77

A swap from Kawaii433. I think I still have few teas of yours mixed into my stash!

My brick was 9 grams so I split it in half and brewed it in my porcelain pot. Like other zhangping shuixian oolong, I opted for longer steeping times.

The dry leaves smell like I’ve buried my face in a narcissus bouquet studded with orchids. Lots of juicy green pear and a bit of malt. The warmed leaf was bright with honey, orange blossom and peas? The first steep brought out light toastiness in the wet leaf.

The first steep of 30 seconds at 190F left me thinking “Is this bad tea?” It had a nice orange blossom and sweetgrass aroma but there was an almost… you know that fresh mold smell? I could taste it. So I figured why not up the temperature and just roll with it — I see no mold in the other half of the brick. And maybe a higher temperature would thicken up the texture.

I went up to 205F with even longer steeping times and yeah, it was good. Orange blossom, dry grass, honey, lots of mineral tingling and salivation, slight baked bread. Honey aftertaste and a slight opening of the sinuses with something akin to spruce forest that had me breathing easily after a few more steeps. The body did become quite a bit thicker and a citrusy quality like mandarin zest presented. Bottom of the cup smell of honey and sweet almond. The aroma changed a bit into something soft like powdered sugar dusted flowers as the taste became even deeper with honey and ripe peach. A light gripping astringency in the throat was there early but otherwise the tea had no more else to show. Honey-sweet, floral, mineral, fruity and grassy with a medium-thick body.

Not going to rate it for now. I’ll try the remainder of the brick grandpa style with 205-212F water. I get the feeling this oolong might be well suited for that preparation.

[4.5g, 205F, 100mL porcelain pot, no rinse, longer gongfu steep times starting at 30s]

Book pairing: Intimacy: Trusting Oneself and the Other by Osho

Flavors: Almond, Baked Bread, Dry Grass, Floral, Fruity, Garden Peas, Honey, Malt, Mineral, Narcissus, Orange Blossom, Orange Zest, Orchid, Peach, Pear, Pine, Powdered sugar, Sweet, Sweet, warm grass, Toasted

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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:

I prefer straight loose-leaf and compressed tea, teabags for ease of use and herbal teas/tisanes. My favorite teas come from all over including China, Taiwan, Nepal, Darjeeling, Thailand, Vietnam, Japan and Georgia. The only one that doesn’t do much for me is Ceylon.

I abandoned my preference reference in early 2020, favoring a focus on qualitative description and because everybody uses a different rating scale. I’m 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.

Some things about me:

Endless curiosity and fascination have led me to wear many hats. Stubbornness and naivety have led me down dark paths. The restlessness isn’t improving with age but at least at 37, I’m finally aware of my nature. I have high physical energy and love being around people but am easily exhausted. My most recent caricature is that of an environmental engineering masters dropout working in retail electrical sales. An impatient woman with a knack for making stupid decisions, a lover of Jesus, science, art, beauty and language who happens to ride a motorcycle and bicycle, dabbles in sax, wields a chainsaw and drinks tea out of tiny pots. They call me “Trouble”.

Location

Sonoma County, California, USA

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