Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Steepster, Jasmine Pearl Select

Steepster Description:
Picked from the Da Bai Hao cultivar, this high grade green tea is gently picked and hand rolled. The tea is then meticulously dried with fresh jasmine to impart its distinct floral aroma and flavor.

Origin: Fujian, China

My Review:
Steepster is an online community of tea drinkers. We share reviews as expected but it is the social aspect that keeps me involved. If you are a tea lover, you should come join us.

The creators of Steepster put together a samples of the month type subscription that many signed up to receive. This tea has its origins with Steepster Select. I received it in a tea swap. Examining the sample I am puzzled as to its point. Steepster is not a tea company. If I like it, where do I get more of it? I don't have an answer. I guess its purpose is to introduce you to new types of tea and not a particular tea.

My next issue is that the bottom of the unopened sample was not sealed properly. This happens. I have never seen a complaint from any of the Select members. I mention it here because it potentially affects the rest of the review.

I removed the pearls for examination. They still smell very fresh. The jasmine is aromatic with hints of grapes and honeysuckle. The pearls are very solid. They sounded like marbles as they hit the exam plate. They also seem smaller than previous pearls I have encountered.

I placed the pearls into my clear glass teapot and added 10 oz of 200 F water. This steeped for two minutes. The steeping information was clearly displayed on the sample envelope. As you can see the leaf exploded in the water. It was one of the liveliest dances I have witnessed in a long while. I applaud and celebrate the event. I believe this is the first time I have had tightly rolled leaf that completely unfurled on the first steep.

Some of the wet leaf is quite large. There is also an amount of buds with two small leaves. It seems more common for better tea to be of uniform leaf size.

The liquor is slightly yellow tinted in the pot and very clear. In the mug it turns much more honey colored. The taste was kind of metallic. I wasn't expecting that. I added a little sweetener to tame it. The jasmine is pleasant and natural tasting. I just don't care for the metallic note in my cup of jasmine.

I hate being overly critical, especially of Steepster's Select subscription. It is certainly not undrinkable and I think had I gone with a shorter steep time I would have enjoyed it more. That being said I hope the next few Steepster samples impress me a bit more.

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