Wu Yi Shan "Bai Ji Guan" Rock Oolong Tea * Spring 2016

Tea type
Oolong Tea
Ingredients
Oolong Tea Leaves
Flavors
Baked Bread, Citrusy, Floral, Lemon Zest, Mint, Sweet, warm grass, Almond, Apricot, Chestnut, Dandelion, Fruity, Grass, Honey, Lemon, Mineral, Mushrooms, Orange, Pear, Raisins
Sold in
Loose Leaf
Caffeine
Not available
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by eastkyteaguy
Average preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 45 sec 6 g 4 oz / 119 ml

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From Yunnan Sourcing US

Bai Ji Guan (aka White Cockscomb) is a classic Wu Yi varietal originating from the “Bat Cave” deep in the Wu Yi mountains. First recorded in the Ming Dynasty it was given this name because the tops of bushes have a bright yellow-green appearance that in strong sunlight is almost white in color.

Bai Ji Guan is lightly processed through shade withering and when brewed gives up a sweet mushroom and longan fruitiness that is very delightful. Cha Qi is noticeable but subtle and never overpowering.
This tea has been grown without the use of pesticides or chemical fertilizers.

May 2016 Harvest

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3 Tasting Notes

85
167 tasting notes

Exploring several Wu Yi oolongs this year. They have been a consistent favorite, so time to get to know them a little more. Might as well start with the Four Famous Bushes! I’ve sampled a few Da Hong Pao, and one Tie Luo Han. So, up next is Bai Ji Guan.

Overall, it was OK. When it was good, it was really good. Unfortunately, I only ever really got three good infusions. The subsequent infusions lost most of their interesting notes.

The flavor profile is sweet, floral, herbal, and savory. Very complex and nice while it lasted. The sweetness was fairly pronounced but was tempered by a wonderful savory note that brought the whole flavor into a delicious harmony.

There was also a really nice salty sweetness in the aftertaste, which I really like. Kind of liked salted cantaloupe.

All in all, it had a complex and fascinating flavor, but was fairly short-lived. I’m very glad to have tried it, as it was quite unique. Worth the experience.
*
Dry leaf: floral, pollen, dried parsley and dill, sweet and bitter fruit like kumquat. In preheated vessel – roasted corn and tomato vine.

Smell: light honey, honeysuckle, sweet floral, fresh parsley

Taste: yeast roll, honey butter, fresh parsley and cilantro, grape skin, orange flower, mineral. Light saltiness and fruit in aftertaste – salted cantaloupe, apricot, floral.

eastkyteaguy

One thing I would throw out there about Bai Ji Guan is that because it tends to be so mellow, you really have to dig when it comes to analyzing it. It can be a very deceptive tea in a lot of respects. One thing that helped me with this one was spacing out my infusions. Once I abandoned a regimented routine, I felt like I got much more out of it. I also found that playing around with the water temperature can work wonders. One wouldn’t expect it given the delicate nature of the cultivar and the light roast, but it’s a fairly durable, resilient tea. I know I had the same issue myself. I probably did at least five gongfu sessions with this tea (the rest were Western, which worked pretty well), and of the bunch, three produced only about 3-4 truly exceptional infusions while the other 2 were very nice sessions overall.

apefuzz

I agree. The tasting notes I took kept changing. Sometimes I loved the tea, other times I was unimpressed. The flavors were elusive as well, as you noted. I only had 25g, so I only had five sessions, ranging from porcelain gaiwans to clay, with varying leaf:water ratios. It was a different session every time. The best session was a small gaiwan packed with leaf, with very short infusions.

Anyway, definitely a sit-down-and-pay-attention sort of tea. It was worth the price of admission, for sure. A very challenging and engaging tea, sort of a workout for your palate, but I’m not sure I would purchase much of it regularly.

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78
128 tasting notes

- Baozhong qualities with a little more zesty, baked notes

Flavors: Baked Bread, Citrusy, Floral, Lemon Zest, Mint, Sweet, warm grass

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 45 sec 2 tsp 4 OZ / 120 ML

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90
853 tasting notes
I’ve been fascinated with the Bai Ji Guan cultivar for the better part of a year now. Part of that is due to the fact that it is comparatively rare and unheralded here in the U.S. Another is the way it looks. I find those bright chartreuse leaves absolutely lovely. I also adore this cultivar’s complexity. It is usually vegetal, floral, nutty, and fruity and rewards patient, measured drinking. Compared to the Bai Ji Guan from Verdant Tea that I tried several months ago, I found this one to be fruitier, more floral, and more mellow overall.

I prepared this tea gongfu style. After a quick rinse, I steeped 6 grams of loose tea leaves in 4 ounces of 195 F water for 5 seconds. This infusion was chased by 13 subsequent infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 7 seconds, 10 seconds, 15 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, and 3 minutes.

Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves emitted delicate aromas of hay, sweetgrass, roasted almond, watercress, minerals, and stone fruits. After the rinse, a floral quality reminiscent of a mixture of dandelion, chrysanthemum, and marigold emerged. I also thought I began to catch hints of burdock and mushroom. The first infusion produced a similar aroma, but I was now able to pick out a definite touch of burdock. In the mouth, I picked up on subtle mineral, burdock, watercress, roasted almond, hay, sweetgrass, and mushroom flavors underscored by hints of flowers and a touch of golden raisin. Subsequent infusions introduced more defined aromas and flavors of golden raisin, as well as longan, apricot, nectarine, lemon, mandarin orange, and Asian pear. I also caught fleeting impressions of roasted chestnut and spring honey. The later infusions were dominated by minerals, though touches of sweetgrass, hay, roasted nuts, mushroom, honey, pear, and lemon were still detectable in the background.

This was a very complex tea-it was hard for me to get a handle on at first because it was so mellow. The aroma and flavor components worked so well together that it was hard to separate them at times. Every time I began to get bogged down in the little details, however, the tea would always pull me back down to earth with its smooth body and sharply focused mineral texture. I may be overselling this one a bit due to my fascination with this particular cultivar, but I do not have much of a problem with giving it a high score. This tea has really grown on me and I expect it to continue to do so as I work toward finishing up the remaining amount.

Flavors: Almond, Apricot, Chestnut, Dandelion, Floral, Fruity, Grass, Honey, Lemon, Mineral, Mushrooms, Orange, Pear, Raisins

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 6 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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