4 Tasting Notes
I’ve tried this for the third time today and I have about 5g left.
Initially and each time, I was disappointed with this tea as it takes off very slow. The first 3-4 steeps have you wondering how this could’ve ever passed EoT quality control, it’s thin and flat, yet bitterish, leathery and sour – like many of the forgettable low-quality productions from the times of the pu-erh craze (2006-2007). Gradually, however, things gets better and signs of maturity like notes of old books and woody sweetness (no red fruits though) start to come out. Around the eighth steep the flavour profile is fully developed and the tea is round enough to satisfy.
Unfortunately, although it never was really smooth to begin with, later steeps also produce more adstringency and the mouthfeels becomes somewhat gritty. Nevertheless, this one gave me a few decent cups.
To conclude, I think the price of 144USD is too high, considering that 149USD can get you something very “proper” in the matured pu-erh depatrment. Yes, I mean W2T’s HK Style.
Edit: After 10-12 steeps I wouldn’t speak of Qi, but I found its caffeine-level to be just right. I’m alert yet not agitated.
The first, say, 20 times I drank this tea were great, and if I’d rated it back then, it would have been a solid 90, perhaps even higher. But having reached the centre of the beeng, with all the pretty leaves from the outside used up, I feel like the core is too tight and there’s a lot of broken leaf. The taste is not as good as I remember it from earlier steepings. It’s still alright, just a little flat, less interesting and the bitterness is more pronounced without adding depth.