From the Beginner’s Pu’erh TTB.

Brewed semi-gongfu/semi-Western method with a glass test tube steeper. Amount of leaf leaf is actually 1.8g since that was all that was left. No rinse. Steeping times: 1 min, 1’ 30", 2’, 4’, 8’.

This Dian Hong has the most hot cocoa-like aroma I’ve encountered thus far. I smelled malt the first second I stuck my nose in the packet but it quickly paved the way for a powerful chocolate powder. I may be fooled if I were blindfolded. Having sat in the heated steeper, and being washed with water after the first infusion, the cocoa is magnified. Chocolate deluxe. Death by chocolate.

The liquor is beautifully golden orange, having a full body and creamy texture. The fannings and small bits were about a fourth of the amount of leaf I took from the packet, and I had thought they contributed the strong malty note one would in certain Assams. However, that seems to be a characteristic of this Dian Hong. The malt stays the entire session, but gradually lessons a little. Inverse proportion: there is hint of honey-molasses sweetness in the second infusion but the sweetness strengthens.

Overall, rich and strong. A good Dian Hong for every day, especially when one’s spirits need lifting and you’d want a nice hongcha.

2 g 5 OZ / 147 ML

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I began drinking tea because its complexity fascinated me. I love learning about its history, its manufacturing processes, and its place in various cultures.

Japanese greens were my first love and gateway into the world.

My favorite teas are leafhopper oolongs, pu’erh (shou and sheng), and masala chai. My favorite herbal tisanes are spear/peppermint, lavender and chrysanthemum.

I’m currently exploring pu’erh, and any Chinese and Taiwanese teas in general. I’m not much into flavored teas, unlike when I first started. The only teas I truly dislike are fruity tisanes and the ones that have too much fruit. I do like hisbiscus, especially iced.

I like to write nature essays. I’m a birdwatcher as well as a tea enthusiast. The kiwi is one of my favorite birds. I also like Tolkien, Ancient Egypt, and exercising.

IMPORTANT NOTE, PLEASE READ: After two and a half years of having an account here, I will no longer will provide numerical ratings as an addition to the review because the American school system has skewed my thoughts on numbers out of a hundred and the colors throw me off. Curses! My words are more than sufficient. If I really like what I have, I will “recommend”, and if I don’t, “not recommended”.

Key for past ratings:

96-100 I adore absolutely everything about it. A permanent addition to my stash.

90-95 Superb quality and extremely enjoyable, but not something I’d necessarily like to have in my stash (might have to do with personal tastes, depending on what I say in the tasting note).

80-89 Delicious! Pleased with the overall quality.

70-79 Simply, I like it. There are qualities that I find good, but there also are things that aren’t, hence a lower rating that I would have otherwise like to put.

60-69 Overall “meh”. Not necessarily bad, but not necessarily good.

0-59 No.

If there is no rating: I don’t feel experienced enough to rate the tea, or said tea just goes beyond rating (in a positive way).


Westchester, NY

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