The January tea of the month reserve club package arrived last week. Part of me feels that being a member is perhaps more money than I should be spending, but so far I have not been disappointed!
When I opened this first one, I was immediately caught up in the aroma of the dry leaves. Smokey & sweet, it brought up images of kettle corn, being made in large kettles the old fashioned way. The smokiness made me thing of a fine pipe tobacco as well. There are other faintly familiar aromas that I’m having a hard time placing. Like canned condensed milk (crazy, I know, but there is a hint of it) This is a very complex & interesting tea!
5G of tea + 4 oz Gaiwan (rinse) X 4 secs (+ 2 secs each steeping)
I’d like to say at this point that I have not always been all that into Lapsang Souchong. Having said that, I’ve been sitting here, sipping cup after cup. I’ve never steeped Lapsang this way, & I was missing out!
The smokey flavor is there, especially in the initial steepings, but not in your face.
There is a real nice sweetness that expands with each steeping. It brings to mind the aforementioned kettle corn, with it’s caramelized brown sugar.
I lost count, but after several steepings there is a creamy mouthfeel & the sweetness lingers, making me think of some kind of vanilla pudding topped with brown sugar that’s been given the flambe treatment. The smoke is still there, but in a very pleasant subtle way.
In the later steepings the sweetness gradually dissipated, giving way to a ‘rocky’ taste, a bright feeling on the tip of my tongue, & yet there were still sprinkles of sugar on top.
I actually made it through 15 courses, although admittedly I only drank about half of some of the cups, combining the 2nd half into a jar, which is in the freezer to chill. I’ll report on that in a little while.
A very yummy tea! Thank you David & Wang Shilin! I will savor it!