The dry leaf of this tea smells melon fruity delicious. Tossing the leaves into a warm gaiwan, I notice a wet hay smell that I typically associate with silver needle and bai mu dan teas.
The first steep (20s at 175F) brews up a little bit lighter in color than a shou mei. It’s delicious and thick with notes of sweet citrus and spices. I notice a little bit of bitterness on the finish that I think could have been avoided by cutting this first steep down to 15s. This is the bottom of my sample bag as well so I think some of the broken leaves probably contributed to that.
It’s hard to believe that this tea isn’t scented or flavored in any way (I mean that in a good way). The citrus flavor is so obvious and sweet.
This tea continues to be delicious in subsequent steeps despite my accidental overbrewing. Note to anyone who reads this comment before trying this tea for the first time – use lighter parameters than you normally would for a strip oolong. I would start at 15s followed by 10s, 10s, 15s, 20s, etc.
Flavors: Citrus, Orange, Spices, Sweet, Thick