Oh man, I have such terrible spring fever. I can barely sit still, I just want to go frolicking in the flowers and dance in rain of pollen. This happens to me every year, unless I am sick, since I am not I get to revel in the beauties of spring-time. Also the excellent surprise of my new Yixing arriving much sooner than I was expecting. I still have not decided which tea to season it for, I need to stare at it to get a good feel for it.
Today’s Teavivre tea is one of Fujian’s famous Gong Fu black teas, specifically Superfine Tan Yang Gong Fu Black Tea is considered to be the best. Grown in the Tanyang Village in Fu’an, Fujian, this delightfully fuzzy gold tea was plucked in March of 2013. The aroma is very fruity, strong notes of juicy plums with a side of roasted peanuts and a faint malt at the finish. I really want to make sure everyone knows this tea is very fruity, almost surprisingly so! It does not smell at all like a flavored tea, but like someone placed a plate of sliced plums right next to the leaves.
Once the leaves have been rinsed and steeped for their quick bath (a whopping five seconds!) the aroma pf the wet leaves is more predominantly roasted peanuts and malt with a finish of stewed plums. They have gone from fresh plums to cooked and rich plums. I am perfectly ok with that. The poured off liquid is surprisingly floral, a blend of sweet roses and honeysuckle with strong plums and peanuts. Very delicious smelling, I admit that I cannot wait to taste it.
The first thing I notice is the smooth mouthfeel, very smooth and a tiny bit fuzzy from the tricomes on the leaves. The initial steep is very mild, almost a bit too mild for my liking (it was only a five second steep, I guess I am not that refined yet) there was plum sweetness and roasted peanuts, but they seemed delicate preludes to the future.
For the second steep the aroma of the liquid is less floral and more stewed plums. It is very rich and sweet. Hello sweetness! The taste is much bolder than the previous steep, the roasted peanut is more prominent in the middle which fades to a sweet aftertaste.
The third steep’s aroma is very sweet still, but with the floral notes no longer present and a strong roasted nut presence. It starts out with very sweet juicy stewed plums and roasted peanuts, this fades to a slightly peppery finish and has a fruity aftertaste that lingers for a while. The tea still has a very smooth mouthfeel.
For the fourth steep’s aroma is still of stewed plums and roasted peanuts, but there is a peppery note and I notice it is not as sweet as the previous steep’s aromas. The taste is just as sweet as before, but instead of being just stewed plums there is also a rich honey taste. This fades to malt and sweet potatoes and finishes with a peppery aftertaste. I really feel like the tea really shined this steeping.
The fifth steep, I really have nothing to add, it was almost identical in aroma and taste to the fourth steep. I savored every drop. I did notice the malt taste was a little weaker and the honey a little stronger, but the amount was minuscule.
And with the sixth steep I call it quits, the tea is fading and I am tea drunk. The aroma is fruity and sweet, blending stewed plums and bit of honey. The taste is pretty much the same as the aroma, plums and honey with a delicate peppery finish.