7g with 175ml water in a zi ni rong tian yixing teapot dedicated to Phoenix Oolongs. Single rinse with immediate pour – 10 second contact time. Multiple infusions in rapid succession using 85 degree C water. Takes 10 seconds to pour from the pot, so settled infusion is only 0-10 seconds for first seven brews.
Leaves twisted and fairly intact, though they don’t look too handsome. Toasty and floral dry fragrance mostly unnoticeable until placed in warmed pot. Wet aroma is like walking into a greenhouse. Not the heady meshed, buttery florals of Taiwan oolongs – here they are distinct, crisp flower and greenery aromatics of such a multitude that it is really difficult to parse them out. Definitely orchid, carnation, and lily. Also some hyacinth, tulip, African violet, and just a touch of star jasmine. Greenery aromatics of wetland grasses, oak trees, ferns, and duckweed. There’s also a good amount of wet lava rock, clove, allspice, and yellow peach in there. Base aroma is toasty and sweet with a warm adobe brick mineral accent. Liquor carries more of the toasty notes than florals. Color is clear light yellow.
First three infusions are smooth, crisp, clean, and lean toward toasty dried grasses and hops aromas and flavors. The florals are there, but are sort of a hushed persistent chatter in the background. For the fourth infusion the florals let go of their restraint and come forward full force. Carnation is the most present in the cup, but lily takes over for the nose and afteraroma. Roasted chestnut, toasted poppyseed and crispy noodle characteristics come through in the sixth and seventh infusions and warm cut willow and cattail herbaceous notes mix with gentle spiciness similar to grains of paradise mixed with paprika and roasted chipotle. Bewitching balance of sweet, spice, herbal-bitter, mineral, and nectarine-astringent. Aroma is shifting and complex but nose, afteraroma and sweet aftertaste more heady than the draught. By the seventh infusion I’m really reminded of the smell and taste of the air while hiking through freshwater marsh on a mildly warm late summer evening.
Tea has much more to offer, but I’m being lulled to sleep by its comforting melody of aromas and flavors. I’ll have to refresh these leaves in a couple hours.
Yum yum, tasty toasty aromatic inviting smooth sensualness…