287 Tasting Notes
I bought this a bit back when Canton had it on special and finally cracked the beeng yesterday. I’m not sure what I was expecting from it really, although I could not help but compare it to the 2010 Xing Hai that Canton sells for half the price. So, my thoughts?
The beeng smells lovely. I get that people will get a tobacco smell from it. For me, although there is something of pipe tobacco in it, the aroma of the beeng itself is redolent of the stableyard, just like the Xing Hai. It’s a lovely grassy horsey smell that reminds me of good times.
When I picked it apart, I got large leaves with bits of stalk. I mean some of those leaves were huge. Great stuff.
Yesterday I made it in my gaiwan: 3g of tea in a 140ml gaiwan, temp at 95 degrees as recommended on the website. With steeping times starting at 10 seconds and rapidly escalating, I found it to be on the insipid side (or delicate, if you wish to be kind). The flowery taste was there, but I got little in the way of aftertaste or depth of flavour. Shame that.
Today I opted for my dedicated sheng pot (170ml duan ni). I jammed 8g of leaf into the pot, and I mean jammed. Some of the leaves were too large to actually fit comfortably into the pot. I was going for destruction testing this time around, as far as I was concerned. I reckon I did the right thing too. The first steep was 20 seconds. It came out slightly flowery and a bit peaty. Not really fantastic, but pleasant. The second steep was also 20 seconds because I figured the first steep was a wake-up call and I was right. The taste came in a lot stronger. The peatiness and smokiness were emphasised but without killing the floral flavours. It was sweet and only just the right side of bitter. There was an aftertaste that really came into its own on the exhale, at which point my tastebuds started jumping around. Yes, that was about right for me. It reminded me of nothing so much as some of my favourite malt whiskies (without the alcohol, of course!). From that point on it was good all the way through to the sixth steeping, with some mushroom and mineral flavours developing along the way. I had to stop at that point else I shall not get to sleep tonight. Let’s see what it is like in the morning.
It seems to me that this tea likes it rough at the moment. It is robust enough to cope with some harsh treatment, and, for my taste, it needs a bit to bring out the best in it. I look forward to seeing how this tea ages, and will have to get a beeng or two more so that I can ensure a supply for some time to come.
I’ve been drinking this for the past few days but have been having trouble accessing Steepster, so I have not posted before now.
Following on from my previous note, this tea is marvellous. In the short time it has been sitting and airing in my cupboard, my skill at making it has improved and it has mellowed a bit, taking the sharper edge off the smokey flavour and I find that it loves my duan ni pot too. Most excellent. Better yet, it just makes me feel relaxed. The tea is happy and it makes me happy. What more needs to be said?
I can’t believe that I have not written any tasting notes about this tea. It has been in my cupboard for ages and I drink it regularly. I really must get better at recording all my teas! Anyhoo, I put half a dozen pearls in my infuser mug, wait a bit and drink. Resteep, drink again, etc. I can get half a dozen mugs of good tea out of that lot. This is the tea I go to when I want something sweet and easy to make. The balance of jasmine flavour to tea is just right. It is smooth and velvety, and is just what I want when I want something that does not require me to pay very close attention to it. Is that a bad thing? I don’t think so. There is more there if you do pay close attention to the tea, but you can get plenty from it without that. This is a staple tea for my cupboard.
I returned to this tea on Saturday but have had no chance to post at all over the past few days. Anyway, I like it more now than I did before. It makes me feel all calm and happy. The smoky flavour is there and all the other notes that I recorded before, but now they are mellowing a little. My duan ni yixing teapot is perfect for this tea and really seems to like it, which also helps, and I really think I am learning to get the most from this one.
It’s all gone. :-( I have really enjoyed this tea as you will see from my rating of it and my notes about it, but I just finished it off. Perfect for a hot day here (well, hot by my standards); light, refreshing and tasty. I need to buy more of this, but I am torn by the range of teas I have not tried yet. Talk about being caught on the horns of a Dalai Lama!
My wife was given this tea for her birthday. Naturally, she wondered if it was really for her! We have not tasted Genmaicha before and we tried it for the first time today. It is a hearty tea with a very toasty taste and aroma to it. I cannot decide how much I like it, but suspect that it is a ‘mood’ tea: great when you are in the mood for it. I did not notice much green tea in the flavour, because it seemed to be swamped by the toasted rice flavour that dominated. I think I was expecting something more delicate. Well, never mind. This is another tea that has its place in our cupboard for when we are in the mood for it. I shall try it again and report back when I have more time to spend working out the flavours and seeing if there is as much behind the rice flavour as the blurb from the website claims.