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Archive for the ‘scented tea’ Category

The last two weeks I have felt physically crappy – some days better than other – but today is the worst.  I am in need of some sniffling, sneezing, aching, coughing, stuffy-head, fever, so-you-can-rest medicine!  It’s funny how, when feeling under the weather, we seek to surround ourselves with things that bring us comfort.  For some that means comfort food, for others comfy pajamas, a favorite blanket, or a childhood pillow.  Depending upon the ailment, there are times when hearing the voice of a spouse, loved-one, or best friend provide the needed level of comfort.  Sometimes it’s a hot steaming cup of tea.  The subject of today’s tea review and comfort of choice – Lavender Oolong.

Composition: Alishan oolong infused with natural lavender

Dry Visual: Light and dark green leaves tightly rolled with stems present.  Thanks to Naivetea for the great photo.

Dry Aroma: Delicately floral – the smell of lavender is unmistakable with a hint of oolong.

Flavor: Lavender Oolong is a lovely floral infused oolong.  The oolong is mild with a distinct floral quality – I’m sure you are not surprised – that is present in the cup from the first sip to the last.  Full-bodied, Lavender Oolong creates a heavy feel in the mouth.

There is no astringency, therefore Lavender Oolong can be enjoyed without sweetener.  There is, however, a mild dryness that becomes more pronounced throughout the cup and into the next infusion.  Nevertheless, I prefer to drink Lavender Oolong without sweetener.

Liquor: A yellow hue.

Brewing Time: I steeped Lavender Oolong in 190 degree water for  one minute during the first infusion and two minutes during the second infusion.

Manufacturer: Naivetea

Caffeine: Yes.

If you have had the opportunity to enjoy a cup of Lavender Oolong tea, please stop by and share your experience. Until then… Happy Tea Drinking!

**Tea was provided by Naivetea as a sample.

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When it’s cold and dreary outside, nothing is better in my humble opinion than the aroma of flowers.  During the winter months, the trees are barren of their leaves, the sky is often gray, and the lush grass of summer is long gone.  It is during these times that I miss the burst of color found in spring blooms and the fragrance of summer gardens.  This is when I reach for and savor the opportunity to sip a cup of scented tea.  Today’s choice – Jasmine Silver Needle – a sample I received from Adagio Teas.

Composition: White tea from China. Silver Needle is produced in the Fuding and Zhenhe districts of its Fujian province.

Dry Visual: Very green rolled leaves (resembling fat pine needles) with silver fur – hence the name.  Thanks Adagio Teas for the photo.

Dry Aroma: Sweet and amazingly floral – just like Jasmine.

Flavor: Jasmine Silver Needle is delightful. Traditional of white tea, Silver Needle itself is quite delicate and mild. However, after scented with jasmine becomes somewhat full-bodied.  It is naturally sweet and quite floral as one would expect.  To be frank, the jasmine dominates the flavor.  It is consistent from start to finish, yet never unpleasant.  Instead the floral taste and aroma provide an amazing sensory experience. I found myself alternately inhaling the steam and sipping the tea until gone.  Be advised if you are looking for the extremely delicate, clean taste of silver needle this is not where you will find it. Jasmine Silver Needle is in a category of its own.

I found the brew to have a hint of astringency (no bitterness, but a subtle dry feel in the mouth).  Nevertheless, no sweetener was needed nor would I recommend it.  I simply cannot imagine the impact sweetener would have on the floral characteristics of the tea.

Liquor: A rich yellow hue.

Brewing Time: According to the directions, the recommended steeping time is 7 minutes in 180 degree water. I steeped 7 minutes for the first infusion and 7 minutes 30 seconds for the second infusion.  I intend to play around a bit more with the steeping times as I am interested in discovering how Jasmine Silver Needle tastes with shorter infusion times.

Manufacturer: Adagio Teas

Caffeine: Yes.

If you have had the opportunity to enjoy a cup of Jasmine Silver Needle, please stop by and share your experience. Until then… Happy Tea Drinking!

