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Richard Kilgore

What Tea Are You Drinking Today? (Part 1)

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2007 White Bud Sheng Puerh from norbutea.com.

Just amazing that the same plant can produce the variety of lovely stuff I've been drinking this week--the Big Red Robe, the AliShan High Mountain oolong, Japanese sencha and gyokuro, this and the Lao Mansa puerhs, and a basic green jasmine.

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Yesterday in the morning it was the Ceylon tea I currently like best, a Vithanakanda Estate, Extra Special from Teasource.com.

I also attended a Tea Pairing Lunch yesterday at the York Street Restaurant in Dallas. Chef-owner Sharon Hage, a five time James Beard nominee, worked with Kyle Stewart from The Cultured Cup to select the teas. Here's a link to the report on the five course pairing in the York Street topic. So another five fine teas for my day. And an herbal, chamomile, in the evening.

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No tea yesterday but I made up for it today.

First thing this morning I brewed a pot of Mangalam Assam full-leaf. It has the malty flavor so pronounced in Assam teas and is rather sweet. I brewed it in the TeaMate - water was 195° F., first steeping was for 3 minutes. Subsequently I brewed a second pot -same temp, for 8 minutes.

I added milk and half a teaspoon of raw sugar to each cup.

all of this tea consumed by noon.

At three I delved through my "collection" of teas (56 as best I could count) and chose Tea of Good Tidings, yet another flavored tea from The Republic of Tea.

This one used to be a seasonal tea but is now available year-round.

It includes: Finest black tea leaves, juniper berries, natural flavors, orange peel, cranberries, cloves, rose petals, almonds, vanilla, black currants, blackberry leaves and cardamom seeds.

Brewed in the TeaMate for 3 minutes, the aroma and taste of this tea simply reflects the season. The fruits and spices can be sensed but do not overpower the flavor of the tea.

Enjoyed with milk and honey crystals.


"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Today, Pouchong from TenRen. When I finish this batch (I bought several ounces, so it will take a while), I will try their top grade Pouchong for comparison.

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Today I tried 2 of the pu erhs I recently ordered from Norbu tea.

One was strange, strong and smelled like fish (for real). I took the tea to my husband and asked him what he thought it smelled like and he too said "fish". I drank it and while it didn't taste like fish it was a strong, deeply earthy (like bowels of the earth) brew. This was the lao cha tou. I drank two infusions of it.

This afternoon was 2006 Feng Hua, Qi Cha. Love, love, love it.

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Any chance of some more details in the puerh topic?

Yep! I will in the next few days. Long day today getting ready for a HUGE garage/tag sale. Very tired. Just checked in for a quick post and to see what everyone else was drinking.

BTW, I sampled Ten Ren's Super Fine and First Grade Pouchong. I really liked the First Grade.

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Started the day enjoying a Mariage Freres Assam Napuk from The Cultured Cup. Then later brewed The last of a package of a 2003 Anxi Aged TGY Oolong from jingteashop.com. Brewed gongfu style in a Yixing made of 70s-80s clay for 11 infusions before I got tired of it. This is a honey-rich aged TGY with stone fruit over the roasted flavor. Absolutely delicious.

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This morning I have brewed a pot of Murroughs Welsh Brew (Welsh hwyl) loose tea (sent to me from England because it is practically impossible to find here - although the tea bags are available.)

The tin states "Welsh Brew is a blend of fine quality African and Indian teas selected to compliment Welsh waters. A tea yielding that traditional colour and flavour relished by true tea drinkers."

It is, in a word, a Hearty! tea. I brewed 8 cups in the TeaMate, using half the amount I would ordinarily use because this is a CTC tea and that amount was more than enough.

This is a very assertive tea. It doesn't exactly leap out of the cup and slap me awake, but it certainly gives one notice that it is real TEA!

I added honey crystals and milk, more milk than I usually use but this tea can stand up to it.


"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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Started the day with the sencha experiment (discussed in the japanese green tea topic), and then as I was cleaning up, the postman knocked with my box from norbutea. So....had to set up the teapot again and taste the 2009 Late Summer Ya Bao - Wild White Camellia Varietal Tea. As I'm brewing it, it is sweet, vegetal, grassy, piney, floral--but all of these quite subtle. Quite a contrast to the refined sencha!

I'm also looking forward to making a comparison between the spring, summer, and fall Alishan High Mountain Oolongs. Should be a nice chance to educate my palate about the differences between the seasons in the same tea.

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I'm also looking forward to making a comparison between the spring, summer, and fall Alishan High Mountain Oolongs. Should be a nice chance to educate my palate about the differences between the seasons in the same tea.

