I find myself within reach of something of a milestone. I only have three kinds of tea from my original splurge left to write notes on! Wonder if I can finish tonight? If not tonight, I should definitely be able to tomorrow. Then on to the even more dubious milestone of finishing drinking them all. Sometimes I leap before I look, as was the case here. Had I looked, I would probably have skipped bags altogether and gone straight to loose leaf. But live and learn.
Before I started on this journey, I didn’t know there was such a thing as white tea. I knew about blacks and greens, certainly, and even oolong. But the sheer existence of white was a surprise. When I first read about it, I thought it sounded like something I’d like. And now that I’ve tried some, I do — though I have yet to figure out where it best fits into my day. It’s not an early morning tea (need heavily caffeinated teas for that) and it’s not an afternoon tea, really (oolong, or green fits there). It’s not really a dessert tea because I’m prefer strong flavors in those. And then I worry that by late evening it’s too late for even it’s reputedly small amount of caffeine. This may be the reason that of all the boxes of teabags I have in my cupboard still, the white tea boxes have the most left in them.
It could also be that I haven’t yet taken the time to perfect how to steep them, and so they intimidate me a little. At least, moreso than other teas. I seem to have more success with lower temperatures and longer steeps — the flavors seem to come out a little bit more that way. But one day I’ll set aside some time and do an organized test of various steeping temperatures and times for different kinds of whites, and then maybe I can overcome my feelings of intimidation.
This is one of the three types of bagged tea I have left to write a note about, and one of the others is also a Numi white tea. The type of white tea this one is is not identified on the bag’s packaging.
The bag has a dusky, nonspecific plant smell, with a jungle flower feel to it. The liquor has an apricot color. The aroma is dusky floral, too, with something I think, from what I have read, is usually referred to as stone fruit? In any case, I don’t find it easily identifiable as a specific fruit — it could be peach, apricot, nectarine, or a combination. There’s a sweetness to it.
It tastes very much like it smells. Heavy, dark floral notes with a suggestion of fruit. The aftertaste is surprisingly fresh, and a tiny bit sweet.
It will be interesting to try other Osmanthus white teas, now that I have a baseline. This one is reasonably tasty for a bagged tea.