I’m having a hard time uploading pictures…oh well.
I’ve had a few teas, and I will say the last two weeks have been tough. We’re back on lockdown…again…in the two weeks after we went fully in person. 1/2 of our students had to self quarantine and then less showed up. A lot of them are afraid, tired, drained, lost, and feeling like their in a weird place. Others are trying to push forward and keep up the good pace they’ve been on. I won’t go into much more detail than that, but I needed a recharge this weekend before I go into work. Specifically, work tonight and for tomorrow morning. So I drank some of this tea today, and I’m beginning with a little mental success of completing my little expo over something I enjoy.
I decided to splurge on this and another sample since I had some saved up. It was $12 for 25 grams, and was not quite sure what to expect. The description is unusually short on the website, but vivid, focusing on the orchid profile, sweetness, and “distinct” fruitiness, implicating buddha fruit and passion fruit.
Going back to the tea, I would say tasting it blind, I’d think it was a Li Shan with how intensely fruity and aromatic it is. The orchids were prominent and the tea was sweet dry and wet; yet, the fruits pick up intensely in the second brew gong fu and the first steep western. Melon, gardenia and lightly cooked peaches personally came to mind, and it was extremely lush. I know I’ve used those notes for other High Mountain oolong teas, but it was dense and yielding. I got seven solid steeps in the gong fu, each fruity until steep eight. I did the 30 second measurement for that one, and about 5 grams for 5 oz. I could have gone heavier, but the aroma was perfect.
I can see the Buddha Fruit citrine comparison-it’s soft, sweet, vaguely citrusy, but not totally there. The passionfruit is a lot more dominant in steep 3-4 gong fu, and as it cools western.
I think that if I hadn’t have ShuiXian before, I think I might have mistaken this for a high end gaoshan. Again, not a bad thing at all-it’s more of a compliment piled on top of a compliment, but I personally got a deeper appreciation for it knowing what it is. I’ve had some varietals from localities that don’t always work for me, but this one worked well for me because it was flavor forward. I could taste a lot of similarities to the Zhangping pillows version of the Shui Xian in terms of the florals, especially the gardenia note I would get, but the heavy fruit notes, especially the peach, reminded me of the later steeps of the Wu Yi rock version. The light roast could be pushing forward the sweetness along with an oxidation of at least 25 or30% by my guess, but still.
Overall, I’m deeply impressed with this one. I would be on the border of splurging more on this one, but I recommend this for people who want to treat themselves for special occasion. My special occasion was the need for extravagant coping and sensory grounding, but I do think that this tea is approachable for new comers to oolong, but it’s price point is more for the experienced drinkers who are tea nerding.
It’s good for western or Gong Fu, but I personally prefer it gong fu…nevermind it was frickin awesome tumbler fuel with an extremely light amount of leaves. I’m probably going to add more to this in the future because I think it’s got more to offer.
Flavors: Floral, Fruity, Melon, Orchid, Passion Fruit, Peach, Savory, Sweet