This one was passed along to me by Kittenna a little while ago, and I decided a couple days ago to dig into it with a brand new grogged clay shiboridashi as a Gong Fu session. I was sort of loosely taking the advice of some Slack tea chat people about what type of tea might work in that type of clay, and based on that advice this seemed like a good starting point!
This was definitely one of those sessions where I didn’t really worry about being technical or precise; I just used the whole sample from Kittenna and went with infusion times/steeps that just sort of felt right. I also didn’t track the number of infusions, but I’d estimate about eight or nine? I went until there was no more defined flavour notes in the tea; so the leaf wasn’t 100% spent, but pretty close to it.
It was a really nice session overall; this was a really sweet and flavourful tea right off the bat. First infusions were definitely a little more woody and malty, but then they started to give way to this beautiful array of sweet/jammy fruit notes. Lots of initial red fruit elements, like currants and berries, but most delicious to me was this orange note that really lingered on the tip of my tongue – like a mix of caramelized orange, sweet marmalade, and fresh orange juice! Light notes of honey also.
Just a really pleasant session; the tea felt so well rounded and balanced while maintaining that great sweetness! I’m going to experiment with other things in this shibo, but I think this was a great first selection – I’ll definitely be trying other Taiwanese blacks in it to see if that’s something that consistently brews well!
Thanks again for the share, Kittenna!