasant surprise, to be sure and I could hear a little voice in my head say, “just because you don’t see the hibiscus doesn’t mean it’s not there.”
I poured 12 ounces of 195°F into the tumbler and let the tea steep for just six minutes, thinking that there had to be hibiscus in the blend. But when I lifted up the strainer basket and saw that the tisane was a golden amber color and not a ruby color – there wasn’t even a hint of pink hue to the liquid! It was then that I thought, “Huh! Maybe, just maybe someone knows how to make a tisane without hibiscus in it!”
Then I went to the Tea & All It’s Splendor website to check out the ingredient list:
Apple and ginger pieces, blackberry leaves, blueberries, heather blossoms, melissa and verbena leaves, lemongrass, natural flavouring, blue cornflower blossoms.
Did you see that? Or perhaps, do you NOT see that! Because I’m looking at an ingredient list for a fruit and herbal tisane that doesn’t have hibiscus in it.
Oh joyful day – I knew it could be done! Other tea blenders out there, take note – you CAN make a fruit and herbal tisane without hibiscus. It can be done!
This is really quite a tasty tisane. I think that the name might be a tad misleading, only because I’m tasting more apple, ginger and lemony notes than I am blueberry. But don’t let that deter you from trying this blend because it’s really good – and I DO taste the blueberry.
As I said in the previous paragraph, the apple, lemon and ginger are the three strongest notes that I taste. The apple tastes sweet and is a nice contrast to the zesty ginger flavor. The lemon-y note is not particularly tart, but I do get a hint of tartness here and there. These three flavors come through right at the start of the sip.
Just before mid-sip, I taste a flavor that I’ll describe as herbaceous. It isn’t a distinct herbal flavor. It just tastes lightly herb-y. Just after mid-sip, I notice the blueberry starting to come through and by the finish, I do taste a clear blueberry note. It’s a sweet blueberry note and I like that this tastes authentic. I’m not getting a fake berry flavor.
I’m very pleased with this tisane. I’m very happy that there isn’t any hibiscus in this – and perhaps most surprising about the lack of hibiscus is that in just about every berry fruit/herbal tisane like this, hibiscus is used because hibiscus has a tart flavor that is often mistaken for a berry taste. I’m so happy that Tea & All It’s Splendor didn’t take the ‘easy way out’ with this blend and add hibiscus to it. And I’m even happier that Postal Teas decided to include it in this month’s box!
The post Blueberry Zinger Fruit Tisane from Tea & All It’s Splendor appeared first on SororiTea Sisters.
Gosh, I am so behind on writing. There's posts scheduled for all five days that I publish but sometimes things like this really great oolong from +Global Tea Hut slip through the cracks. There wasn't time for a full photo session but in a way, I think that I might have enjoyed it more because of that. I had a quiet and meditative moment at my kitchen table. The ever faithful Zhu was my only Nicole Martinhttps://firstname.lastname@example.org
Finally I purchased a Joseph Wesley Black Tea. It's Tea No. 06, the Bai Lin Congfu. The company was serving this tea at the 2015 Coffee &Tea Festival. I liked it immediately. Another good thing -- I met Joe Uhl, and he's as gracious as his writing voice.
If you don't already know, Joseph Wesley Black Tea only sells black tea. View the complete tea collection. Each tea is single origin, grown on an estate, and is directly sourced. Read about this approach to tea procurement. The Bai Lin Congfu is a Chinese black tea made from the Da-Bai tea cultivar.
The leaves are beautiful, aren't they? Long twists of gold and black. On the nose, the dried leaves are dark chocolate and bread dough.
The smell of the liquor as it steeps is like warm butter and sugar in a pastry. When I pour the liquid into my drinking cup, the wet leaves in the tasting cup smell like a really good milk chocolate malt. Whenever I drink this tea I wonder what it would taste like as/in a chocolate bar. There's underlying dried fruit cake flavors. When my Aunt Elizabeth first tried this tea she described it as tasting of being on a cloud. The tea coats your whole mouth lingering in the cheeks especially on the second steep.
I prepare this tea in my tasting cup set using 1-2 teaspoons and an estimated water temperature of 185-190 degrees F. My first steep is usually 2-2.5 minutes as recommended. I haven't gone beyond three steepings.
I will definitely save this tea tin. I really like the design - the diamond graphic on the front and the black and white photo of the drummer, and steeping/tasting notes on the back. (Sara asked about the company's aesthetic in her interview with Joe.)
Have you tried any of the Joseph Wesley Black Teas? I'd like to hear about your experience.
