Another wonderful sample graciously provided by Teavivre for review.
I have taken a rather long time to review this tea. Not because I dislike oolong or because I was just to busy or lazy to do it but rather because it is essential I be in a special mood for oolong and an even more special mood for milk oolong. You see i have a special place in my heart for milk oolong. Do you have teas like that too? For me tea is the cure to moodiness . Each satisfying one and then the others.
So finally the day has come. The setting is perfect, and my mood in the right place. I have been so patient and I am so glad I can finally reap the benefits of my resolve. I steeped the milk oolong three times each infusion a different experience, as it should be.
First, I used my Gaiwan for this special event. I went to painstaking lengths to ensure the tea-ware was clean and warmed. I used natural spring water freshly heated to 195°F (I understand it is recommended I use 212°F but I wanted multiple infusions at lower steep times and in most cases 195° F is the standard protocol.) I gave the beautifully balled oolong a quick rinse. Next, the infusions were as follows…
Temperature: Steep Time: Flavor Results:
195° F 30 seconds Light, fresh, slight milky aftertaste
195° F 1 minute Balanced, creamier, fresh milk, not enough sweetness
208° F 2 minutes Greater oolong flavor, milkiness has faded, still fresh
My favorite infusion was the second. While I did enjoy this milk oolong my favorite is still from thepuriTea. I find theirs a little sweeter and creamier. The milk plays a much stronger role than the oolong. Where here the oolong is the major contributor. So it is really based on what you want more. If you are looking for a natural milk oolong that is more prevalently milky with an oolong flavor background, go for thepuriTea. If you are looking for an incredibly fresh green oolong with a touch of fresh cream-like flavor in the background, go for Teavivre. In this case one is not better than the other as they both offer different attributes.
I enjoyed this one a lot but I was hoping it to be just a bit more in milky flavor. I am certain the qualities of this tea will vary by harvest but as for now I am grateful for the opportunity to try this and will happily complete my sample. I can’t say for sure if I will keep it in my permeant cupboard, but then again I suppose it depends on my mood. Lets just say I haven’t ruled it out.
Score: 4 out of 5
Ok so this really has nothing to do with tea but mostly to do with the people that drink tea.
* Warning - I am probably writing this when I shouldn’t since I am a bit emotional at the moment. Sometimes I find relief in writing and so I thought why not drag you tea friends into it for some of your thoughts.
What a day for mixed emotions. My husband and I are celebrating our 15th Wedding Anniversary in our most usual custom, apart. Of course being apart isn’t by choice but rather been a part of our lives together from the start. First, because of duty and now because of career. Many of you, if not all of you know keeping a marriage together can be a difficult yet rewarding task but not without its lumps. About 5 or so months ago my husband and I had one of those rather large lumps, of those you had better learn how to climb a mountain or dig a path through one if you plan on making it through this. Before your imaginations run wild, there was no matter of infidelity involved so we best let that thought go. This was one of those “growing apart” and “having children changes things” situations.
~ Just follow me through this rather drawn out story. I must set a proper scene to get you to where I am going. Thanks for being patient. ~
We were one of those couples that rarely argued. I mean we had little fights and disagreements but not the big fights we were always were helping our other friends work out. Trust me, I took pride in knowing that we got along so well. At least until that one fateful day my world as I knew it came to an end. Seems I was living a lie. It was all a dream. I was obviously in shock, denial, and so many other mixed emotions but what came to me as the biggest surprise is that I was ok with it. For brief moments I felt if I lost it all that would be fine. It was so odd, I thought why wasn’t I fighting? I thought did my subconscience know something I didn’t? Needless to say it was a confusing time.
At this time I allowed myself to find comfort in my friends and family. It is something I NEVER do. I am a private person and my problems are my own. However, this time I felt it was different. I felt it was time I spoke with my family and friends about what had happened. I always hated burdening others with my drama. I used to put little value in myself, my feelings, and always put everyone else before me.
~ Boy, even I hope I know where I am going with this. ~
So after about a week of indecision, upset stomach, thoughts of nothing but what would happen to us, and our family. We finally had or BIGGEST argument ever. Even bigger than our initial conversation about how he felt about me, about us. I won’t go into the naughty tidbits but lets just say this… It ran into the wee daylight hours, involved him taking a long walk and getting lost, and a couple of nice gentlemen in uniforms. (At this time I’d like to inform all of you there was NO physical violence, so please do not let your imaginations run wild)
That fight was a revelation for both of us. We discovered neither of us were truly being honest with each other or even ourselves. One did one thing for another thinking that’s what they wanted while the other really didn’t even like what it was. ”Silence is Golden” does not apply to relationships people.
After we struggled for a couple of months we dedicated ourselves to always be open and honest with each other no matter what. As a result of what started as a fight and ended as a happy realization that we do love each other deeply we are more committed now than we even were from the start. We haven’t been this close in all our years of marriage. I’ve even got him drinking tea.
Today I celebrated my 15 year marriage.
Today I want you to celebrate all the wonderful relationships you have and could have as I remember Milly. A sweet gal that made me laugh and kept me wanting.
