tl;dr: excellent tea that’s already aging well. sweet scents give way to delicious “dirt, but in a good way”, with subtle undercurrants of sweet, creaminess throughout. Don’t oversteep this one, the fun is in the subtle-teas!
Dry leaf smell: lots of fun. I swear I spent 10min trying to place the smell with my partner and got nowhere. but very pleasant.
5g, 75ml porcelain gaiwan.
98C, 5s rinse: clear orange color. delightful creamy, sweet, milky smell. I’m excited!
98C, 15s: Nice amber color. More ripe smells and sweetness is gone. Quite a bit of stemmy material floating at top. No exciting flavors, but will probably take many steepings to open up since I didn’t really break up the clumps. Some mild creaminess. Light but full mouthfeel.
98C, flash: Chasing the sweeter aromas, found them again. Good ripe flavors of lush earth nicely compliment an increasing creaminess in a smooth, light but full mouthfeel. Really enjoying this. I hypothesize that this one shouldn’t be oversteeped less it lose all the subtleties. Not as full in mouth as last steeping though, so I’ll probably increase time a little.
98C, 5s: Rich red brown color. Mildest of fishy tastes.
98C, flash: cooling, camphor-y smells starting to dominate. leaves have totally opened up, and liquid is turning black basically on contact with the leaf. mild fishiness remains, but dominated now by good lush earth taste.
98C, 3s: Plummy smells begin. Very strong cha qi hits me like a truck in the head. Mellow/happy qi for me.
98C, flash: camphor smell slowly being overpowered by dry dirt smell. maybe I hallucinated plum. color becoming more light brown. Flavor nice an even, everything I like in a ripe all in one. Mild dry dirt, fishiness is long gone. Reminds me of later steepings of their 9012 cake after it aged 20 or so years. I see this tea aging very well.
98C, 10s: settled into dry dirt smell. dry dirt taste with the occasional hint of sweetness to keep things interesting.
98C, 3min: dead man’s steep. mmm. delicious. really brings out the sweetness and creaminess hiding under the nice dirt tastes. bottom of the steep has a little fishiness returning.
98C, inf: ultra dead man’s steep. it’s not dead yet. fishiness is gone again. I’m not sure whether it correlates with longer steeps or not now xD
Man, what a great experience, especially at the price point, 4.5/5. Extra 0.5 for price.
Flavors: Creamy, Dirt, Sweet