P.S. Bai Lin Congfu pairs really well with creamy, funky cheeses. I recently drank the tea with Ardrahan and Quadrello di Bufala cheeses.
We all go on a quest in life looking for something to make it all worth it. We date in search for the one; we apply to jobs in search for one; we look for purpose in search of one. On this journey, we so often find others that we loosely call our favorite, or a temporary favorite, yet we are (hopefully) selective before we dedicate ourselves to one.
In tea, let us find a similar one. There are thousands of tea shops and vendors with tens of thousands of teas, how could we possibly choose just one to be our one tea? The Chinese say, “A great husband makes a great wife.” Let us go even further and say that a great tea makes a great individual; and, with practice, a great individual will make great tea. Dedicating ourselves to any one thing is a practice in will and in commitment; however, when we find that one tea that gives us what we need, it makes all the difference in our lives.
Let Pu’er Tea be that one tea, for example. If one dedicates themselves purely to Pu’er tea, within that tea there are sub-categories that allow some variations in taste, feelings, and benefits. There is Ripe Pu’er (Shou Cha), Raw Pu’er (Sheng Cha), and Aged Raw Pu’er (Lao Sheng Cha); and, even further, there is Spring and Autumn Raw Pu’er as well that have very different tastes and effects. If one wants to really connect with their tea(s), one should learn them and sit with them extensively. In order to truly understand anything, we must become obsessed with it.
Think of it as feeding a newborn. When introducing new foods to an infant, one new food is introduced every couple of weeks so that the parent may watch the child and see how the food does or does not affect the child. Does it make them hyper? Does it calm them? Does it make their stomach hurt? Ah, let us be the same with our teas. Let, “Food be thy Medicine” as Hypocrites so famously said, and let us know our teas like we know the medicines in our medicine cabinet. Let us reach for this tea if we want to feel this way and reach for that tea if we want to feel that way. As we sit quietly with a tea, we will learn how that tea affects us and when we would want to “use” this tea. All this in search for narrowing down our Top 20 teas to our Top One.
Now, of course, this can merely be an exercise, but let us really learn our teas in order to completely know them. Some tea shops have the habit of carrying hundreds of teas but never really knowing them; whereas, others have dedicated themselves to specializing in one region of teas (i.e. Chinese teas, or Indian teas). Through focusing on minimizing the quantity of things in our life, we are giving and providing better quality to the things we have in our lives. Rather than being consumers of so much, let us learn to embrace the beauty in so little. Through this, we are sure to find peace in the simplicity. Through this, we are sure to find the Way of Tea.
Nicholas Lozito continues his search for the ONE at Misty Peak Teas.
Leaf Type: You Choose
Where to Buy: Design a TeaTea Description:
It’s time to order the best tea you’ve ever tasted. Why? Because you choose the flavors! The concept is simple, choose a base and one or two flavors to blend your own unique tasting tea. Top it off with a personalized name and brag to your friends about your gourmet style or give it away as a gift. Not sure what flavors to mix? Try our samples!
Learn more about this tea here.Taster’s Review:
Have you ever craved a tea before so badly that you searched and searched for hours determined that this tea had to exist and that you would find it? That has been my mission as of late. To find a flavored green tea that was flavored with. . . banana. Yep. I have been craving a green banana flavored tea. Or really any banana flavored tea that wasn’t black or red roobios based. But that’s harder to find than you think. The majority of banana flavored teas also have chocolate in them and I’m not a huge fan of chocolate teas. I just don’t think I’ve found the right ones yet.
A couple years ago, I discovered Design A Tea. They have a great promotion where you can customize a few different blends pretty inexpensively and try out some of your creations before committing to a larger size, which is a fantastic option. So after the hours of searching it dawns on me, I should create myself a green banana tea and that is how my Morning Sunrise blend was born. The blending process is very simple. You choose your tea base. You can pick black, green, oolong, or rooibos. (There is a separate page that you can customize and design your own earl grey teas, whites, Darjeelings, and a slew of other teas.) Pick up to 2 flavors and pick one herb. There are a ton of different options for flavors. Pretty much the sky is the limit on what you can create. Adding the herb is a nice touch for the tea. Finish picking out your packaging options, name your tea, and viola . . .Your creation is born!
With this particular order, I went banana crazy and made three different banana teas. And I have to say, they are amazing! The bases that they use at Design A Tea are fantastic! I created a banana-orange green tea with chamomile and it tastes just like that! The orange flavor is stronger than the banana (which seems to be a common occurrence with this company. One flavor profile outweighs the other) but I am a happy camper. It reminds me of a yogurt that I loved when I was a kid. Sweet and citrusy all at the same time. The green tea mixes in nicely and gives the tea almost a weightless property. It feels like a tea you would drink in the springtime or on a summer day, maybe iced. After the third infusion, the flavors were still going strong and I was very impressed.
