Tried this again several times, with different leaf to water ratios and steep times. The experience remains fairly consistent. The first 6 steeps or so can be fairly pleasant, but after that, it becomes terribly smoky no matter how carefully I filter it. It is not the enjoyable peatiness of a Laphroaig, but a thick, dirty feeling coat in the mouth and throat like you’ve been gagged with a huge wad of soggy cigarette butts. This is decidedly not what I am looking for in a young sheng, and if this is what’s “necessary” to get a certain taste profile when aged, I’m still not interested, because it really just tastes gross after ~5 cups and I will never be able to dis-associate that yuckiness from a related taste profile.

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I’ll not adore every popular tea. Nor shall I always prepare it skillfully enough to do it justice and understand it before the sample is gone. Also, my search is for teas that are delicious now. I don’t know yet what will age well.

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