kukicha

Kukicha Green Tea by Aiya America

Steeping specs: 3 g 1 cup 175° 1.5 minutes This one was a tea that I could not find on the company’s website, so please forgive me if I don’t steep it according to the ideal specifications. I kind of guessed a bit and I hope I didn’t steep it too hot. It turned out pretty well with the steeping specs I tried, but who knows what would happen with different steeping specs? (I didn’t have a large enough sample to really experiment.) As it steeps I’m catching buttery, seaweedy fragrances. After steeping, the liquid isn’t nearly as clear as I would’ve expected. Read More

Sencha-Green-Tea_0

Sencha Green Tea by The Tea Can Company. . . . .

I steeped this tea in one cup of 175° water. It comes in a sweet little tea sachet that I somehow managed to rip a hole in. (Good job, me.) So I’m steeping this for about three minutes and the color of the water is not changing all that much, although it is taking on a greenish yellow tint. The tea liquid is ever so slightly viscous, with teeny tiny specks dancing in it that I can barely even see. It’s not fragrant from across the room, but I can catch a whiff if I’m bending over the tea itself. I steeped for Read More

greenstyledongding

Green Style Dong Ding (oolong) by Fong Mong Tea

Steeping specs: 3 grams per half cup at 175° for five minutes While steeping this tea, I didn’t observe much color change. The leaves unfurled quite a bit, having started out as small pills or pearls, but the tea liquid didn’t seem to change color all that much. However, after I removed the tea leaves, I could see that there was a gentle peach color to the liquid. It’s very light and transparent, not dark or strong-looking at all. What is remarkable, though, is the lovely roasted smell (disproportionately strong given how light the color is) and the high-quality leaves; after the Read More

mountain oolong

Nonpareil Taiwan Li Shan Oolong Tea by Teavivre

Recently I’ve been going through an all-black-teas-all-the-time phase, so trying this oolong was a refreshing change. In addition to the great flavor, I also loved how intact the leaves were, and how they were rolled into neatly compact pearls. I steeped this tea at 212 degrees for 2 minutes (using the entire sample packet). The packet suggested 1-2 minutes; I sampled it after 1 minute and decided I wanted it stronger, so I left it in for another minute. The rolled leaves start to expand as soon as they’re submerged. They’re pretty tightly rolled, but they expand a LOT. I’m not really Read More

himalayn-shangri-la-special

Himalayan Shangri-la from Teabox

If I had to choose between dark oolong or green oolong, for me it would be green every time. I find them characterful and unique, with more variation in flavour than I’ve typically found (at least so far…) among their roasted counterparts. And that’s coming from a habitual black tea drinker. Himalayan Shangri-la is a Nepalese Oolong from 2015. It’s a first flush, or spring, oolong comprising highly graded leaves taken from a single estate. The leaf here is pretty impressive – they’re long and twisty, with a high predominance of downy buds, and vary from a dark khaki to Read More