22 Tasting Notes
I received this as a sample at first it seems kind of light heartedly not offering up too much the first couple steeps, definitely not a fruit bomb. More vegital. Definitely more of a savory tea, with a dried herb notes and some kind of dried floral notes? But drying in the mouth. Behind my lips and the sides of my tongue. All in all I think a very approachable Sheng. I see that I could get bitter or astringent if you over-steeped, but overall fairly easy to contend with. There’s some residual sweetness in the background but definitely take second fiddle to the floral, herbal, and earthy notes that it has. It sweetens as you brew through. Finishes dry with that cotton ball feeling in the mouth. Resinous at times.
I think overall a good tea definitely a daily drinker as a lighter, and approachable tea. Definitely for a sheng. It’s just easier to contend with, on your casual drinking. However, I think I’m having a problem getting past the drying from the tea. I feel like it overshadows a lot of subtle flavors that it has. Its light, and fairly light hearted, but it kind of gets ran over with this inevitable flavor and feel. The herby, peppery, earthy notes are welcome. I wish I would of got these custard notes, as some other reviews, but no joy..
I wouldn’t seek it out, but I wouldn’t turn it away. Just not a lot of bang for me from the tea ;p
Flavors: Beany, Black Pepper, Cut grass, Dandelion, Garden Peas, Green Beans, Herbaceous, Vegetable Broth, Vegetal
Steeps 1 -5
Brews light brown at first, but It has started off as a 7g chunk. Second steep it brewed a dark mahogany brown, with hints of red. It is brothy, reminds me of Soba or Ramen noodles. It has a certain starchiness to which adds to its mouthfeel. Which is substantial, but not heavy. Has the classic shou flavors, with a hint of latex, methanol. Third steep: Very dark, brown. Not transparent at all. Richer this time around, darker, carbony flavors, but not burnt. Much more minerally. Maybe some Chinese five spice flavors. Black pepper? Like burnt shishito peppers without the spice? good energy from the tea making itself present. The fourth steep, has much more roundness to it. Seems to have more of a savory aspect to it, like good soup broth, an umami if you will. Apparently a very Japanese tea haha. Its a very comforting experience. Some roasted notes here. Like drinking tea in a kitchen. The fifth steeping its is showing an ever slight give up color. A lot of energy, which i typically don’t associate with Shou’s. Usually a nightime tea for , or a casual drinker, this one would be great mid day, but I don’t for caffeine sensitive people might have to be careful. The tea seems to still offer up some solid steeps but has flattened out as far as complexity is concerned. Should go for at least 10+ steeps.
Overall, a good tea, and a surprising energy boost that I did not see coming.
Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Black Pepper, Broth, Char, Dark Bittersweet, Dark Wood, Eucalyptus, Grilled Food, Iodine, Medicinal, Menthol, Mineral, Pepper, Peppercorn, Spices, Umami, Wet Rocks, Wheat
Something I’ve noticed, is the cake is not pressed as tightly as some other offerings from CLT. So it seems to use larger chunks of tea, as it seems to be lighter, and fluffier than others. The cake I have is also short a few grams which is a bummer since the tea does not go as far. Beautiful cake! Really nice attention to wrapping, and artwork. Affordable too.
Steep 1 -4
Brews a golden yellow. Fairly Clear.
Soft, medium bitterness, cucumber skin, zucchini.
Salty. Slightly Floral. Subtle apricot sweetness in the background. Vanilla. Bitterness kicking in on second steep. Light acidity, apple like. green apple core flavors.
Bitterness and astringency is starting to mellowing. Pear, lychee sweetness, starts to come forward. Interesting apple, acidity, sweetness as well continues. Tea continues to brew strong with flash steeps and is very potent, and assertive. You can brew this fro sure into the double digits, if you can hang in there that long.
