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Richard Kilgore

What Tea Are You Drinking Today? (Part 1)

600 posts in this topic

Sipped the Ceylon Vithanakanda Estate, Extra Special (Teasource.com) while making the dressing for the turkey in the early hours this morning. And for the last hour or so drinking an aged 1999 shu pu-erh from Yunnan Sourcing as a turkey digestif.

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I am enjoying some Tie Guan Yin in the overeating aftermath. It's like a post-dessert dessert tea.

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Dragonwell this morning, and the Lao Mansa puerh this afternoon and evening.

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More herb tea this morning, prompted by how nice it was a couple of days ago. Hibiscus, chamomile, tulsi, orange zest, rosehips, licorice root.

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My eye opener was an Oolong. Now I have EveryDay Detox going by Traditional Medicinals. I'm adding a little fresh lemon to it.

It is not overly delicious, but it just seems like the thing to drink this afternoon and I am enjoying it.

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It has some specialized herbs for (supposedly) the liver and is in an herbal base with licorice and ginger. I threw out the box so I don't have specifics as the paper wrappings for the bags do not contain the complete ingredient list. The fresh lemon helps brighten it up and adds to a placebo effect for me.

The same company made a peach version and it is very good, but I am having a hard time finding it now here.

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Keemun Hao Ya A from Teasource.com this morning. I love its complexity and will have to get more on my next order.

Tonight I have been enjoying a 2009 Lao Ban Zhang Premium Raw Pu-erh I got from Scott at Yunnan Sourcing in July. This is just a first impression, but this sample from a beeng seems to be milder than the Lao Ban Zhang mao cha from norbutea, which is probably the best young pu I have had. I'll have to brew it again and post more in the Puerh topic later.

BTW, there will be just one more Tea Tasting & Discussion this year, with samples offered by yuuki-cha.com. If you subscribe to the Coffee & Tea forum, you will be the first to know.

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The past two weeks were incredibly busy and while I tried lots of new teas thanks to my Norbu order and the many samples Wholemeal Crank shared with me, I didn't make any tasting notes other than mental ones.

The frenetic pace caught up with me and I have been nursing a sore throat since Thanksgiving day which was spent in Michigan with my husband's family. My husband and I host Thanksgiving dinner the Saturday after T-day for my family and our friends. Fortunately, the bug stayed at bay enough for us to get through and enjoy both Thanksgiving celebrations.

Since I started fighting this bug last week I have been drinking concoctions of mostly pu ehrs (raw and fermented) steeped with fresh ginger and finished with lemon and honey.

Right now I am drinking Lao Cha Tou, Old Tea Nuggets from Norbu with lemon and honey.

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this morning, brewed a not very successful batch of the purple bud sheng puerh from norbutea that I've done much better before. I think used too high a leaf to water ratio and ended up with more smoky than fruity flavor.

This evening, some more Pouchong, pleasing as always.

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Ceylon Vithanakanda Estate Extra Special from Tea Source this morning. (I need to order more. They are out of it but expect more in early December.)

Later continued to brew the Lao Ban Zhang from Yunnan Sourcing that I started yesterday. Continued to be pleasant through many infusions. I did not count, but at least 10 so far.

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No tea this morning. The electricity was out and I opted for a decafe, a cranberry scone and a newspaper at Central Market, rather than building a campfire in the kitchen to heat water.

Have just started on a shu pu-erh from YunnanSourcing.com: a 2008 Menghai "Hong Yun" Ripe Pu-erh Mini tea cake (100 grams). Scott at YSLLC says on his site to go for very short infusions at first, and gong fu cha it's difficult to pour this too fast on the first few. Tasty, rich, thick mouth feel. I thought I detected a little hint of cocoa in the first infusion, but it was gone on the second.

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Gosh I was just about to feel sorry for you and your power outage Richard, then I read that you had to spend the morning at Central Market. :)

Actually I forwent the tea this morning for a Silk Soy Nog Latte.

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Big Red Robe to get me through a hectic clinic, then a little gyokuro to relax with afterward--after I was done sharing the Big Red Robe, it wasn't enough for the post-clinic paperwork too.

