I’ve been promising a number of blind taste tests to myself, recently, and I finally went ahead and did one today! I had around 3g of this oolong left, and I still have a number of packets of the “gift tea” DHP that I was given in late 2014. So, I thought they’d make an excellent pair for comparison!
I used my two Gaiwans (Yixing Dragon from Butiki (~100ml) and my Jingdezhen one from Verdant(~120ml)). I prepared everything in an identical way (pre-heated cups, fairness pitcher and gaiwans), added the teas blindly (long story and hard to explain, but I managed XD), let them heat in the hot Gaiwan and then rinsed them both for ~3 seconds). I took notes on the fragrances and appearances of the dry leaf, and then went ahead with the tasting!
So, I did three steeps in all this morning (and I’ll do more later on): 5", 10", and 15".
I was really surprised by just how different this tea was to the one from Verdant :O For one, the dry leaves were much more intensely scented – a really strong, dried-lime like smell, with hints of roasty/blackened food. After the hot gaiwan/rinse treatment, it was much the same – intense, but almost refreshing!
The drink itself, particularly when compared against the astringent, light-bodied Verdant offering, was really smooth and full-bodied. It’s like, for the coffee fans on this site, the difference between Sumatran and Central/Latin American coffees – this one was definitely closer to the Sumatran varieties! It had such a thick, creamy mouthfeel that really coated the inside of your mouth.
The way I ran this “comparison” was to brew one and then, whilst it was cooling in the pitcher, brew the other. Then, whilst the second cooled, drink the first. Then drink the second.
This one turned out to be in my Yixing Gaiwan and was one I tasted second, after the first infusions (I hope this still makes sense). So, after the refreshing, almost tangy Verdant DHP, I took a sip of this and it was so odd – it was like it just wiped out any traces of the other tea! It felt like it immediately coated my palette with it’s thick texture, and almost dull, heavy flavour in comparison. I was so shocked that the difference would be so marked, especially given how zingy and citrussy this one smelled.
Don’t get me wrong, though – this tea was plenty tasty. It carried those blackened, charred, roasted lime flavours that, as the infusions progressed, became slightly sweeter and even creamier. In the final steep, a chocolatey, roasted-nut flavour came through (kinda like dark chocolate coated roasted peanuts).
I’ll carry on drinking both teas later, but I really was amazed by how different these two teas were :O
Flavors: Char, Dark Chocolate, Lime, Roasted