I didn’t actually steep the yunnan to pieces like I said I would, because there was still tons of kick in it after four 1 minute steeps. As much as in the first go, and frankly I was wanting to try something else out of Auggy’s parcel. So I decided that four large cups were pretty good going and sacrificed the leaves in order to make room for this one.
I have been curious about it since forever. Or rather since I saw the first mentions of a heavy caramel note if you steep it just so. Sadly by the time I discovered that A&D was indeed very available to me with reasonable shipping costs, Series 2 was long long gone. (And by the time I realised that chinese blacks were really rather difficult for me to dislike in general, as was S4. Woe.)
Anyway, due to the kindness of others, I’m now in possession of S2 samples, yay! Apart from getting to try them, it totally appeals to the obsessive-compulsive completionist in me.
The aroma isn’t overwhelming in intensity, really. The thing about yunnan is that while good tea, the aroma of it is usually very strong and it’s been stuck in my nostrils since the first sniff. Any tea I smell at the moment has spicy yunnan notes in it, and I don’t think this one really should have. At least not this much. Shall we just skip this step, then, and go straight to the flavour? I think that would be best.
Hmm. Turned out a little weakly this one. Once again completely ignoring recommended steep times because of the amount of leaf I customarily use, I shall have to try a little longer steep.
I’m getting a little smoke and some of the general default Keemun flavour, and a little bit of sweetness on the swallow. Good but nothing really convincing yet. I suspect this is because it is a bit on the weak side. We shall see what happens as it develops a bit in the cup.
Also I keep getting little yunnan pangs from it. Did I not rinse the pot out properly? With a little development it wouldn’t be a half bad blend, but it’s not really what I’m going for here. Oh dear me, will I have to have a pot dedicated only to yunnan? What a catastrophe! (What’s available from Roy Kirkham?)
I’m becoming more and more convinced that this cup has Yunnan contamination in it. It definitely has a lot of promise, and I strongly suspect I’ll be enjoying it a lot when I manage to get a working cup. But for now I’ll leave it unrated, give the pot a thorough clean and try again later.