I'm new and have a few questions


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I'm new and have a few questions

Postby jpetty421 » Oct 12th, '07, 11:20

I am new to tea and the forums, but I have been lurking through them and learning for like a month before I dove in and bought a triniTEA and a bunch of greens and blacks, and silver needle and a few rooibos from Adagio; and Sencha, Morrocan Mint and Choconut Green from Teavana. I puchased the triniTEA because it was like "making tea for dummies"--I figured I couldn't mess up. But all my teas seem to taste funny; with an aftertaste. And why do Teavana's teas have lower brewing times and temps for EVERY tea of theirs compared to Adagio's? After reading a large number of posts I have purchased a Zojirushi which should arrive by next Tuesday, and have written a few steep ideas from the "pros" I have spotted on here, and will come back from time to time with my questions and 2 cents. I am just ordered a bunch of samles from Adagio (with basically every green they sell-my favorite tea), and will buy samples from teavana to compare. Is there anywhere else where people know have better quality teas that I should be looking? Thanks to anyone who reads and responds to this, I know it was more than a mouthful
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Postby Mary R » Oct 12th, '07, 13:13

Hm. The aftertaste is odd. I have a veritable ton of Adagio samples of all the different varieties and have never noticed a weird, non-tea-like aftertaste. In fact, one of the worst aftertaste offenders I've tried was a Teavana blend. :)

Based on that, I'd pin the aftertaste culprit to either your water or the Trinitea. If you're using tap water, you may want to run it through a Brita or something before making tea. Chlorine and things can make the tea taste off. I'd also give the Trinitea a thorough cleaning.

As far as the temperatures go...it's all really just ball-park. I think Adagio tries to give an easy approximation and stress that greens, whites, and some oolongs, shouldn't be brewed with boiling water. A lot of new tea makers don't make that distinction. Teavana, on the other hand, tries to present an image of being complete experts--their shop employees are actually called 'teaologists.' I actually disagree with a few of the Teavana temperature guidelines...but really, that's all they are--guidelines, not rules.
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Postby Space Samurai » Oct 12th, '07, 13:27

Mary R wrote:Based on that, I'd pin the aftertaste culprit to either your water or the Trinitea. If you're using tap water, you may want to run it through a Brita or something before making tea. Chlorine and things can make the tea taste off. I'd also give the Trinitea a thorough cleaning.


She's not kidding. The other morning, I made tea with unfiltered tap water for the first in two years. As I was drinking my tea, I kept thinking, what's that funny taste? Oh yeah, I used tap water.
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Postby ABx » Oct 12th, '07, 13:51

As far as where else to get teas, I've got a list of my favorite places on my blog:
http://abx-tea.blogspot.com/2007/05/pla ... y-tea.html
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Postby LavenderPekoe » Oct 12th, '07, 14:15

ABx - I was reading though your list (skimming it really) and I saw that you listed Todd & Holland. Do you actually know, or have you ever bought anything from there? The prices are outrageous and I was wondering if they put something in their tea to make it "worth" so much.
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Postby ABx » Oct 12th, '07, 14:48

I have not bought from them, and for the same reason you state. I've seen forum posts elsewhere that mentioned that they have good teas, but I really have no idea. They may well have some super high grade stuff that makes the prices worth it, and to be fair not all of their prices are so high, but I really don't know.
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Postby jpetty421 » Oct 12th, '07, 17:17

I have never used tapwater once...I use bottled spring water for all of my tea
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Postby skywarrior » Oct 13th, '07, 00:25

spacesamurai wrote:
Mary R wrote:Based on that, I'd pin the aftertaste culprit to either your water or the Trinitea. If you're using tap water, you may want to run it through a Brita or something before making tea. Chlorine and things can make the tea taste off. I'd also give the Trinitea a thorough cleaning.


She's not kidding. The other morning, I made tea with unfiltered tap water for the first in two years. As I was drinking my tea, I kept thinking, what's that funny taste? Oh yeah, I used tap water.


I want to third this notion. I used to boil tap water but we had high mineral content in the water and it actually left a hard mineral residue in my teapot. :shock: So, get yourself a Brita filter. I also agree with Mary to give your Trintea a cleaning, but also rinse it VERY well. Soap can really make it taste oddly.
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Postby Chip » Oct 13th, '07, 01:56

I am blessed with a great well...great water.

I bottle my own and use it at home and work. I can't stand tap water, really throws the flavor and aroma of tea way off.

Oh, welcome to TeaChat!
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Postby jpetty421 » Oct 13th, '07, 20:33

As I said, I only use bottled spring water, NOTHING else. From lurking all over this forum and a lot of other online high quality tea retailers (especially the ones actually IN JAPAN), I think the directions given by Adagio for brewing their green teas and since the "I" setting for the temperature of green tea on the triniTEA is 180 degrees, the 2-3 minute steep time is too long and the water too hot. I will be getting a Zojirushi by Tuesday, and will be able to use water under 175 degrees, and I will steep it for 1-2 minutes.
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Postby Space Samurai » Oct 13th, '07, 22:05

I've never used a Trinitea, but my Zarafina makes an absolute crap cup of green tea, so I wouldn't be at all surprised if that were your problem.
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Postby ABx » Oct 14th, '07, 00:40

I actually keep my zoji at 208. Pouring water at 208 into a room temp vessel immediately drops the temp to 180, for me, which is about perfect for greens. So when you get it you might see how much it cools it for you before you use a lower temp setting.
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Postby jpetty421 » Oct 14th, '07, 22:02

ABx wrote:I actually keep my zoji at 208. Pouring water at 208 into a room temp vessel immediately drops the temp to 180, for me, which is about perfect for greens. So when you get it you might see how much it cools it for you before you use a lower temp setting.



WOW, a 28 degree temp drop??? Is this normal for any other Zoji users?? I have read a number of threads where users are "pre-heating" their infusion source by pouring some 175 degree water for example in and then dumping it and filling it again and then adding the tea. Why don't you just do that?
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Postby Mary R » Oct 14th, '07, 22:12

As ABx mentioned, 180ºF is just about perfect for greens...and when you're a junkie looking for a fix, you're going to go for expediency every time.
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