I'd be interested in negative notes & would like to encourage you to post them. Don't feel bad; you're potentially helping other people out & also making any positive notes you post more meaningful. As long as you provide sufficient context on your personal perspective (how much experience you have with that kind of tea, disclose if you make any money with tea, etc.), it's a contribution I'd like to read.Tea Serpent wrote: ↑Sun Nov 12, 2023 5:49 pmI was surprised to see so much praise for Taiwan Tea Crafts here. I tried many samples from them, but found them mostly underwhelming. A few were good, but none were great. I wonder if anyone here could help me figure out whether my impression reflects TTC's actual quality or might be my own fault for bad timing or bad storage.
First, I ordered their tea in late August and drank it mostly in September and October. Is that just too late or "out of season" for green tea and light oolongs that were picked in spring? (I'm more used to Japanese green tea, which seems to be good in any season, maybe because the sellers keep them refrigerated. I have no idea how TTC stores their tea.)
Second, I chose the slowest shipping option, which took like a month, and I wonder if all that time in warm weather was damaging. When ordering tea from far away, is it generally important to choose fast shipping for freshness, especially in summer?
I took some notes that I could share (similar to Randy the Intern above, including some of the same teas, but with very different opinions), if it would be fair to post them despite the caveats.
If kept sealed, consuming a few months after buying is normal for greens & oolongs, even if stored outside the fridge (though best to put them in, if not consuming immediately). If I unseal & don't try pretty much immediately, I'd refrain from posting negatively, although, practically speaking, the oolong will be fine for a good while (sometimes it gets better, esp. roasted varieties), while some greens will be significantly worse in a week or less. Except, some people seem less sensitive to this immediate staleness of greens: some don't notice it for 2 weeks or maybe are accustomed to the taste, since it *kinda* goes in the direction of more oxidized teas, but I find it distinct and personally try to avoid it & enjoy greens without it, though sometimes it's present right out of the freshly unsealed pack.
I have also wondered about slow shipping during summer months. I've received good tea (incl. greens) this way, but maybe some of the "bad" tea I got was just unlucky and spent a long time in some extremely hot storehouse? I still think it's mostly the tea, as it was shielded from direct sunlight & probably didn't spend that much time in one place, but I try to order stuff that I already know during the summer & try new teas/shops outside of the summer months, removing a potential variable.