All in all, a solid sheng, however age will help this. I see it becoming a phenomenal tea in 5 years, or more. Its age brews away after a few steepings, and it is vibrant as ever. Very easy to oversteep I think. I don’t like to play with temps much, but it might be interesting to brew with cooler temps to see the results. I f you like big shengs, and bitterness, this is a winner for sure. A big bold, tea, that should reap some great results with age. Not to mention an affordable sheng as well.
Flavors: Apple, Apple Skins, Astringent, Bitter Melon, Dandelion, Drying, Floral, Gardenias, Green, Salty, Vanilla, Zucchini
Smell- Not too much here, clean. Moss rock thing, and nori.
1st – 3rd Steeping This was a clean brewing , and a red brown, garnet liquor. Smooth. It had a malty nutty character which came as a surprise. Plenty of medicinal flavors though too, that balloon, latex glove thing.
4th-6th steepings: The tea has really opened up brewing a dark, opaque, chocolate liquor. Mineral, with a quite subdued earthy woody tones that you normally associate with a shou. Clean, malty smooth, chocolaty, mineral, a more wet rock character where the pile or, woody/earthy would live. A decent body, but no super thick. Finishes with some medium sweetness, and almost no bitterness. The latex/rubber balloons taste rolled off somewhere in here…
This was a nice surprise, it had a nice mellow character, and not overly earthy, and woody. It had a more of a black tea character, with malty-ness, and chocolate to it which I totally did not expect.
I’m not sure if I stressed the mineral character of the tea enough, its very chocolate, and sweet, smooth but the mineral things is very interesting for me in this one.
In the early steeps, it definitely had some medicinal tastes to it. This dissipated, and rounds out with sweetness quite nicely. I love Jingmai teas!
Flavors: Almond, Cacao, Chocolate, Creamy, Malt, Medicinal, Mineral, Moss, Round , Smooth, Umami, Wet Rocks
Dry leaf – Smells like a wet forest floor. Mushroom, but a refined earthiness like shiitake mushroom. This 1st steep is very clean, rounded, soft, and mellow.
1st Steep – Wet leaves smell like a very light shou puerh, but there’s something dusty about it something that reminds me antique store or an old book.
Second/ 3rd steeping – Pours a very brown liquor. There’s a sweetness almost a tobacco sweetness, something I associate with cigars but without the smokiness. A vegetable, almost carrot like sweetness. The taste is very rounded and soft and elegant. A flash of some medicinal flavors in the palate. Hint of salt. A clean finish, even in the body. Balanced, elegant, and delicate.
4th steeping – lighter in color, just barely. Everything, taken down a notch. A longer finish, some aloe, black peppercorn, and menthol vapors. The finish is medicinal but in the most non-aggressive way. I’ll steep for a little longer next time. Lighter body as well. Liquor is clear.
The 5th steeping -lighter in color again even with a 5 second longer steeping. I’ll steep for 30 seconds next to see. The tea is definitely mellowed out a lot as far as the earthiness goes. It’s drinking like nice black tea. a bit of malty sweetness.
In conclusion, the subsequent infusion went much like the 5th. It drank smooth and light, even with the longer steep time, it did not get aggressive.
This was a great session. It drank like wisdom. A very calming and centering experience. I did not get a ton of energy, as much as an overall boost in well-being. A warming and comforting tea. You can not go wrong with this one.
Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Black Pepper, Carrot, Eucalyptus, Forest Floor, Iodine, Malt, Medicinal, Menthol, Mushrooms, Musty, Peppercorn, Round , Salt, Smooth, Tobacco
I received this as a sample, and I was intrigued because the MEGA brick is a pretty good value. Glen, and Lamu, are always so generous with to include a little surprise in all most of my orders. It is always about the little things, right?
Dry leaf – Pretty standard shou stuff here, not pungent or anything smells clean, not real funk, or fishy-ness. Standard wet leaves and forest floor, woody earthyness.