**Tea was provided by Adagio as a sample.

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Many hellos to my fellow tea lovers! With all the things going on in our lives, its nice to enjoy a hot cuppa tea. One of my newest teas that I had the opportunity to taste was Jasmine Petal. 

Composition: Green tea grown on the Fujian Coast in China and Jasmine petals.

Dry Visual: Predominantly very green twisted tea leaves with golden flecks that I assume are the Jasmine Petals. Considering this tea is contained in sachets it I did not have the clearest visual. Thanks Two Leaves and A Bud for the picture.

Dry Aroma: Mildly vegetal with a hint of Jasmine. However the wet aroma was very floral – Jasmine of course.

Flavor: Jasmine was the predominant flavor; however, this tea was a little more vegetal than I expected. I believe the green tea undertones were fighting for presence which created a slight bitterness. Jasmine Petal can be enjoyed with or without sweetener, however, I added a little honey which rounded out the flavor and eliminated the bitterness.

Liquor: A dark amber color.

Brewing Time: Recommended brewing time is 4 minutes. I brewed for the recommended 4 minutes.

Manufacturer: Two Leaves and A Bud

Caffeine: Yes.

If you have had the opportunity to enjoy a cup of Jasmine Petal Tea please stop by and comment. Until then… Happy Tea Drinking!

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For two days, I have gone without tea. No particular reason, just a freak of nature. Thus imagine my excitement as I brewed a cup of tea this afternoon. I was thrilled to enjoy a second cup of Jasmine Pearls, my very first “scented tea”. I cannot wait to share this unique experience.

Composition: Fujian’s spring-harvested green tea buds and two lower leaves scented with jasmine flowers.

Dry Visual: Minature, absolutely adorable, light and dark green balls. Only a picture can adequately describe this tea. Thanks Pearl Teas for the picture.

Dry Aroma: Somewhat vegetal – unfortunately the dry aroma does nothing for Jasmine Pearls. It is the wet aroma that blew me away. All I can say is WOW! After steeping the smell of jasmine was simply amazing.

Flavor: Jasmine Pearls is probably one of the more unique teas I have had the pleasure of brewing and drinking. There is a mild green tea flavor, however jasmine has the dominant influence. Not overbearing, yet dominant nonetheless. I was stunned by the floral quality of Jasmine Pearls as well as the full-bodied character of the tea. I think a wine comparison would be more apropos. Jasmine Pearls carried the weight of a port in the mouth as opposed to a white Zinfandel.

Jasmine Pearls is truly a delicious tea. No sweetener is required although I did add a little honey to the second half of my first cup. I will often do so when tasting a new tea to identify the impact of sweetener on the brew. I certainly prefer without. 

Liquor: A golden color.

Brewing Time: Recommended brewing time is 1 to 2 minutes.  I brewed for the recommended 2 minutes.

Manufacturer: Pearl Fine Teas

Caffeine: Yes.

 More Information about jasmine scented teas:

Jasmine tisane is consumed in China, where it is called Jasmine flower tea (pinyin: mò lì huā chá). Jasminum sambac flowers are also used to make tea, which often has a base of green tea, but sometimes an Oolong base is used. The delicate Jasmine flower opens only at night and is plucked in the morning when the tiny petals are tightly closed. They are then stored in a cool place until night. Between six and eight in the evening, as the temperature cools, the petals begin to open. Flowers and tea are “mated” in machines that control temperature and humidity. It takes four hours or so for the tea to absorb the fragrance and flavour of the Jasmine blossoms, and for the highest grades, this process may be repeated as many as seven times. Because the tea has absorbed moisture from the flowers, it must be refired to prevent spoilage. The spent flowers may or may not be removed from the final product, as the flowers are completely dry and contain no aroma. Giant fans are used to blow away and remove the petals from the denser tea leaves. If present, they simply add visual appeal and are no indication of the quality of the tea.

References: Jasmine. (2008, September 9). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 20:20, September 10, 2008, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Jasmine&oldid=237307146

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