I wanted to bring you my story because of Milly and all the other people in our lives that mean so much to us and haven’t told. I know we all have simalar stories of our own. Sometimes, however we forget to tell those people closest to us or even those we only know because of the Internet just how much we care. Our time is short, spend it wisely.
Today I am reviewing a Jasmine “Dragon Pearls” Green Tea that was so kindly provided to me by Teavivre. Haven’t been wowed by many Jasmine teas in the past and I think the biggest reason is the artificial feel to the cup. Often times too much Jasmine makes it into the cup creating a strong perfume like flavor which is amazingly obvious. I was pleasantly surprised with this cup and hope the same positive words can be said for the remaining samples I have yet to make. This would be my second tea I have tasted from Teavivre. Both have helped me to regain hope that one day you can find a good cup of tea especially in a varietal that you thought you never would.
After allowing the tea to cool slightly I have come up a great personal association for it… a cup you can enjoy in a meadow full of blooming flowers in a peaceful spot with the sun warming your skin and a calm breeze bringing you peace.
Score: 4 of 5
Thanks for watching. As you can see I am still in he experimental state with these videos. I appreciate your support during my growth with this process.
Big News #1 – Paradise Island/Nassua, Bahamas (Well, I Hope)
It’s like I’m caught up in a whirlwind. One thought led to another to another. Then sudden decisions were made. Then somehow it was time for planning. Hold the mail, be sure all the bills are paid before we leave, oh my our daughter will be missing a lot of school. Need to find airfare, a place to stay, so much to do so little time. For the past two days I have been bombarded with questions, feelings were partial excitement, partial concerns that we are rushing things. I have never really been the type of girl that made large decisions on a whine but this one time all the pieces feel into place and before I knew it my daughter and I decided to tag along with my husband to the Bahamas on a trip of a lifetime. We will be there an amazing three weeks. The last time I spent a large number of days on vacation was when I went away to India and England for a Summer as a child. So you know last year or give or take a decade or two.
Now the bad news is we have our tickets booked but not my husbands yet. Considering we are going because of him this makes the worry wort in me a little nervous. His company wants to wait to confirm dates but most likely the schedule will remain as specified. However, nervous nonetheless.
My husband is one of those guys that does his job so well that he requested personally each time a job comes up, especially those high profile jobs and it is one of those situations holding us up right now. Everyone is always fighting for him.
At the moment, I am still waiting for the idea to sink in. The thought that “oh wow I’m going to the Bahamas.” I’m going to be soaking up the sun, (hope I don’t tan too much, kind of already have a natual tan. Don’t need extra help in that department) swimming in the pool, just plain relaxing. The fact that it’s happening in less than a month. “OH NO…NEED TO LOSE 50 POUNDS, NOW!!!”
Big News #2 – World Tea Expo – Las Vegas
Next, now this one I am so excited about. I have booked air travel and hotel in Las Vegas during the World Tea Expo. I have submitted an E-Mail to the proper person so that I may get a Media badge for myself and my technical guru and husband who is also a tea drinker and tea lover in the making. I haven’t gotten a reply back yet but I have no doubt that I will be awarded my prize. Of course, if I do you will be hearing from me behind the scenes just no photographs or video as it isn’t allowed. Nevertheless, it is my intention to bring you the news all about my exploits at the Expo. For this I am super gitty, plus this will be my first out of state vacation with just me and the hubby. My daughter will split her time between her aunt and her grandmother. Looks like all of us will be having an exciting time.
Big News #3 – Girls Only Trip – Mall of America in Minnosota for ScapFest 2012
I don’t have this one all booked yet but it will be my best friend and I that are confirmed going. I would love to know if anyone else here on Tea Trade will be attending as well. Would be a lot of fun to touch base. I’ll be crafting, taking classes, taking in the shopping and so much more.
What an exciting travel year it’s turning out to be.
A quick post about an oolong I received through my Steepster Select monthly tea subscription. A solid oolong by Harney & Sons but unfortunately, nothing I feel compelled to keep in my permanent tea cabinet.
First video tea review by me, Rachel of iHeartTeas.com.
I drank a tea sample so generously sent to me for review by the owner of BijaBody.
I hope you enjoy this video.
Please watch the video before reading below.
Review once the tea cooled:
The cup balances itself out more as it cools. The spicy flavor fades away a touch and the natural sweetness mellows. The earthiness also drops off a couple of notches. I start to taste the oolong more and the pu-erh on the back. I think this makes for a rather calming tea. Something to help put your mind at ease. Something to slow things down. In my opinion that is always a good thing.
Thanks again BijaBody for sending me this wonderful sample.
Score: 3.75 of 5
A basic look at what comes with the Breville One-Touch Tea Maker and how it works.
This is a very basic video meant only to show you a glimpse what this incredibly amazing machine can do.
Thanks for watching.
