Saturday, January 26, 2013

Tea Guy Speaks Review Policies (Updated)


Tea Guy Speaks is a one-man show and doesn't do as many reviews as some of the other tea review sites. Here's our list of some of the best of those sites.

If you'd like to send samples for review, please read these guidelines first.

1. Given our slim resources, we only review tea that's a cut above the rest and that we feel is worthy of calling to the attention of our readers. Please send only your best.

2. No flavored teas. I've reviewed these in the past but I don't like them much and thus am not the best person to review them. What I'm most interested in reviewing is black tea, but I'm also open to green, yellow and the lighter grades of oolong.

3. Reviews are subjective, but we strive to give a fair, honest and constructive appraisal of the product under consideration.

4. We will disclose whether the product being reviewed has been supplied by a merchant.

5. We sometimes review products provided by a merchant with whom we have a prior relationship. We will disclose whether such a relationship exists.

6. We don't accept payments or gifts in exchange for reviews.

The Tea Enthusiast's Handbook: A Guide to the World's Best Teas

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Monday, January 21, 2013

Tea Review: English Tea Store Golden Heaven Yunnan

Here's another article I recently wrote for The English Tea Store blog.

Tea Review: English Tea Store Golden Heaven Yunnan
By William I. Lengeman III

I consider myself to be a rather avid fan of Assam tea, a black variety that hails from the Assam region of India. Although I’m always careful to note that Assam teas are definitely not all created equal and some of them are rather yucky, to be quite honest. But I’m such a fan of this tea that on two separate occasions I’ve devoted an entire month at my own tea site to considering its many and varied charms.

more

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Saturday, January 19, 2013

A Visit From the Tea Fairy

Here's another article I recently wrote for The English Tea Store blog.

A Visit From the Tea Fairy
By William I. Lengeman III

Is there such a thing as too much free tea? Oh, please. Perish the thought. But I will say that every once in a while I am presented with so much free tea that it almost seems a bit overwhelming. Not that it’s the worst thing that’s ever happened to me, mind you.

It went something like this. In the seven-plus years that I’ve been writing about tea, it seems that the samples have come to me in cycles of ebb and flow. Up until just about a month ago, I was definitely in a distinct...

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Tuesday, January 08, 2013

On “Bad” Tea Reviews

Here's another article I recently wrote for The English Tea Store blog.

On “Bad” Tea Reviews
By William I. Lengeman III

A couple months ago my own tea site moved into its eighth year of publication. Because it’s always been a one-man show, I obviously can’t hope to match the output of some of those big tea review sites, and quite honestly I don’t even try. I’ve only written about 150 reviews at my site over the years. If you look at some of the older ones you’ll probably find a few “bad” reviews. You won’t find many instances where I totally trashed a tea, with one or two rare exceptions in which I apparently got up on the wrong side of the teapot.

read the full article here

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Sunday, January 06, 2013

Tea Review 152 - Canton Tea Club Oolong

Xing Ren Dan Cong
Pouchong
Li Shan
Ali Shan
Hawaiian Makua Oolong

Canton Tea Club

I've never been a prolific tea reviewer. As you can see from the fact that this site has been around for seven-plus years and this is only review number 152. So while I welcome the fact that Canton Tea Club has been sending samples from their tea of the week program, there's no way I can ever hope to review them all.

But I would like to mention a few of the teas they've sent over the past few weeks, many of which seem to be of the oolong variety. If I were just a little bit more organized I'd have put together tasting notes on each of these five teas but alas, I have failed.

What I will say is that I liked all of these quite a bit and they're all worth your while. If you twisted my arm I guess I'd say that I liked the Li Shan and Ali Shan best, followed by the Pouchong. It was also interesting to try the Hawaiian Makua Oolong, which is just one of a number of samples of Hawaiian tea that have come to me by way of the club.

Image: Canton Tea Club
Sample provided by Canton Tea Club

Tea Guy Speaks Review Policies

Cuisinart TEA-100 PerfecTemp Programmable Tea Steeper

Saturday, January 05, 2013

Keurig, the K-Cup, and Tea

Here's another article I recently wrote for The English Tea Store blog.

Keurig, the K-Cup, and Tea
By William I. Lengeman III

One of the things I’ve learned over the course of many years of drinking, studying, and writing about tea is that everyone likes what they like and there really is no one correct way to do things. Of course, there are certain useful guidelines to follow if you want the best cup of tea – such as don’t oversteep or overheat your tea – but, when it comes to the mechanics of making tea, there are many ways to get the job done. A gongfu fancier might cringe at my practice of heating water in a Pyrex measuring cup in the microwave and steeping in a gravity-type infuser but it works well for me.

Having put in my plug for all of this goodness, light, and tolerance, I’m now going to...

read the full article here

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Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Tea Review 151 - English Tea Leaves English Breakfast

English Breakfast
English Tea Leaves

My year in tea ended with a bang this time around, with a rather vast bounty of samples of black tea being shipped in from assorted and sundry merchants. I'm not going to dwell much more on my love for black tea - I've beaten that dead horse rather thoroughly. But I really do love it.

Here's what English Tea Leaves has to say about their English Breakfast. My comments to follow:

Our English breakfast tea, which we call Tealeaves Breakfast, has been our #1 selling tea for the last 9 years. We make it using our own custom blend of Indian and Ceylonese black teas.

Which is not very specific as far as the origins of the teas that make up this blend, but that's kind of beside the point since it was one of the better English Breakfast blends that I've had the good fortune to sample. I'd guess that there's a good bit of Assam in this one, but what do I know? In any event, I can certainly see why this is a bestseller.

Image: English Tea Leaves
Sample provided by English Tea Leaves

Tea Guy Speaks Review Policies

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