I’ve had this tea for a while but never cracked it open. Lately it’s been hard to get in multiple tea days and my greens have suffered. Today, however, I made an effort to pull this one out to give it a taste. My goal is to do something to focus my mind and distract myself from the fact that an offer we put in on a house was just accepted. (My mind whirls with all the things we must do next!)
First off: THE SMELLS! OMG! THE SMELLS! The tea smells insane. SO MUCH GOING ON. It was so hard to stop sniffing the dry leaf. Every sniff is different and they are all delicious! It makes me think of fresh hay and marshmallow (yeah, I don’t know why – sweet and creamy… marshmallows). I made the husband sniff and he got some chocolate from it. Once he said that, I smelled it again and got cocoa. Like the little package of instant cooca with the tiny marshmallows? Yeah that. That’s what I get when I smell this now.
Post steeping, the leaf is different but still incredibly nom. Butter and warm bread and the freshest, sweetest snap peas ever – like, when they are candy-sweet. Delish.
The taste. Oh yeah. Buttery, smooth, fresh, grassy… it’s marvelous. It reminds me more of a Japanese green than a Chinese in overall taste, but there is a darker, heavy note at the end and an super-faint-it’s-almost-not-there mineral endnote that I associate with Chinese greens. As it cools, the sweetness reminds me of a raw sweet potato. Or maybe a yam? Faint bright hints that make me think of lemon, which strikes me as weird but hey, when I take a sip and my brain throws a lemon at me, I listen.
The second steep gives more changes – I smell fresh, pungent chlorophyl along with a note that I can’t quite place but reminds me of the sweet smell in cigars. The fruity smell of unlit tobacco, I suppose. The taste is more in line with what I think of as a Chinese green taste profile. The mineral note is stronger, but there is a strong undercurrent of fresh peaches and honey. Slurping brings out a note of seaweed that is a bit of a cross between wakame (the stuff in miso soup) and nori (the dried sheet used in sushi). There’s also a starchier feeling to the tea itself. Not astringency (yet?), just little prickles of starch. Very nice.
The third steep gives me pretty much an exact replica of the second steep.
I imagine this will go for at least one more steep if not a few more. Unfortunately, i cannot. The caffeine in this has hit me hard. I need to switch to water for a bit! But this is definitely a great tea – there’s a lot going on but manages to be harmonious instead of jumbled. I will like making my way through this one!