I am back to review this tea for a second time, after initially disliking it and giving it a meager 15 rating. I learned some things about Darjeeling tea which I wish I’d have known the first time around and now that I’ve learned how to brew it properly, this has bumped my rating up to around a 55. That’s probably still a meager score to some, but I try to use the full range of the scale in my reviews, so that to me is fairly neutral, erring a bit on the higher side. In other words… it was enjoyable to drink, but I wouldn’t buy more of it.

But I do want to stress that it WAS enjoyable to drink. Brew this tea around 194F/90C and you are in for a treat! The flavor is rich and warm. There is an apricot-like taste up front, especially in the second steeping. It is backed by some darker bittersweet tones underneath. I brewed this tea many ways trying to find a good combination, and I can say that brewing it at any temperature above 194 made it have a very dry finish and a good deal of astringency. At 194 these are for the most part not present, though still there a bit.

This is a good tea if you treat it right! Don’t scorch it! Really, try it at a lower temp than the typical “black tea gets boiling water” and you’ll be pleasantly surprised!

Flavors: Apricot, Dark Bittersweet

195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

So true: 212F is a big mistake for darjeelings…

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So true: 212F is a big mistake for darjeelings…

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I’m a dedicated practitioner of Gongfu Cha and you can usually find me brewing my tea in a gaiwan. I tend to stick to straight teas and scented teas most often, though I dabble in tisanes and flavored blends sometimes. I use a Tokoname-ware kyusu for Japanese green teas and a chawan for matcha. I also have a small unglazed kyusu that I use for roasty teas like houjicha and genmaicha. I have a yixing pot seasoned with Yunnan red tea.

My favorite teas are Kenyan Silver Needle, Gui Fei, Da Hong Pao, Shan Lin Xi, WYMM Tea’s Mangnuo “Cane Tea”, Obubu Tea’s Sencha of the Autumn Moon, and Shang Tea’s Special Reserve Green.

To me, tea offers a time of peace and reflection in solitude, or sharing and enjoyment with friends. It has become a huge part of my life lately. I hold monthly tea gatherings at my home and run a Facebook page about tea called Lion Style Gongfu Tea: http://tinyurl.com/teawithlion

Aside from tea, I’m a creative person. I love to cook, create music, write fiction, draw, decorate, and do just about anything creative I can get my paws on. I also enjoy creating food and drink recipes.

I am really interested in Asian cultures in all aspects. I really love Japanese animation and video games as well.

I’m a friend to animals of all kinds. I couldn’t live in a world without animals. Conserving and respecting them is very important to me. I’m a lion at heart. :3

But I am mostly here on Steepster to talk tea! Let’s enjoy the world of tea together!

My Tea Ratings:
0 = Unpalatable, Awful
25 = Unenjoyable or harsh
50 = Average, I’m indifferent
75 = Enjoyable
100 = Incredible


Kansas City, USA



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