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.
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.
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 …