Tea Time at Reverie: Teasenz’s Ali Shan Milky Oolong Tea

Oolongs are wonderfully versatile when it comes to flavor. They can be floral, vegetal, fruity, honeyed – or, in this case, milky. It sounds like a weird combination, but it’s actually not so far-fetched. Find out why in my review of Teasenz’s Ali Shan Milky Oolong at A Bibliophile’s Reverie.

Also, I’ll be “off the grid” for the Thanksgiving holiday. I should be back on social media either Sunday or Monday, and my next blog post will go live on Monday as well. Until then, have a good rest of your week and a Happy Thanksgiving!

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Awwww, we’re down to our final Teasenz sample! I’ve really enjoyed trying this Chinese vendor’s selections over the past year. Each has been of superb quality, to the point that I know I’ll be a customer in the future. 😉

So, what have I saved for last from Teasenz? Ali Shan Milky Oolong. (Yes, the name does sound strange if you’ve never heard of it before.) This particular kind of tea is grown only in Taiwan, in the country’s Ali Shan Mountain region. According to Teasenz, the area’s soil conditions and the production methods used for these leaves bring out a unique milk flavor and creaminess. Read on to find out how these qualities manifest once Ali Shan Milky Oolong is brewed.

The Basics

Teasenz Ali Shan Milky Oolong 1 Photo courtesy of Teasenz

Teasenz’s Description:Intense creamy taste with floral undertone. A one-of-a-kind tea from Taiwan with a fantastically creamy flavor resulting from its unique roasting process. Our Ali Shan…

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5 on the 5th: Five Delicious Black Teas to Try This Fall

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On the fifth day of each month, 5 on the 5th shares five of something that I like or recommend to readers. Whether it’s five items that share a common theme, or five reasons why I like the topic at hand, this monthly meme gives us an opportunity to talk about other subjects that aren’t normally discussed here at the blog. 

Ah, fall. I’m not the biggest fan of this season, but I love many foods that are associated with it: soup, apple cider, pumpkin pie… and black tea! Well, yes, I do drink black tea year-round. But I know other people take a break from it during the warmer months and then come back to it as the nights get cooler and the leaves start to fall. So, what better way to kick off autumn than trying some new black teas? Here are five I highly recommend, along with links in case you feel tempted. 😉
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Time Flies!: September 2015

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Welcome to the latest edition of Time Flies! It’s my version of a monthly update, where I recap the past month’s accomplishments and articles, share news and random things from my offline life, and hint at what may be coming in the month ahead.

It can’t be fall. September can’t be over. I refuse to believe it!

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See? Even Pikachu agrees!

Ah, well. Denial only works for so long, right? And in some ways, I really enjoyed September. But in other ways, I ran myself into the ground halfway through the month. You probably noticed the massive output of articles over the past two months, not only here but at DIY MFA and other guest posts. In short, I demanded too much from myself over a short period of time – which led to a case of blogging fatigue. (A crazier-than-usual work schedule also didn’t help things…) I still pushed through it to stay on top of my writing, but I let a lot of other things (visiting other blogs, commenting on posts, etc.) slide because I’d simply lost the energy. And it’s not the first time I’ve done this to myself, either.

This time, I need to ensure I’ve learned my lesson. Which, in this case, means no extra blogging assignments for a while, apart from two October guest posts I’ve already committed to for DIY MFA and The Sprint Shack. More on both articles when each goes live.

All right. Let me give you a chance to catch up on the past month’s posts now:

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Tea Time at Reverie: Teasenz’s Love At First Sight Blooming Tea

A number of readers enjoyed learning about blooming tea when I first reviewed it for A Bibliophile’s Reverie. So, how about another one? 😉 Teasenz was kind enough to send two blooming tea samples; and today I offer my thoughts on the second sample, the delicate and refined Love At First Sight Blooming Tea.

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It’s blooming tea time again! Teasenz was generous enough to include two different blooming tea samples for our review. We’ve already covered their delightful Oriental Beauty Blooming Tea here. Today, we turn the spotlight to Love At First Sight Blooming Tea. This bouquet of green tea and flowers sounds similar to Oriental Beauty in terms of ingredients. So, will the infusion also taste similar? Let’s bring out the glass teapot and find out.

The Basics

Teasenz’s Description:Sweet, smooth and delicate, this famous blooming tea from Fujian Province blossoms into beautiful flowers when infused. After enjoying the tea, preserve the enchanting view of Love at First Sight for up to five days in a glass of cold water. Refresh the water once a day.”

Ingredients: Green tea leaves, globe amaranth, jasmine, marigold, and calendula blossoms

Steeping Instructions: Use 1 blooming tea ball for every 8 oz of…

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Time Flies!: June 2015

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Welcome to the latest edition of Time Flies! It’s my version of a monthly update, where I recap the past month’s accomplishments and articles, share news and random things from my offline life, and hint at what may be coming in the month ahead.

