82
drank Fo Shou Wuyi Oolong by Verdant Tea
543 tasting notes

Yancha, my love, it’s been too long… Over a month without your comforting embrace.

I decided to branch further out with my favorite style of tea by purchasing a few handfuls of Wuyi oolong samples from Verdant. First ever Fo Shou; I also have the Reserve Fo Shou in line.

I think I’m going to dedicate my new teapot to yancha instead of high mountain oolong. I would’ve loved to try my typical heavy leafing for yancha but all I had was this sample.

Spring 2017 harvest. 5g, 100ml, 205-212F. 10s rinse followed by 9 steeps at 10s/15/20/25/30/40/55/1m15/2m

The dry leaf smelled only of roast and cocoa powder with the roast dominating. Warmed and rinsed leaf smelled like rich dark chocolate. The cocoa/chocolate notes didn’t pass through, though. Early on, I could smell a faint incense and brown sugar in the clear orange-brown liquor. I was left with a tea that stayed fairly light in taste. The roast did have a small presence in the second steep, but I otherwise couldn’t pick out anything discernible besides the mineral, which gave an active mouthfeel. The tea offered a clear aftertaste of passionfruit, later moving into a very light grilled pineapple with brown sugar. Around the seventh steep, the tea began fading with some building light astringency. The spent leaf showed a high level of roasting and smelled of pipe tobacco with only a few large leaves. Warming, calm energy that mixed well with a stick of incense.

Overall, there was some flavor missing for my preferences but it was an easy-drinker with a nice, fruity aftertaste. This tea could be a daily drinker if you have $ and is a good introduction for those looking to try Wuyi oolong.

Preparation
5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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Always up for a trade. I keep an updated cupboard. Check it out. Don’t be shy — message me if you want to try something! I send international :)

Most enjoyment:

Wuyi and Taiwanese oolong, sheng puerh, Yunnan and Wuyi blacks, GABA oolong. I also appreciate Japanese, Vietnamese, Thai, Darjeeling and Nepali teas, bagged tea and herbal teas/tisanes.

I take my teas without milks or sweeteners except sometimes chai and the rare London Fog, matcha latte and golden milk.

I’ll try anything once because it helps me learn. Not opposed to well placed herbs, flowers, fruity bits and flavorings, just nothing cloying. And no added sugars, sweeteners, candy or chocolate.

I abandoned both my preference reference and the recording of detailed steeping parameters in January 2020, favoring a focus on qualitative descriptions. At this point, I am still comfortable toggling the “Not/Recommended” button.

Preference reference:

100-90: A tea I can lose myself into. Something about it makes me slow down and appreciate not only the tea but all of life or a moment in time. If it’s a bagged or herbal tea, it’s of standout quality in comparison to similar items.
89-80: Fits my profile well enough to buy again. Some could be daily drinker teas.
79-70: Not a preferred tea. I might buy more or try a different harvest. Would gladly have a cup if offered.
69-60: Not necessarily a bad tea but one that I won’t buy again. Would have a cup if offered.
59-1: Lacking several elements, strangely clunky, possess off flavors/aroma/texture or something about it makes me not want to finish.
Unrated: Haven’t made up my mind or some other reason. If it’s puerh, I likely think it needs more age.

Location

Sonoma County, California, USA

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