97
drank Laoshan Black by Verdant Tea
64 tasting notes

This is another sample (Thanks Verdant Tea!) I drank long ago. It was definitely a fantastic experience. I really love the leaves of this one. The aroma is simple and delectable, with scents of dark chocolate and honey. The small, twisted leaves shining with this midnight-blue sheen when in the light is eye candy. When wet, they gave off an aroma that was literally chocolate. Not even “like” chocolate. This was a milk chocolate with almonds Hershey’s bar ground up and placed in my gaiwan. Mmmmm! At this point the artful twisting of the leaves is very apparent. The twists were so fine that the leaves looked like pieces of yarn. I’m amazed by the skill and care of the He family farmers.

The resulting liquor smelled like pure tea and cocoa, and a bit like a high roast dan cong. So far, sooo good! The appearance was a light caramel, butterscotch color, which gradually turned darker with increased tones of amber as the steeping progressed. My first sip tasted a bit metallic, but it was soon forgotten with the flood of heavenly flavors. It was like drinking thick and creamy hot cocoa with milk and a chocolate syrup drizzle, with a few marshmallows plopped in for good measure. Underneath, tones of pure tea and caramel wafted through the nasal cavity after a sip. The next steep was headier, and a bit coarser in the mouthfeel; it matched perfectly with the introduction of oak wood and a gentle sprinkling of spices. It took me back to my Boy Scout days during winter camp, sitting by an oak wood fire drinking hot chocolate or chai after a long, cold day, reveling in the warmth that crept back into my fingers.

The steeps kept coming and coming as the body became further balanced and the mouthfeel increased in spiciness. The liquor became more malty, producing something smooth and creamy. The hot cocoa flavors gradually transformed into something reminding me of crispy chocolate chips, like when you leave chocolate chip cookies in the oven for a bit too long. Very yummy.

Further steeps tasted more or less the same, eventually fading out and losing strength past 10 or so steeps (I kind of lost count and stopped taking notes and just tried submerge myself in the lovely aromas and flavors). I absolutely love the depth and complexity of this tea. It sticks with a theme throughout every steep, doesn’t disappoint, and excites every sense.

Preparation
Boiling

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

People who liked this

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Profile

Bio

I’m fanatic about all things tea-related. Lately, I’ve been fascinated with Wuyi yancha, aged Taiwanese oolongs, and sheng pu’ercha. Nearly all of my sessions as of late are performed gong fu, with pu’er tastings comprising probably eighty percent of them. My collection of pu’ercha is small, but growing steadily. Much of the specimens I drink daily are various samples, although I dig into a cake every so often.

I love trying new teas and I am always learning all I can about the world of tea. Hence, I spend a majority of the time I devote to tea either drinking, writing notes in my journal, or reading. But mostly drinking, as I think it should be. Since I have handwritten logs of everything I drink, I cannot usually find the extra time to log my notes here, and unfortunately my online log is underrepresented.

When drinking, I look for a tea that presents a unique experience, something that involves every sense and provides intrigue in every aspect throughout steeps. I search for teas with balanced complexity and something that makes me keep reaching for my cup. I yearn to find all the positives a tea possesses and every subtle nuance hiding among the leaves. I try to be detailed in my notes and deliver a more comprehensive view of the tea, paying attention to things other than simply flavors and qualitative aspects of aroma, such as the form of the liquor and its development in the mouth. Things like this are much easier to compare between teas, as I find them to be more consistent between sessions, and also make distinctions between a good and mediocre tea easier to make.

Teaware
Adagio UtiliTEA electric kettle.
For gong fu, a 100 mL porcelain gaiwan and a 100mL Yixing di cao qing xi shi pot dedicated to mostly young sheng pu’er.
I drink all green teas in small (maybe 450mL) glass tumblers in the traditional style, with off-boiling water.

Location

Fort Myers, Florida

Following These People