55 Tasting Notes
OK, so I did my Blissed OUT TGY Gongfu style in my new Yixing pot http://yunnansourcing.com/en/teapots/1016-hongmaziniclayqieduanyixingteapot250ml.html. Awesome duo, Rogers and Hammerstein, Torvill and Dean, Sherlock and Watson, well you get the picture. It was a moment, the sun was shining, a brisk fall breeze, and my cat was quiet! I had to use my broiler pan for the tray, but after I wrapped it in a tea towel all was cool. Heated the water in again, a new Hamilton Beach 1.7L kettle (Moriarty) to 190F. Used 6g to 250ml @ 30 sec 1ststp and the result were……..not as great as in my gaiwan. Then the next steeps were a little better. It did last forever though, 10 steeps and then a plunge after lunch in a porcelain teapot for the last brew. Need to take lessons I guess or figure out the right ratio. The tea was less fragrant but still had the great mouth feel and taste. Maybe my Yixing pot is too big or I needed more leaves, I don’t know. Seemed like they were trying to pop out of the top they expanded so much. Live and learn. ‘There is nothing like first-hand evidence.’
Received this mid week with the Xue Ju Shu Pu and the Imperial Mojiang Golden Bud both 2013. Two yixing pots also came with my order and pictures will follow once I’ve broken them in. I’ve never tried an autumn TGY before but I’ve read that they are not as delicate as the spring but then again neither am I.
Being midweek I could not wait till the weekend to enjoy this gongfu style, it had to be done at work. I used my Teavana Perfect TeaMaker. This device has served me well in the past, but I was hesitant to use it because it is usually red teas that I drink at work and I was afraid of lingering aromas and tastes. I cleaned it out as best as I could and hoped for the best.
The tea comes in individual 7gm foil packets, so into the TeaMaker it went and had a quick first rinse. I waited 2 minutes before I did my 1ststp to let the leave open a little.
1ststp was with 300ml @ 185 degrees for 30 seconds. The aroma when I opened the lid was amazing, the usual tea smells but this one has a pronounced boiled artichoke bloom. The taste is again just as described not as light as the spring tea but more structured with the gardenia and honeysuckle.
2ndstp was for 20 seconds and the mother load was delivered. Just as an artichoke gives you that faint sweetness as an after taste this tea too has the same effect on me. The florals are more pronounced and it borders on a near perfect tea (perfect I’m sure in my new yixing, oh I can’t wait).
3rd through 6thstp were same in comparison just a slight bit less nuanced. Adding 5 seconds to each steep.
7th through 10th, yes 10, were just as pleasing. I stopped there for lunch and I’m sure I could get even more out of these leaves.
The leaves themselves are still bright green all uniform in size unfurled in there splendor, not a ragged one in the bunch or any stem or broken pieces. Hats of to Yunnan Sourcing for this beautiful tea.
Drinkable but nothing spectacular. It has nice florals both before brewing and after, and interesting color but the second steep seemed a bit bitter. I was expecting better structure in the leaf and not so much stem and small bits. This will be the afternoon pick me up tea, not my first choice.
I thought it presumptuous of me to try this tea as my first oolong tasting since it is such a highly regarded tea. I have tried a few others but not having known what they were other than TGY. I knew instantly I liked TGY and that’s why I chose this one. I immensely respect the love for tea Haymen De Luz and his wife have and their generosity in bringing these teas to us from Aroma Tea Shop. Opened the bag to see beautiful rolled bright green leaves with the essence of clipped hedge, hay and a floral note. Used 130 ml gaiwan with glass bottled spring water for brewing. 1ststp was about how I remembered the other TGYs I’ve had. 2ndstp and forward the tea just blew my mind. HONEYSUCKLE in a tea cup, who knew. I am so angry that it took to me being 54 years old before I was given this pleasure. The scent of, as Hayden says, gardenias is spot on. I know this is early in my journey into quality teas but i feel a great affinity to this tea. Thank you again Aroma Tea.
Starting my tea journey with this brilliant tea. Used glass bottles spring water brought up to small bubbles in kettle then a quick wash of the tea in my 150 ml gaiwan. 1st steep 30 seconds as recommended. Calm, ethereal essence with a light grassy hayness with just a twinge of bitterness. 2ndstp 35 seconds and the tea took on a brighter dimension. 3rd4thstp 35 seconds and wow, #4 was the winner, the mouth-feel was just right not too heavy, but the sweetness of the tea exploded in the aftertaste and lingered for hours. I am impressed and as a beginner in the realm of artisan teas this was a great first experience.