This tea was packed in a small bamboo basket. I decided to brew the tea using two separate methods in one full review. The first method is without the bamboo wrapping, and the second is with the bamboo wrapping. It will be interesting to see the differences between the two.
As I opened the top bamboo basket, I was welcomed to a sweet fragrance. The short, dark tea leaves were mostly caked lightly together, however a few on the top were loose. The brewed leaves smelled sweet, chocolaty, and a bit woody. The leaves softened up quite a bit, and some revealed themselves to be a dark brown rather than black.
Without Bamboo Wrapping
The brew was a reddish brown, and completely clear; it smelled sweet and mossy. The flavor was sweet, floral, woody, and very smooth.
This steeping was sweeter than the first. There was an aftertaste similar to a nutty honey. It was lightly floral, and remained woody through the finish.
The color of this brew was much lighter than the first. The nuttiness had increased from previous brews. A sweet smoky flavor had also developed in the aftertaste.
With Bamboo Wrapping
The complexion was much the same as the brew without bamboo wrapping. The flavor difference was apparent immediately upon sipping. The tea was sweeter, smoky, woody, and just as smooth. The aftertaste was more noticeable, and tasted the same.
This steeping was sweeter than the first, paralleling the brew without wrapping. Though the separate methods result in similar qualities of flavor and aroma, they produce different combinations of each. The different combinations of flavor and aroma made this steeping of the bamboo wrapping-infused tea more full bodied and concrete than the other. It tasted woody, sweet, and a bit smoky, but also a bit grassy and nutty in the finish. This steeping had more character.
I noticed a bit of earthiness in this brew. Perhaps it was the mossy and woody qualities mixing together more. There was a definite nutty aftertaste which lasted quite long.
This tea was very smooth, woody, nutty, and sweet throughout both methods. I prefer to enjoy the tea with the wrapping.