Today, I had my second session with Lucky Puppy. It is a long time since the first one, but as soon as I started drinking it, memories of the old one started cropping up. This tea is quite simply special, I can’t think of any other one that comes close to its complexity. My notes will only scratch the surface of the range of experiences you can get from it. But this tea really has everything. It is also very tasty, and a great tea all round, not just by virtue of its depth and elusive nature.
The aroma is still quite green and spring-like with notes of wet earth, dandelion, wheat, cocoa, bread crust and cinnamon among others. Towards the end of the session, marine and roast beef aromas come to the fore.
The taste profile of early infusions is grassy, tart, and metallic with a quinine like bitterness that persists and a lasting huigan. It is a very strong, complex, and evolving taste, yet it remains well-balanced. There are flavours such as artichoke, cactus, tangerine, asparagus, citrus zest, nutmeg, and wood. The aftertaste is vegetal, tart, and sweet with a subtly floral character. There are notes of green beans, dry grass, char, and honey.
Later parts of the session sees more of a juicy and spicy profile with a nice umami and an enhancement of the woody and nutty aspects. New notes like pine, sandalwood, cloves, bell pepper, and green apple emerge. Aftertaste displays new flavours as well, the ones I picked up on include bok choy and custard. In late steeps, the bitterness returns again, but in slightly different form. There is also an interesting white wine vinegar like acidity.
The body of the liquor ranged from medium to full and the texture is actually also more dynamic than in vast majority of teas one encounters. It is very numbing and tickling initially, with a sort of burning acidic sensation at the back of my mouth and in the throat. Somewhere around the middle of the session, it becomes airy and fleeting and it rolls off the tongue very easily. Progressively, I get more dryness on the side of the mouth. Later on, the mouthfeel becomes very soft, mouth-watering, and bubbly. In the very late infusions, it is then mostly creamy.
Drinking Lucky Puppy puts me into a peaceful state and elevates my mood, but the cha qi is not particularly strong for a tea of this price point. It is heady and also seems to have a bit less than average amount of caffeine.