1866 Tasting Notes
If I ever meet Wang Yanxin, I’d like to give her a big hug.
Her Jin Jun Mei is wonderful. I also have a secret stash of Yanxin’s Reserve Shu, which is lovely. I think she has excellent taste in tea, & have loved every tea that she’s been connected with (Golden Fleece immediately comes to mind). OK, I admit my relationship with Yu Lu Yan Cha was a little rocky at first, but I’m over that. It’s delicious.
This tea is everything I want it to be. A rich thick mouth, sweet honey that lingers, & a little tangy pepper in the later steepings. I’ve been drinking it most of the day.
I suffered a near tragedy this morning. I was prepping my little blue lotus teapot for gongfu steepings of this awesome tea. My little teapot came with a pretty yellow leash the helps keep the lid in place when you are pouring the tea. I learned right away that it is best to detach the lid from it’s end of the leash when not in use. Also, the leash can be used with my Yixings as well (a nice bonus!). Here’s what I’m talking about:
That site actually gives instructions for making one! yeah!
SO…the double strand that runs up the center of the knots accidentally got pulled most of the way out! Aughghghghghgh!!!
At first I though all was lost. I tried using tweezers to fix it, & that didn’t work. Then I remembered my crochet hooks. I used to crochet a looong time ago, & still have my hooks, just in case I ever have time to take that art up again. Of course,the smallest hook was missing. The next to smallest was small enough. I won’t bore you with the details, but it took awhile, with a few mistakes, but as they say in the i ching, “Perseverence Furthers”. (No, I don’t not throw the
i ching, but my ex hubby did & even went as far as to grow his own Yarrow so that he could do it authentically with yarrow wands).
So now my little lid leash is healed. This tea is the awesome reward.
I’ve been sipping this tea for an hour or 2.
It is sweet, smooth, & has a pastry quality to it.
The flavor is a little flat, but I’m pretty sure that is because my yixing is sucking up a lot of it!
I have enough to sample it again, but I’ll wait awhile & give the yixing time to absorb flavors from other Shu’s as well.
Then we shall see!
Much thanks to Garret for this generous sample!
This is the final tea from the series of teas Sil & I sampled from TTC.
How to describe?
This is one of those ‘bug bite’ teas, so the honey sweetness is there, along with the stone fruit ‘jaminess’ of #154, & a hint of coriander (or at least what my tastebuds translate into coriander!). This also has a nice thickness to it. It’s really very tasty!
This is another interesting tea from TTC.
It’s very smooth, sweet, & again fruity, but not in the same way that the other ones were, & a little tangy. And once again, there is something I taste that I recognize, but can’t quite place.
These teas from TTC are a challenge to my taste buds, as they are very different from what I tend to drink, basically a while new genre of black tea, at least for me.
Following the same steeping parameters as for the other TTC teas today.
This medium roast oolong is interesting. The dry leaf is curled up, like a floral tieguantin might be, but instead of the beautiful jade green, it is more of a tan/brown color palette. There is a taste here that I immediately recognized, but could not place. Then all of a sudden there it was: Strawberry! The roasty taste is mild, & brought to mind toasted walnuts, which made me long for a walnut pastry with a creamy filling & strawberries on top! Wouldn’t that be lovely!
I spent a couple of hours working in my garden. It’s so beautiful outside, & it felt so good to be out there, crawling around, pulling weeds.
Now I’m enjoying this one, following the same parameters I set earlier today for the TTC teas: 1 rounded tsp in my 4 oz porcelain pot, 3/4/& 5 min steeps.
All 3 cups have been delicious, stone-fruity, a little pastry-like, & with a hint of coriander, & a slight floral quality.
If you take those sun moon lake taiwans I was sampling earlier this morning & age them for 30 years, this is what you get! The flavor is of roasted carrots & beets, sweet, rich, & very very different!
I love #147, & I love #154. They are 2 different lots of the Sun Moon Lake Assams from Taiwan Tea Crafts. This one is a little ‘thicker’ than the other one, like a slice of candied fruit dipped in chocolate.
The ensemble here includes the same trio of Bassoon, Oboe, & clarinet, but I’d like to add one more instrument…I’m thinking a rich midrange bagpipe drone…
I need to start composing pieces as a reflection of teas I love…sigh…
First Tea of the day!
This morning Tony flew to Kalamazoo, Michigan. His company is hosting a trade show there, or participating in one, something like that. Either way, he is gone until Tuesday night. I’m not used to being at MY house on sundays, & I don’t have any students or gigs, so it’s a total free day!!
I plan to spend at least part of this day drinking samples of all of the teas Sil & I shared from Taiwan Tea Crafts, in part because I haven’t drank any of them for awhile, & also because TTC is having a SALE! So I need to decide if I want MOAR of any (or all) of these!
This one wins the prize for the most beautiful packaging, lol. The packaging of all of these samples is absolutely beautiful, very colorful, but this one especially. Flavor-wise, this is also one of my favorites. This one & #154 are very similar, with a sweet fruity taste, & I have enough to drink them each one more time after today.
My steeping parameter today is to use my little blue lotus porcelain teapot (roughly 4oz, same size as my yixings, & they all look so nice together on the shelf). This allows me to run 3 full length steepings, but only drink about 12 oz total. As for quantity, I’m treating these teas like I treat Butiki’s Premium Taiwanese Assam, simply because they similar (though the taste is different), with similar leaf size. So I added a slightly heaping tsp to the pot, steeped 3 min at boiling, & then ran 2 more steepings at 4 & then 5min, each into a different cup.
I’m pleased to say that all 3 cups were delicious! This is a refined tea, a lady of Assams if you will. There are no bold bass or high notes here, more like a sweet woodwinds trio: bassoon, oboe, & clarinet. The flavor is rich, gentle, & fruity. Thanks again, Sil, for including me on this order!