Tea Time Five: Oddities from Adagio

Only two this week, we didn’t have much time. Two again next week; Kae’s out of town, so we’ve prepped it in advance.

Sample: Pu erh poe from Adagio Teas

Description:  One of the five main types of tea (white, green, oolong and black being the others), pu’erh tea stands apart with its uncommonly soft earthy flavor and woodsy tones. Unlike all other teas, pu’erh (pronounced ‘poo-err’) is actually aged. The tea leaves go through a natural fermentation process before the tea is gently dried. This creates a cup with zero astringency and deep, rich body. Pu’erh is extraordinarily smooth and deeply refreshing. Our Pu’erh Poe (the shou variety of pu’erh) gives a clean, woodsy aroma, warm hay inside a barn, mushrooms and savory vegetables. Wilted flower notes and a faint dark chocolate texture. Mellow and grounding. If the flavor is too strong for you, simply dilute with water (which, interestingly, doesn’t work for many other teas!) Pu’erh is extremely versatile – you can steep it for as little as 30 second or 30 minutes, whatever pleases your palate. It won’t get bitter and is great for multiple infusions.

Preparation: Stepped for 4 minutes at 212F

Review: Chaos announced loudly that he was going to take a sip, in anticipation of hating it. He then looked amazingly surprised as he uttered, “Huh. That’s not terrible!” Kae was wary as well, because it smelled “kind of like a garden”. He tried a sip then made some odd faces. “It’s not bitter,” he conceded, “but it tastes the way it smells, kind of a vegetable taste.” “It’s interesting,” replied Chaos. Yami decided “It tastes like green tea, not black”; however, it’s sorted under black teas on the website. Kae decided “it’s actually pretty decent with sugar”, though Yami decided she didn’t like it for the same reasons she doesn’t like green tea. Kae tried adding milk, for completion’s sake; he decided “it’s not bad”.

Would Buy? Yami wouldn’t. Kae likes it, declaring it “one of the best so far”, but it’s “definitely a once-in-a-while thing”. Chaos decided he might buy it because “it’d be good every once in a while.”


SampleForest Berries by Adagio

Description: Rescue experts say that if you ever get separated from your party while hiking through the woods, your best bet is to stay where you are. You probably shouldn’t eat the berries you find there, either. But, as long as you’ve got a cup of Forest Berries Black tea, you’ll have nothing to worry about. Brisk Ceylon black tea, savory ripe summer berries create a tea with a comforting, sweet earthy aroma and deeply fruity flavor and finish.

Preparation: Steeped for 4 minutes at 212F

Review: It smells incredibly fruity. Kae declared that unsweetened, it’s a bit weak but not bitter and he can taste the berries; he almost wants to say it should steep longer. Yami couldn’t taste much but water with a hint of almost-flavor hidden in it. Kae notes that sugar brings out a little more of the berry; Yami added sugar and exclaimed, “holy shit, that’s much better!” as she finally tasted some sort of berry. Kae declared milk “not bad either, kind of a berries and cream thing.” Chaos, pestered for an opinion, decided “Wow, that is actually pretty good with sugar.”

Would Buy? Yami thinks the berry teas have promise and wants to try more in the future. Kae agreed heartily, announcing “it’s nice to have one they didn’t fuck up”, and Chaos agreed as well, though more stoically.

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