7 Tasting Notes
Hits all the right notes for a daily driver black tea (for me.) Malty, light scent of fresh tobacco, a rich, floral (in that way autumn leaves are floral, y’know?), and bright background. Complex on its own but plays a wonderful second fiddle to a pastry or snack. Wonderfully toasty at heavier ratios, though that dies off in the later steeps. Quite sweet with brown/raw sugar flavor, not the sweetest I’ve had but significant. Toes the line of too sweet for me (I prefer roastier/toastier -sweet to sugar-sweet).
Flavors: Brown Sugar, Floral, Malt, Toasty, Tobacco
This turned into my daily driver and I fell into an easy rhythm with it brewing it western style. 5.5g:300ml, 10-15s rinse, 2:00, 2:20, 2:50. It doesn’t get bitter or astringent, but steeping too long can make it too thick and undefined. You get really clear, sweet sugary notes with the first steep that evolve into more defined floral, malty, and fruity notes in the later steeps.
I’ve gone through it in a handful of months so I can’t say it’s really aged. It is a little more aggressive these days, but I think that’s due a higher ratio of broken leaves and dust as I reach the bottom of my bag.
Cold brews into a great, but a bit light, iced tea.
Flavors: Brown Sugar, Floral, Malt, Plums, Sweet Potatoes
Initial impressions. On opening the bag I was greeted with a funky, fruity smell like maybe a nectarine or plum that gave way to hay, spring/summer grass, and almost meatiness. The brew was intensely savory with a solid returning sweetness. Spinach, sweet grass, seaweed, and a ton of umami. Broccoli crowns that have been steamed until soft. Buttery mouthfeel. Even though the leaves don’t have much of an intense green going on like a gyokuro, I would suspect a relatively high theanine content based on the taste.
I found this tea to get too astringent too quickly brewed in a gaiwan, even after dropping the temp and time. However, it’s quite good brewed western, ~5g to ~330g water, 180’F, for 2 minutes. Brewing this way really tames the bitterness and astringency but keeps the brothy and crisp brew.
Flavors: Hay, Sweet, warm grass, Umami
Just received this tea so this is initial reactions.
Wow this tea is sweet, like turbinado and a touch of light brown sugar. Not too caramelly, a very clean sweetness. I would genuinely believe someone had sweetened this tea if I hadn’t brewed it myself. A little lighter and more floral than other dian hong; reminds me of oolongs on the more oxidized end. A touch peppery; sweet potato that comes and goes in middle steeps; just enough astringency to keep things interesting. Sweetness not as present in later steeps and opens up to more floral flavors. Lacks some of the nutty, peanut shell notes that give other dian hong some depth and I like, but holds its own, especially for the price. I bought this as a daily drinker and it fits that bill perfectly.
I think this tea will do well iced, cold brewed, and carbonated.
10s rinse; 10, 15, 20, 30, 45, 1min, 1min
Flavors: Brown Sugar, Malt, Pepper, Sweet Potatoes
A decent bargain (though i bought it during their 2 for 1.) I wasn’t sure what to expect with this tea as there’s no date on it (and it’s a cake) but it tastes really fresh. Somewhat earthy like sweet potatoes but mostly lower floral and stonefruits. It’s not overly floral like getting hit in the face with an orchid but there’s enough there to keep you going back for more. Light enough that it’s easy to drink many cups at a time but you still feel like you’re drinking tea. Very, very little astringency, just a bit in the back of the throat. Perfect darkness in my opinion. Very glad i bought as much of it as i did.
It’s a chilly, rainy day today and this tea is perfect.
Flavors: Apricot, Orchid, Stonefruits