This is enjoyable. I steeped it for the recommended 3 mins as I have a massive headache and was not feeling the gongfu mojo. As such this review shall be brief and edited over time (I have enough for one or two more samples).

Smell is very familiar, reminding me of the white Darjeeling, but I can’t be sure. Leaves are very unfamiliar, I really only have experience with variations on silver needle so very spring green leaves amongst the buds was most welcome though there are also brown bits and scraggly bits and choppy bits. Smell of brewed leaves and liquor is familiar as well, sweet artichoke, that is probably not at all close to artichoke but it comes to mind. Taste is all nectar and grain though after reading the brief description melon and but certainly fit the bill.

There is something similar to Upton’s Downy White Pekoe Yin Zhen which I did go ahead and finish up western style the other day, that says not quite top quality. Maybe it’s in the floaty bits or the dull brown bits but it translates to the cup and while it’s not poor quality and still enjoyable, I’m not blown away. But I’m cranky right now and am going to withhold rating.

Drinking the last of this nearly a month later: first steep is definitely melon with some herb, second steep is totally green beans, I should know, I’m eating some for lunch ;)

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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Druid, artist, poet, mum, lover of tea, ritual and myth. I grew up on Celestial Seasons herbals but fell in love with straight loose leaf tea working at my local Teavana for a year. I am grateful for the introduction and the experience, but have moved on.

I see tea as an experience for the senses, I like to imagine tasting the land and the weather as well as the effect of sun, air, fire and the human hand. I have a soft spot for shu pu’er, yabao, scented oolongs, wuyi oolongs, taiwanese tea as well as smooth naturally sweet blacks, creamy greens and surprisingly complex whites.

I began ordering lots of samples from Upton to educate myself on different varieties of tea we didn’t have at work and have fallen head over heels for the unique offerings from Verdant Tea. I am learning things I like: buttery mouthfeel, surprising sweet or spice notes, woodiness, mineral notes, depth and complexity and things I don’t: astringency, dry and sour notes.

I collect tea tins and am in danger of collecting pots, though I am trying to restrain the urge due to current lack of space. I brew mostly in a glass infuser mug or a tea maker, only using cast-iron for company now (still need to get a gaiwan) and tend not to sweeten my teas unless they are British or fruity and iced, which is not often.

As far as ratings, I lack a definite system and haven’t been assigning numbers lately, wanting to spend multiple sessions with a tea first. I usually only log a tea once, unless it is a new harvest or I have significantly different observations, but will go back and edit or comment if I find something interesting or new.

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Baker Street, Berea, Ohio

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