5g / 90ml Hongni “Fang Xia” from Essence of tea
camphor, peat, sweet hay
baked pears, ash, smoke, medicinal herbs. The aroma is sweet and pleasant, with nothing offensive. as the leaves cool down I get a delicious acidic fermented red fruits aroma.
1) 30 sec steeping
the liquor colour is dark red, medium thick, very sweet and round. I get some florals, complex sugars, some spiciness, a medicinal feeling. As they cool down I get a strawberry jam aroma from the leaves.
The Qi hits almost instantly, as my heartbeat goes louder and some type of pressure is building in my scalp.
the aroma gets a more “aged” element (I think of the colour Purple), while the soup stays similar to steep one but a bit more dry and pungent. Huigan is present but not so intense, with a tingling feeling at the top of the throat.
My mental activity is slowing down, my head feels heavy. I feel some kind of uplifting energy/nervousness.
So far the most delicious steep. Sweetness and astringency are well integrated, giving a sense of fullness and satisfaction as it spreads across the mouth. The soup carries various layers of flavours already described in the previous steeps, plus a more accentuated cooling element.
Dryness and pungency are bulding up, together with that cooling element that goes between camphor and menthol. The aroma gets more herbal with spices like anice and other stuff I can’t name.
5) – one minute steeping
Aroma gets more herbal and almost alcoholic.
soup is smoother, with less substance. Time to push the steeping time.
6) – two minutes steeping
the soup is pleasant and smooth, with a much thinner body.
7) – five minutes steeping
Actually the tea is still kicking, with more sugarcane and cherry sweetness.
8) – ten minutes steeping
More simple but still rich and satisfying.
This tea is famous for having a strong energy. I felt it for sure, but I wouldn’t say it’s so different from many other puerh I tried. I’m a beginner, so I may be not sensitive to subtle differences, but I wasn’t blown away by the Qi. I feel something in between alertness and sluggishness.
Apart from that, the tea is delicious. Very friendly, durable and elegant in his own way, without storage notes. Just… the price is not so friendly.