Please be gentle this is my first ever video that I have made with the intent of sharing with all my tea friends. It is a little long and a little boring but still I hope it captures my excitement I was feeling when I finally got my first chance to use this lovely Christmas gift I received from my dear husband @ralphcarterii
Today I tried my first of many tea samples I received so generously from Teavivre. I decided to give this one a try first but not for your typical reasons. There are those that eat dessert first and those that wait patiently after the main course. Even those that eat what they dislike most because your mom says you must eat it, afterall it’s good for you. In my case, I am having this first because historically I am a bit unimpressed with white teas. Basically I can live without them. All things considered, I will however try new white teas in hopes that maybe this time it will be different. I have enjoyed some in the past but it is rare and far in between and still not enough to keep any white teas permenately in my private stock. Before reviewing this tea I just wanted everyone to understand my history regarding white teas.
Tea: White Peony Tea (Bai MuDan)
Tea Company: Teavivre
1st Steep: Water Temp – 195ºF Steep Time – 2:30 mins
2nd Steep: Water Temp – 185ºF Steep Time – 3:00 mins
1st Steep: Upon my first sip; fresh from the pot, I honestly didn’t taste much. Once the liquid started to cool the flavors started to present themselves but you could swear they were trying their best to evade my tastebuds. So I rested my cup on the table and continued to pack away all the Christmas decoration all the while giving it a chance to further cool. After adequate time elasped I took yet another sip, then another, and yet again another and finally I could taste the ever so subtle flavors in my cup. They would first sneak up on me one by one and they finally like a choir all in concert playing well together. Still it was missing that “wow” factor for me. I tasted a light floral almost perfume like after taste and an almost paper like taste in the majority of the sip. I attempted another steep hoping for better results.
2nd Steep: Much better. I got a more distinct flavor profile this time. Of course it is still light in flavor, as expected of any white tea. However, this time there was a stronger more distint taste of dry paper. The floral aspect was also there but even more perfume like in nature. As it cooled it was nicer and I suspect it will taste refreshing as a cold brewed tea.
Overall Score: 3 of 5 – Pretty impressive for a gal who typically doesn’t think very much of white teas. Impressive indeed.
Let me start by saying that I am thankful January is here, majority of the major holidays have been celebrated and my daughters birthday is behind us. I mention this because finally I will hopefully have more time to make, enjoy, and review all of my new teas and old favorites. One of my New Years resoltions was to make time for such activities and hope that this is the start of more to come.
Tonight (Yes, tonight…caffine rarely causes an adverse reaction for me no matter the time of day) I decided to sample Hong Jing Luo a black tea from thepuriTea, also known as Golden Bi Lou. thepuriTea happens to be a personal favorite tea company of mine so I was very excited to try this one.
Tea Name: Hong Jing Luo (Black Tea) – thepuriTea
Preperation: Breville One-Touch Tea Maker
Tea Leaves Used: 2 teaspoons to make 2 cups (For me and the hubby)
Water Amt: 500ml – Required minimum for the Breville One-Touch Tea Maker
Water Temp: 212ºF
Steep Time: 3 mins – “Strong” setting on the Breville One-Touch Tea Maker
Results: The tea turned a lovely rich red rust, burgundy, with chocolate color. The leaves themselves were gorgeous in the bag. They were a lovely twisted deep brown leaf with golden strands. The flavor was lighter than expected. I was expecting a richer bolder flavor based on its appearance. I suppose that is why they say “don’t judge a book by its cover.” The characteristics that best describe this tea are listed below…
1. Lighter than expected but definitely can hold its own.
2. Obvious “dry wood” flavor as stated on the company description.
3. Ever so slightly sweet
Unfornately, I was unable to detect many of the other qualities and characteristics described on the company website I still did enjoy this tea. However, not as much as I have enjoyed other similar teas out there. Without a doubt it will be drank but I will not order more in the future only because I simply don’t need it. Please understand, it is a solid tea and I encourage you to try it. It is my growing palate that keeps me from enjoying this one as well today as I did the first time I tired it a year ago. To someone that tries this type of tea for the first time or has even tried a few similar types would more than likely rave about it. However, I am not your typical tea drinker and more varieties of teas have passed these lips then most average tea drinkers will never experience. So it may be that I am a touch more overly critical than your average tea drinker. A case of… “I know too much.” It is my own experience and exposure to tea that has forced me to under appreciate this cuppa.
Score: 3.5 of 5
Just recently ordered some more Milk Oolong. The freshest batch since they restocked. I found this to be just as delicious as the last batch. The only difference I noticed is as follows…
1. More delicate
2. More subtle creamyness
3. A lot more balanced in flavor
I made this first on December 31st 2011 and used it to make the first cup of tea using the new addition to the family… My Breville One-Touch Tea Maker and it did not disappoint. I made it again today 1/5/2012 to honor my daughters 5th Birthday and served it to my family. Everyone raved about it. Even my stereotypical “big black guy” brother in-law enjoyed it. He is normally a Gatorade kinda guy. (My statement isn’t meant to offend anyone. My bother in-law would laugh at my statement and if he isn’t offended no one else should be either. I am only mentioning this because I know it may come off wrong to those who don’t know me and my humor. Thanks!)