While I let my Bitterleaf 2020 dragon balls chill just a while longer, I decided to dig into this one. Mine is from the non-smoky batch. I must say that the pressed long straws are quite attractive and will help brighten up a tea session.
I used a 130ml gaiwan with a 1g/15ml ratio, steeping times similar to how I brew most sheng. For the first one or two infusions the aroma I got off the wet leaf was akin to that of cooked vegetables like zucchini and eggplant, but after that transformed to an uncanny smell of standing next to a cotton candy stand with that hot, burnt sugar smell. That’s pretty rad.
This tea is very sweet, as one might expect from Jinggu. Immediate upfront sweetness with plenty of flavor. This tea is honestly just straight up liquified cotton candy. Sugarcane is the best way to describe the sweetness and there is even a barely noticeable slight toasted note to this tea as well. Bitterness and astringency are vanishingly low as far as I can tell. The body is really solid and taste very pure and clean.
Overall Lucky Draw is an extremely approachable and very good tea for the price. It’s a great daily drinker and very forgiving to brew, likely making it well suited for brewing grandpa style or iced. I like it a lot and so does my mother who now wants a tin after hearing how affordable it is. I’m actually curious enough myself to order a tin of the smoky variant for comparison.
The tea’s straightforward nature can also be one of its biggest caveats for some. While very pleasant and easygoing, the tea doesn’t have much in terms of complexity or depth to it. The flavor does change gradually over the infusions, but not to a degree that would make Lucky Draw a particularly engaging or rewarding tea to session. The finish is also fairly short, with the aftertaste not lasting particularly long. Don’t expect a qi bomb either and while the leaves themselves have nice aroma to them, in the mouth I didn’t find this Jinggu to be the most aromatic sheng.
As long as you know that you’re looking for something easygoing and straightforward, none of the shortcomings I just mentioned matter. Lucky Draw is a tea that’s very difficult to genuinely dislike and one that will be in regular rotation for me this summer.
Flavors: Cotton Candy, Sweet, Toasted