I rinsed twice, and sampled the 2nd rinse, out of curiosity. It was still a little weaker than I expected, but it had a certain brightness to it that was surprising , just elevated enough to keep things interesting, and not all flavors heading down the the dark earthy abyss.
Wet leaf – There is a lot here actually, why I’m falling in love with these teas. Forestry, earthy scents, with leather, and what I can only describe as perfume, like a peppery men’s cologne, its a hard scent to describe. Melon rind, and black pepper? All dominated by the standard shou – ness.
2nd-3rd steep – Wow, the leaf really opened up on the 2nd steep! poured a dark , dark garnet brown. Think Chimay Grande Reserve, for you fellow beer nerds. The body was lighter than expected, and it still had just a little brightness, to keep the palate from being sunk. However, not a flavor you’d normally call bright, but it is all relative. It drinks, soft, smooth, and mellow. Earthy, woodys, moss, and wet wood. I get a cooked / burnt, barbecue sauce scent, and leather in the background. semi-sweet, and mineral finish. If you have ever licked a salt block, when you were younger(the red ones) like that but not salty.
4th-5th steeping – The flavor really mellowed out here…just smooth tea, and maybe sweeter, but not sure if the earthy notes had died off a little, and made some room for the sweetness to come through more. It did however, give up the ghost a little here. Your first 4 steepings are where it shines, the tea definitely gets more focused, and less nuanced from here on out.
In conclusion, Overall it was a good tea session. It was a good shou, but about what I expected, given its price point. However, it would make a great daily drinker, which I think is more for what it is intended for. A solid shou, a good entry shou I think, and daily drinker fo’ shou!
Flavors: Decayed wood, Earth, Forest Floor, Iodine, Leather, Melon, Mineral, Mushrooms, Musty, Peppercorn, Perfume, petrichor, Smooth, Wet Moss, Wood
This is forage from my grandmas pantry. She got as a gift. I’m finding it hard to dig up any information, about the tea. I’ve included as much as I could decipher. I fear it to be a low quality tea, mass produced and labeled. As the terms used to describe it seem to be quite generic. I believe it to be a White tea, of some description.
The leaf material looks surprisingly good for loose leaf tea. I was intrigued. Given that the person who gifts tea to us, usually has good taste.
It wasn’t great…
I could find little or no sweetness in the tea. I drank very vegital , and lacked a lot of flavors, I had to dig for these the first steeping was a little lacking. The second,and third steeps seemed to really open up, and taste what little the tea had to offer. Starting off with a kind of generic white tea profile, with some nuance and nodding a hat to green tea varieties. It then went into some medicinal, rice, and grainy flavors. Lots of Hay, and wet hay in the aroma. Green grass, and fresh cut grass, with taste of an oxidized green tea, drying to some degree. After this 4 or 5th steeping the tea became round and just more grainy, rice water tasting. Didn’t want to drink more of it. Had a nice spike of energy from the tea though.
Flavors: Bamboo, Corn Husk, Cut grass, Dry Grass, Dust, Floral, Grain, Grass, Green, Green Wood, Hay, Hot hay, Mineral, Plant Stems, Rice, Spinach
I really enjoy this tea. To me its very delicate, it again is a white tea, and acts the part as well. It also is a very forgiving brewer in my experience , giving consistent results time and time again. i like this one for a night tea, not super energizing , calming, and a good sipper. Very light in color, and in flavor, and mouth feel. It has a quality that makes you want to savor such a light tea, not drink it down, but that too is a very do-able thing. Light floral notes, and to me some woody notes in the background. This isn’t a mind blower by any means, just a good cup tea. You also can’t go wrong with the peeps at LRC. Awesome experience with all their teas, and teawares. There is a personal touch to everything they do.
Flavors: Bamboo, Cut grass, Dandelion, Dry Grass, Floral, Gardenias, Lavender, Medicinal, Orchid, Perfume, Violet, White Grapes, White Wine, Wood