You might think that because this tea & the Imperial Gold Needle Yunnan share similarities in their names, they would be similar, right?
Yes & No.
They are both beautiful, straight buds, but this one is more charcoal shades, with highlights of gold, rust, & olive, whereas the other was much lighter in color. This one is not nearly so lovely in the aroma, however if I hadn’t drank the other one first, I’d think this one smells awesome too, LOL. The warmed leaf has an almost incense quality to it that I find alluring, & a sweetness as well.
I followed the exact same parameters:
5G + 4oz X 15/30/45/60 seconds, continuing to add 15 per steep.
This tea makes a much darker cup, which starts out sweet & then leans to savory. Instead of Maltomeal, I’m having a dark slice of toasted whole grain bread, the dense chewy slightly sour kind of bread that you’d enjoy with a winter pot of hearty stew. It’s also kind of hoppy, in my opinion, & bolder.
I think the last time I drank this one, I did a standard cup of tea, rather than gongfu steepings, & I got a completely different flavor profile! More experiments required! :)