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Be sure to read Cinoi’s tasting note on this one – it has some great details and I agree with a lot of it! She also has had other Yunans, and this is my first. I also want to echo that these tins are packed full – I heeded Cinoi’s warning the first time I opened the tins and was grateful. I sorta forgot about it this morning and had some spillage. D’oh! I also love the packaging, the Select deal, and the good service. I’m already getting a sense of loyalty toward LeafSpa.

Both dry and steeped there’s a black tea smell, but it’s different than others I’ve smelled. It’s more subtle and…I just don’t know. Super-subtle maltiness. And it took me reading the note to understand this other taste was pepper (and I don’t think it’s power of suggestion on this one). I just haven’t had many dishes with good pepper in my life so it wasn’t on my mind. This truly is one of the more complex black teas that I’ve had.

Second steep I had the water at 200 and added a minute. I think 200 shall be my set temp on this one. The first steep was supposed to be 195, but I’m still figuring out my newfangled kettle, so it was closer to 191. There’s still pepper, but the complexity just went to a new level for me. This is getting beyond my descriptive powers. It’s like a very shy carmelized sugar came along and keeps peeking out from behind a curtain of peppery black tea.

I never would have tried this tea without the amazingly generous Steepster Select deal – so thank you to all who made that possible! I still cringe at the price a bit, but after having experienced this tea I am willing to pay full amount. There wasn’t a teagasm with this one, but I think I was so lost in trying to peg down the tastes. It was more like a courtship that lead to love. More than NE.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 3 min, 0 sec
S

Aww…given all the Samovar “drama” about packaging, LeapSpa sounds like a dream. I’ll have to order from them some time.

Lori

Hmm..I never had any trouble w/Samovar…

Rabs- I loved this tea as well but I am curious about sampling other higher quality yunnans…

Rabs

Shanti – I’ve truly never seen fuller tins :)

Lori – I’m thinking of this as a “gateway yunnan” I’ll definitely try more yunnans to compare, but this was a really great introduction. If nothing else stands out by the time I finish this tin, then I’ll definitely order more. I’ll also be curious to see what you find. :)

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Comments

S

Aww…given all the Samovar “drama” about packaging, LeapSpa sounds like a dream. I’ll have to order from them some time.

Lori

Hmm..I never had any trouble w/Samovar…

Rabs- I loved this tea as well but I am curious about sampling other higher quality yunnans…

Rabs

Shanti – I’ve truly never seen fuller tins :)

Lori – I’m thinking of this as a “gateway yunnan” I’ll definitely try more yunnans to compare, but this was a really great introduction. If nothing else stands out by the time I finish this tin, then I’ll definitely order more. I’ll also be curious to see what you find. :)

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Bio

Proud all-around nerd, crafter, and brand-new Assistant Library Director. Give me an engrossing book and a wonderful cup of tea and I’m in heaven.

After being a barista for almost a decade it wasn’t until 2010 that I discovered loose leaf tea. Now I’m hooked.

How I use Steepster has been evolving since I joined. Yes, I use it for my personal “to buy or not to buy” info, but I’m enough of a goofball that I hope it can amuse others more often than not.

I’ve also started to become anal about my tea (times and temps). That’s surprised me. I finally realized that I should respect the leaves like I used to respect the beans. I also take my tea plain unless otherwise noted.

There’s really nothing remarkable or noteworthy of how I rate teas. I do take it a tiny further step to help clarify the muddled middle grounds for myself. TG is a definite repurchase. Anything below that is less and less likely.

TG=Teagasm
NE=Nice Enough
M=Meh
GA=Gods-Awful

Location

Midwest, USA

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