I didn’t get around to trying the very generous samples from China Cha Dao for a while after receiving them for a variety of reasons, including being overwhelmed with tea and going to the cottage a lot to enjoy the amazing fall weather and eat a lot of pumpkin baked goods. I’m feeling back in form now and started with this one.

It’s a really nice surprise. I was intimidated as I am not always fond of dark Oolongs. I’m not sure why, but the roastiness often doesn’t sit right with my stomach and my taste buds. This one smelled very dark and roasty dry. Sweet and honeyed, but dark. I thought of tar, actually. I boldly proceeded, though. Also, the leaves are gorgeous. So long and twisted.

I’ve enjoyed four infusions and counting of this in my gaiwan at around 180 degrees but for no measured steeping time. I think it’s increased slightly each infusion. It turns out to be light compared to what I was expecting. Sweet and toasty, I’m thinking roasted barley. Really nice.

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