85
drank Anxi Rou Gui by Canton Tea Co
240 tasting notes

I really cannot decide about this one. The first cup always seems to have a little too much astringency, while the rest are easy-drinking enough, but I am not getting a huge wodge of character from it. I have tried it in my small glass teapot and in my yixing pot. Interestingly, my yixing pot seems to really like it and the flavour is improved, but I am still undecided. On the plus side, I absolutely loved the way the leaves unrolled in the glass pot. The visual aesthetic was perfect, but the rest of it … well, I need to work on that.

EDIT:
Further experimentation tells me that a lower brewing temperature and a slightly shorter steeping time may help. Somewhere down around 80-85 degrees and only brew it for two minutes. When I tried that, hints of apple and cinnamon came through, the astringency was not as pronounced and the whole experience was much more pleasant. As a result, I have increased my rating for this tea.

My next experiment will take the temperature in the opposite direction and the steeping time right down. I have noticed that one of the other tasting notes mentions a high temperature and a 30 second steeping time. It will be interesting to see what that does to the tea.

Final Edit:
I tried high temperature, short steeping time and it turned this one into a totally different tea. Not awful, but different. I liked it. Then I finally tried it by heating the water to just before the boil and steeping for a 1m30s. This works really well to make it a very drinkable tea. It’s not stunning, but it makes for a good everyday drink. There, I’m done experimenting. I wonder if the taste is significantly affected by my new celadon tea bowls? Maybe I am not done experimenting after all …

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 1 min, 30 sec
Spoonvonstup

Hm- I wonder if the tea likes a higher-consistant temp during brewing? That may explain why it was happier in the yixing than the glass (where the heat would dissapate most quickly). Don’t know how that would help astringency, though.

Roughage

That’s a good point about the consistent temperature. I plan to try it slightly cooler and slightly hotter to see how things go. I shall also have to try cutting the brew time on the first infusion, and I may well try it in my gaiwan to see how that compares. It’s all a bit of an adventure really! A bit like chemistry classes in school!! :)

Spoonvonstup

Fun! I’m definitely of the school of thought that each tea has it’ own ideal brewing procedure (though that itself can change over time and depending on what you want out of it). It’s always fun to play around with the tea to see what makes it happiest.

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Spoonvonstup

Hm- I wonder if the tea likes a higher-consistant temp during brewing? That may explain why it was happier in the yixing than the glass (where the heat would dissapate most quickly). Don’t know how that would help astringency, though.

Roughage

That’s a good point about the consistent temperature. I plan to try it slightly cooler and slightly hotter to see how things go. I shall also have to try cutting the brew time on the first infusion, and I may well try it in my gaiwan to see how that compares. It’s all a bit of an adventure really! A bit like chemistry classes in school!! :)

Spoonvonstup

Fun! I’m definitely of the school of thought that each tea has it’ own ideal brewing procedure (though that itself can change over time and depending on what you want out of it). It’s always fun to play around with the tea to see what makes it happiest.

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I am a historical consultant, Vikingologist and tea enthusiast! To be honest, I have always liked decent tea, but in 2011 I started working at learning what good tea really is. I continue to expand my horizons and discover new teas with the aid of my chums on Steepster, much to the chagrin of my wife, who despairs of my enthusiasm.

My favourite teas are Darjeelings, sheng puerhs and Anji Bai Cha. I return to these every time, after whatever flirtation with other teas I have been involved with.

I no longer rate the teas I drink because keeping ratings consistent proved to be rather hard work while not really giving me anything in return.

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