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Tea source's Keemun Hao Ya B this morning, then at noon my second attempt at making Matcha (an inexpensive one from Yuuki-cha.com), which seemed to work a little better than last time, though I was not aware of doing anything different other than using a different teabowl (chawan).

Please note - I'll post the next (and last for 2009) Tea Tasting & Discussion offering of free tea samples by tomorrow.

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No tea this morning. The electricity was out and I opted for a decafe, a cranberry scone and a newspaper at Central Market, rather than building a campfire in the kitchen to heat water.

Have just started on a shu pu-erh from YunnanSourcing.com: a 2008 Menghai "Hong Yun" Ripe Pu-erh Mini tea cake (100 grams). Scott at YSLLC says on his site to go for very short infusions at first, and gong fu cha it's difficult to pour this too fast on the first few. Tasty, rich, thick mouth feel. I thought I detected a little hint of cocoa in the first infusion, but it was gone on the second.

Continued brewing the 2008 Menghai "Hong Yun" Ripe Pu-erh Mini tea cake left over night. It's still tasty and after a total of 3 rinses and 8 infusions (longest 1 min 15 sec) it is not done.

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This morning I started the day with some dragon well, and noticing that the tap water smelled unusually strongly of chlorine today, decided to do a taste test with filtered water from the brita pitcher in the fridge vs tap. Surprisingly, the tap was much better--at least some of the chlorine must be driven off in boiling--and the brita filter pitcher is putting out water that tastes moldy. Teas were made in twin gaiwans, same weight of tea to water, and same temperature to within 2 degrees, and infused the same time before tasting. Finished off three steepings of the tap watered leaves.

Then some of the Lao Cha Tou pu-erh brick to keep me going through a long meeting, and finishing paperwork with a perfectly brewed thermos of the 3rd grade pouchong from TenRen. It's always a nice tea, but this carelessly prepared brewing--didn't pay attention to leaf quantity or water temperature--is the best I've made in a while. Just wish I knew what I did that made it so much nicer than the "just ok" batch from two nights ago.

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That's interesting WmC. I use a Britta filter, too, but keep it on the counter. Could it be picking up some odor from the fridge?

Regarding your "carelessly prepared brewing", my experience has been that my skill in brewing a specific leaf often improves over time in difficult - and sometimes impossible - to identify ways. I am doing something different, but I just can't tell you what it is.

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Ended the day with a tisane: Sunset Orange Roibos, which has a blood orange flavor, from The Cultured Cup. This is a nice one I may never have selected on my own, but had it paired with a first course that had a citrus sauce at York Street Cafe.

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I only have a brita filter for working iwth sourdough starters, and it also gets used for occasional guests who prefer their water ice cold. So it sits in the refrigerator for many months between cartridge changes. There is also a fine haze at the bottom of the pitcher that could be specks of carbon from the cartridge, but the taste of the water was more consistent with mold. Icky.

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WC, my girlfriend has a Brita that gives off a moldy taste. I think they need to be cleaned faily frequently to avoid mildew building up. The unfortunate thing is that I cleaned her pitcher with hot soapy water and it still gives off that taste. I'm thinking that once that moldiness gets into the plastic you might just want to buy a new set up?

I am drinking Scarlet Robe from Ten Ren. The first few sips were too perfumey for me, especially after drinking pu ehr the past few days, but I have settled into it.

My husband and I are going away for a week so I have to figure out what teas to take with me.

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this morning, brewed a not very successful batch of the purple bud sheng puerh from norbutea that I've done much better before. I think used too high a leaf to water ratio and ended up with more smoky than fruity flavor.

This evening, some more Pouchong, pleasing as always.

This is one of the samples that you sent me. I enjoyed it. I thought it had a nice balance between the smokey and sweet after the first few sips but definitely, the smoke hit me at first.

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Found my first notes on the purple bud puerh here, and will go back to that plan for my next brewing of it.

For traveling, I like to take two different teas that are quite forgiving in the brewing--like the one of the new style green oolongs and a mellow puerh or roasted/old style oolong.

[Moderator note: This topic continues here, What Tea Are You Drinking Today (Part 2)]


Edited by Mjx Moderator note added. (log)

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