I haven’t had a chance to try them all yet, but I am enjoying the Banana Caramel Oolong with Cinnamon (it tastes very similar to Banana Fosters. . . .yum) as I am typing this review up. This tea is a desert within itself. Another home run. I am incredibly impressed with this company and my brain is already concocting different ideas for future teas. . . . .
The post Product Review: Create Your Own Tea from Design a Tea appeared first on SororiTea Sisters.
Aside from the fact that tea is addictive through caffeine, why do we drink tea?
Since I drink tea daily, it is not something that I spend a lot of time thinking about. For most of us, it’s already become such a routine that it’s just a simple part of day, but there is always a dimension of “why”, especially when it comes to trying to look for the finer teas, or to find teas that are particularly interesting.
I think on a very fundamental level, a tea should be pleasant. This means that when drinking tea, it should deliver pleasurable things to you. What those are may differ on an individual level, but generally, they should probably consist of fragrance, good taste, and good feeling. Teas that don’t fulfill these requirements can be, and often are, seen as failures.
Take green teas, for example, which is something I rarely talk about. Green tea for me was where it all started – I began drinking longjing, just like my grandfather did. I recently drank some green teas from my hometown, not too far from Suzhou where biluochun is produced, and I’m reminded of why people drink green tea and why it is in many ways the most desired tea. Green teas are very nice things to drink. They are fragrant. They are smooth, at least when you brew it correctly and the quality is not too bad. They are sweet. They aid your digestion and are refreshing. There is really no drink more perfect than a good cup of green tea.
Or consider an oolong I bought recently. It’s expensive, to be sure, but it is also fragrant, smooth, has long lasting aftertaste, complex, interesting, and has qi (most teas don’t, but that’s another topic for another day). It’s great, and it feels great to drink it. Everyone there enjoyed the tea.
Then you look at things like newly made puerh – and it all falls apart. Compared to green teas, new make puerh are very rough. They are rarely sweet, instead leaning much more to the bitter side. They can be fragrant, but not always. In fact, the ones that taste good right from the get go tend to be ones that will age poorly, especially if they exhibit, say, green-tea like beany fragrance. Contrast that with an aged puerh, where the rough edges have been worn down and the tea becomes sweet, smooth, and feels great to drink. It’s a big difference.
I used to subject myself to a never ending series of questionable teas, all in the name of learning. Even when a tea seems nasty, or worse, tasteless, I’ll persist to see what’s going on and see how it fares. With time and experience, however, it is now far easier to arrive at a conclusion about a tea’s inherent quality. It is rarely the case that teas will show you anything new or exciting that is different after your 3rd or 4th infusion. It is possible, but very rare, and the tea is usually some kind of oddball. Most teas, in most cases, you can figure out what’s going on very quickly. Being now much more willing to discard poor quality teas, it is nice to drink teas that are actually enjoyable. I reserve samples or other teas of unknown quality for when I drink with a group. In those cases, it is easier to compare different teas, to examine them, and to arrive at a conclusion about them quickly and much more accurately. The really nasty ones? You drink a few sips and you throw it away.
When I’m at home and drinking by myself, I increasingly find myself reaching for the tried and true – puerh that I have aged myself that are now very drinkable after 10+ years, things I have bought that I know are good, and other kinds of teas that are not going to give me a nasty surprise. After a while, there isn’t a whole lot left to learn in bad teas – they are bad, and that’s that. For puerh, it is somewhat useful to know why they are bad – whether it’s bad storage, or bad processing, or just bad leaves. For other teas, it’s not really material – if it’s bad, you shouldn’t drink it. Life is short, drink something nice. For that purpose, a well made green tea is almost unbeatable.
by tea alberti 1. How did you start your story with tea? - I’m not quite sure if I understand your question properly. Do you mean how I first started drinking tea? I actually talked about it in the Wall … Continue reading →
Placeres una nueva propuesta de TARAGÜI para disfrutar del momento del té sabores más acentuados aromas delicados + nuevo diseño. Se incorporan a la renovada línea de té combinaciones innovadoras de aromas y sabores deliciosos Para disfrutar del té en … Continue reading →
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Hostmaster Pattern / teacup by New Martinsville Glass Company
Vintage Youngsware China Fantasy Pattern
Noritake China April Cook N Serve Teacup ¿dónde consigo la taza? My Eclectic Heart
Details from Willow / colección Teapot diseño by Richard Brendon