I have all three of them too and am looking forward to trying/comparing them and also to reading your tasting notes.

Today I again grooved on the 2006 Feng Hua, Qi Cha from Norbu.

Tonight I am drinking chrysanthemum tea.

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Started the day with a red(black) tea from jingteashop.com, an Anhui Gift Grade Gongfu Keemun. I'll brew this again tomorrow and say more about it.

Then enjoyed the Fall 2009 Alishan High Mountain Oolong that Greg gave me as a free sample recently when we were trading teas. Finally got around to brewing it and posted more in the Oolong topic.

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After yesterday's Ali Shan oolong-fest, today started with a comparison of Dragon Well and Yunnan Mao Feng green teas; then a first try of a new shu puerh; and now gyokuro again.

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Brewed the same Keemun from yesterday this morning. An elegaant Keeman. I think I'll brew it gong fu cha tomorrow and then post more in the Unflavored Black Tea topic.

Next tried an Alishan High Mountain Beauty - Summer 2009 from Norbutea.com. Brewed it a little too hot (195 F) for the leaf the first five infusions and then cut back to 185 F on the 6th and it was much, much improved. So I'll brew it again soon and report on that in the Oolong topic.

Now I'm drinking the delicious Sencha Yabe Supreme from yuuki-cha. Brewed it in an older Hagi houhin, but drank it split between two types of cups to check for cup effects, and I'll post about that in the Japanese Green Tea topic.

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Black Yunnan today--the Yunnan gold xtra fancy from Chadotea--with a sprinkling of Osmanthus blossoms. Really nicely amplifies the underlying fruitiness of this tea. Thought of the combination after a reshuffling of the tea cabinet yesterday, and running across the osamnthus which I'd forgotten about.


Edited by Wholemeal Crank (log)

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Another spicy tea from Adagio. This one is Spiced Apple Chai.

Very warming on these chilly days. Not as strong in the cup as some chai blends I have tried from this vendor but the tea stands up well to milk and sweetener and is an extremely pleasant drink with a long, smooth finish.


"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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I'm new to Roobios and I'm loving to concept, history and geography. It's a special taste that reminds me of many things, I think, that aren't in the brew.

I've got the buzzer set for an hour before dawn, at which time I'll make the Roo and watch the Leonids meteor shower.


Peter Gamble aka "Peter the eater"

I just made a cornish game hen with chestnut stuffing. . .

Would you believe a pigeon stuffed with spam? . . .

Would you believe a rat filled with cough drops?

Moe Sizlack

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Today's been a slow tea day. Started with a nice Ceylon from TeaSouce.com this morning and just got around to brewing the Sencha Select from TheCulturedCup.com featured in a recent Tea Tasting & Discussion. Two fine teas.

Tonight I'm resisting getting into my sample tea for the next Tea Tasting & Discussion featuring a Fall 2009 Ma Xi, also known as a Harry Crab Oolong. Okay, so drinking a Harry Crab doesn't quite work as an appealing image, but the tea is from Greg at Norbutea so there is very good reason to believe it likely will not hurt you too badly. :wink: And the reason for the name is in the link. Check it out.

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Right now I am drinking Norbu Tea's 2009 Fall Alsihan, one of the 3 packets of Alishan samples Greg kindly sent with my order.

I am eager to get back to tasting more of the pu ehrs I ordered from him.

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Today starting again with green tea, the yunnan mao feng from norbutea. I think I need to weigh this one, because what looked like a big pinch of leaves has not filled much of the pot, and the flavor of the infusions is coming up a little light. It needed to be a little stronger to stand up to the apple tart.

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Started the day with the Nilgiri, Glendale Estate, Handmade from TeaSource.com. Just about to finish up a bag of it, but I have another in reserve that I ordered after trying the first one. This is another tea featured in a Tea Tasting and Discussion earlier this year. One smooth tea.

I have also been brewing a Lao Tie Guan Yin, Late 1990s aged. I bought some of this many months ago from Greg at Norbutea.com and today tried it gongfu cha style in a Yixing and in a gaiwan. Stone fruit up front with the wood-fire roastiness. I liked it better brewed in the gaiwan and do not yet know if the Yixing clay is still new enough that it is absorbing tea oil and sucking out flavor (which is normal), or if other teas brewed in it are interfering, or if another Yixing pot with a different clay will do better. But for now, the gaiwan brews a richer, fruitier tea liquor. I'll play with this tea in a few Yixing pots and see what happens.

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Bought a block of that puerh but will probably not get to it for a bit yet. Today starting with some Big Red Robe, which is just right for a day when I need caffeine for wakefulness but also soothing for a mildly frantic day.

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