Is anyone else having a hard time believing that 2015 is now halfway over? Insane, isn’t it? But so far, 2015 has been an awesome year. Creatively, personally,… and now statistically! Because of your visits, comments, social media shares, and reblogs, this site has already topped 2014’s total page view counts – meaning it’s having its best year EVER. Thank you all so, SO much for your support and feedback. It means the world to me. And that’s going to make next month’s blogoversary that much sweeter. 😀

Which reminds me: I’m still taking questions for Eva’s blogoversary character interview! Submissions will be accepted through 11:59 pm on Friday, July 3rd. Click here for details and to see which questions have been asked so far.

Now, on to this month’s summary!

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Time Flies!: May 2015

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Welcome to the latest edition of Time Flies! It’s my version of a monthly update, where I recap the past month’s accomplishments and articles, share news and random things from my offline life, and hint at what may be coming in the month ahead.

Hope you all had a wonderful May! This past month proved to be just as busy – if not even busier – as others have been this year, even with a “stay-cation” halfway through. So let’s get right to the recap, starting with what happened at the blog:

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Tea Time at Reverie: Teasenz’s Oriental Beauty Blooming Tea

Another first for Tea Time At Reverie: Our first blooming tea! Chinese vendor Teasenz was kind enough to send a sample of their Oriental Beauty Blooming Tea, which combines Silver Needle White tea leaves with jasmine, globe amaranthe, and lily for a refreshing, delightful tisane. And since it’s blooming tea, the brewing process is truly a wonder to behold. Read on to learn more about Oriental Beauty and how blooming teas are crafted – and check out some photos I took while the tea brewed! (Hey, I didn’t want you to miss out on the best part. *wink*)

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Today marks another first for us: our first blooming tea review! Teavana fans might already been familiar with this unique artisan tea from China. If you aren’t, here’s a quick lesson.

Blooming tea combines traditional tea leaves (usually green or white) with flowers such as osmanthus, jasmine, lilies, marigolds, and globe amaranths. The leaves and flowers are sewn together, then rolled and shaped into a ball and held together by cotton threads. When the tea ball is immersed in hot water, it unfurls to reveal its colorful blossoms. Hence the tea’s namesake. 😉 Click here to learn more about blooming tea.

Our friends at Teasenz volunteered to send two blooming tea samples for review. The first one we’ll cover is Oriental Beauty Blooming Tea, a refreshing mix of floral and fruit flavors. And because this is blooming tea, I took some photos to go along with the review! You…

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Time Flies!: March 2015

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Welcome to the latest edition of Time Flies! It’s my version of a monthly update, where I recap the past month’s accomplishments and articles, share news and random things from my offline life, and hint at what may be coming in the month ahead.

Happy Spring, everyone! 😀 Even though it’s been an abnormally cold March here in Massachusetts, I feel lighter in heart knowing that my favorite season has finally arrived. Pretty soon, leaves will bud on the trees, flowers will bloom, and temperatures will be just warm enough so I can resume my outdoor walks. Lush, green, colorful, fresh… *sighs with contentment*

Spring means more to me than nature’s re-awakening after its winter slumber, though. It also marks an anniversary for me, one of a spiritual and emotional turnaround after a bout of situational depression. My poem “Eve of Spring” talks about this a little bit. If you’re interested, you can read the poem here or here.

What else have I been up to this past month? Check out the recaps below:

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Tea Time at Reverie: Teasenz’s Fujian Silver Needle White Tea

With spring just around the corner, now is the perfect time to try some refreshing white teas. One lovely choice from Teasenz is their Fujian Silver Needle, a prized Chinese white tea named after its abundance of silvery, down-covered buds. Find out more about Teasenz’s Fujian Silver Needle White Tea, including why it’s an ideal companion beverage for journaling and meditation, at my latest Tea Time at A Bibliophile’s Reverie!

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Few white teas are as well-known as China’s Silver Needle. Consisting almost exclusively of silky, unopened buds, Silver Needle leaves are plucked by hand during a few select days in the spring harvest. This tea is so prized in China that locals often save their reserves for weddings, the New Year, and other special occasions. Teasenz graciously sent us a sample of their Fujian Silver Needle White Tea for review, and I’m happy to tell you more about this light-as-a-butterfly infusion today.

The Basics

Teasenz Silver Needle loose Photo courtesy of Teasenz

Teasenz’s Description:Enjoyed exclusively by the imperial family in China for centuries, the Silky Silver Needle is a top-grade white tea with a soft, smooth, and silky-sweet taste experience. An ethereal cup with a lingering fragrance and refreshing aftertaste. Pure and refreshing.”

Ingredients: Silver Needle white tea leaves

Steeping Instructions: Use 1 tsp of tea for every 3 oz of water…

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Time Flies: December 2014 Edition

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Looking for this month’s Freelance Article Round-Up? It’s here – under a new name!

The Freelance Article Round-Up series will now be known as Time Flies!, a monthly wrap-up article that… well, does exactly what the Freelance Article Round-Ups had been doing. Originally, the round-ups were designed to share my columnist projects at A Bibliophile’s Reverie, Grub Street, and DIY MFA. Then I started including other happenings related to writing, this blog, and life in general. And so the round-ups evolved into something more – and a couple weeks ago, I realized the title didn’t fit the purpose anymore. What do you think of the new name? And the new logo? 🙂

Let’s jump right in with this month’s updates: Continue reading