Old Tree Black Tea (2019)

Tea type
Black Tea
Ingredients
Black Tea Leaves
Flavors
Almond, Bread, Butter, Caramel, Cedar, Chocolate, Cinnamon, Cream, Earth, Grass, Green Wood, Honey, Lemon Zest, Malt, Mineral, Moss, Orange Zest, Peanut, Pear, Pine, Plum, Raisins, Red Apple, Smoke, Straw, Sugarcane, Apple, Apricot, Blackberry, Brown Sugar, Camphor, Candy, Creamy, Floral, Flowers, Fruity, Ginger, Leather, Lychee, Meat, Nutmeg, Nutty, Oak, Orange, Orchid, Peach, Pumpkin, Roasted Nuts, Rose, Spicy, Tangy, Umami, Wet Rocks
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Loose Leaf
Caffeine
Not available
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by eastkyteaguy
Average preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 g 3 oz / 94 ml

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2 Tasting Notes View all

  • “It’s after midnight, and I’m somehow still keeping the tea review train rolling. I have no clue when I finished my lone sample pouch of this tea. It was probably either late 2021 or very early this...” Read full tasting note
    90
  • “I wish I had more of this tea, like all the previous Old Tree Black offerings from Old Ways Tea. I had one bag, which I drank during the Steepster Freeze. Old notes, fairly illegible. Like the...” Read full tasting note

From Old Ways Tea

Smooth, with good mineral flavor. Fragrance is mellow, and can remind you of the lichen and mosses that grow on old trees.

This is black tea produced from older trees kept in a wild style. The trees are allowed to grow largely as they wish getting much bigger than normal. The trees are different in two distinct ways. First since they are older trees the roots have reached past the upper soil into the rocks below and can access a broader mineral content than young trees; providing additional flavor complexity. Secondly the wild style trees are denser which provides a micro-climate influencing the lichen, leaves, and shading of the tree.

This old tree black tea comes from the village of Masu (麻粟) high in the mountains above Tongmu village, in Wuyishan City, China. The farms are small and located at an elevation of 1250 meters. The soil is very rocky and the clear cold streams fast flowing. The trees are said to be roughly 60 years old; although with matters of age it can be hard to verify the claims. I am satisfied and happy to offer this tea for your enjoyment.

About Old Ways Tea View company

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2 Tasting Notes

90
1048 tasting notes

It’s after midnight, and I’m somehow still keeping the tea review train rolling. I have no clue when I finished my lone sample pouch of this tea. It was probably either late 2021 or very early this year. After being slightly disappointed by the 2018 Old Tree Black Tea from Old Ways Tea, I was not sure what to expect of the 2019 production. Well, it turned out that this was a noticeably better offering overall.

I prepared this tea gongfu style. After a 5 second rinse, I started my review session by steeping 5 grams of the loose tea leaves in 3 fluid ounces of 194 F water for 5 seconds. This infusion was followed by 20 additional infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 7 seconds, 9 seconds, 12 seconds, 16 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, 7 minutes, 10 minutes, 15 minutes, 20 minutes, and 30 minutes.

Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves emitted aromas of honey, grass, straw, malt, bread, cinnamon, pine, and cedar. After the rinse, I picked up on fresh aromas of roasted almond, roasted peanut, green wood (oak?), and butter. The first infusion then added a delicate creamy scent. In the mouth, the tea liquor presented notes of cream, grass, malt, bread, straw, butter, green wood, and roasted almond that were chased by hints of cinnamon, raisin, pine, honey, and sugarcane. The subsequent infusions primarily added aromas of minerals, smoke, raisin, and moss to the tea’s bouquet, though subtler scents of earth and chocolate also made themselves known. Stronger and more immediately detectable notes of cinnamon, raisin, pine, honey, and sugarcane emerged in the mouth alongside impressions of minerals, roasted peanut, red apple, orange zest, moss, earth, and lemon zest. Hints of caramel, pear, plum, smoke, cedar, and chocolate were present as well. Once the tea started to fade, the liquor began more heavily emphasizing notes of minerals, malt, bread, cream, pine, roasted almond, orange zest, green wood, and sugarcane that were chased by subtle hints of grass, straw, honey, lemon zest, cinnamon, earth, moss, raisin, butter, pear, and caramel.

A very complex and heavily textured black tea with tremendous longevity, this tea was both a challenge and a joy to sample. It retained some of the dryness of the 2018 production, but it offered better texture and depth, coming off as being somewhat more akin to either the 2016 or 2017 offerings. The Masu Old Tree Black Tea is clearly a must-try offering from Old Ways Tea in most years. It’s definitely a regular offering to check out if you are looking for a balanced Wuyi black tea with tons of complexity, depth, and texture.

Flavors: Almond, Bread, Butter, Caramel, Cedar, Chocolate, Cinnamon, Cream, Earth, Grass, Green Wood, Honey, Lemon Zest, Malt, Mineral, Moss, Orange Zest, Peanut, Pear, Pine, Plum, Raisins, Red Apple, Smoke, Straw, Sugarcane

Preparation
5 g 3 OZ / 88 ML

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1553 tasting notes

I wish I had more of this tea, like all the previous Old Tree Black offerings from Old Ways Tea. I had one bag, which I drank during the Steepster Freeze. Old notes, fairly illegible.

Like the other 3 years I’ve had (2016, 2017, 2018), this one had a great, complex strength in aroma and taste. It reminded me most of the 2018 harvest, and I think that’s because there was an umami quality present in this one that wasn’t there in the 2016 and 2017 harvests.

Main taste profile included pumpkin candy, wet rocks, sunflower seeds, rose-orchid-sunflower florals, almond, blackberry, antique wood, malt, bright leather and a tangy apricot-orange tone. Creamy finish with lychee, morphing into apple and peaches and cream. Long lasting floral aftertaste developed vapors of nutmeg that grew stronger. Ginger heat, camphor cool.

I can’t recommended the Old Tree Black teas enough if you’re willing to pay for a treat! These teas deserve attention and would be a fun learning experience for anybody wanting to develop their palate and understand complexity.

Flavors: Almond, Apple, Apricot, Blackberry, Brown Sugar, Camphor, Candy, Cream, Creamy, Floral, Flowers, Fruity, Ginger, Leather, Lychee, Meat, Nutmeg, Nutty, Oak, Orange, Orchid, Peach, Pumpkin, Roasted Nuts, Rose, Spicy, Tangy, Umami, Wet Rocks

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Martin Bednář

I don’t mind they are “old”, especially wwhen they aren’t that much. Great Steepster freeze is not that far away :)
I remember, when I did my fist steps with loose leaf, I have even talked to Old Ways Tea owner. I thought about ordering some, but shipping was too high for me back then.

ashmanra

I loved the Old Ways Teas I have tried.

gmathis

Your ability to chase down so many flavor sensations never fails to amaze me. I think I’ve just burnt my taste buds out permanently with my beefy black breakfast stuff ;)

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