This session was an experiment to see if I could taste a difference in tea brewed in a yixing teapot vs a fine silver teapot. I went with a ratio of 1g/20mL as I needed the tea to not be overpowering, particularly in the earl-middle steeps, if I was going to pick up nuiances in taste. Grrrr! Just realized at the 3 steeping that my kettle was set to 195 degrees not 208. Increasing temp at steep 4.
Fine Silver 11g in 220mL
1/5s: Pot: 104oF Brew: 138oF at first slip. Super clean. Only the tiniest hint of astringency. No bitterness.
2/5s: Pot: 103.7oF Brew: 144oF. Pleasant astringency. Not quite metalic, there is a sort of sharp note in there. Bit of bitterness at back of the throat.
3/7s: Pot: 101.8oF Brew: 138oF. Not sure if it’s the taste of silver or the truth of this tea, but there is this sharp sort of tinny background note. It’s not huge, but there if you’re really looking for details in taste. Huigan is now present and in a big way with the light astringency that I so love in this tea that melts into sweetness. Plenty of body in this cup. Tiny bit of a bitter note as the huigan settles and fades.
4/9s: Pot: 102oF Brew: 150.4oF. Punchy. Good astringency and sweetness in the mouth and at the back of the throat. Has nice bite/body. The sharp note in the earlier steeps is completely gone. Damn good tea! No bitterness at all. Amazing, amazing huigan. Love how the astringency melts this way. Nice crisp, dry sort of finish that has long lingering sweetness thanks to that.
5/9s: Pot: 125 (100)oF Brew: 143oF. Tiny touch of bitterness at the tip of the tongue. Fades quickly. That buttery effect is showing up in this steep. Sweet astringency is still spectactular. Huigan is fucking spectacular in this cup.
Yixing 10g in 200mL
1/5s: Pot:145.5 oF Brew: 145.7oF at first sip. Ok that was kind of surprising! Notably smoother and a bit buttery. More huigan, neither bitterness nor astringency present.
2/5s: Pot: 155.1oF Brew: 145.4oF Pleasant astringency. No sharp note. Again, huigan present here. Buttery feel less, but still present.
3/7s: Pot: 142oF Brew: 133.3oF Buttery, sweet. Astringency still very soft as is the huigan. No bitterness.
4/9s: Pot: 158.1oF Brew: 139.4oF. The butter effect just turned up nicely. Much more body now. Great huigan. Still no sign of bitterness. The astringency is still very light leading so a soft (not crisp/dry) finish. The sweetness doesn’t linger as long on the tongue or at the back of the throat. Getting a bit of a vegetal note. This tea is usually just honey with a touch of grass. Interestingly, the tinny note I kept mentioning in the silver teapot is showing up a tiny bit here now, lol. Truth of the tea.
5/9s: Pot: 158.7oF Brew: 145.9oF. Finally getting that nice sweet astringency. Huiguan is stronger now, but still comparatively soft. Very clean. Lovely, lovely steeping.
So, the first thing of note to me is how much heat Yixing leaks to the outside vs silver. In that last steep on the silver I think I got a less reflective spot, but it outside temp of the pot is still lower. I expected that silver would conduct heat much better and thus leak more heat to the outside. Again this could be a matter of the surface being a bit reflective.
The other big point of note is how differently the pots perform in those early steeps. The first steep in the Yixing pot was miles apart from the silver. Shockingly so. Very happy I went this tea. Hopefully I can sleep after drinking about 2L of tea, LOL!