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Recent Tasting Notes
This isn’t bad! Most if not all people know about the stereotypical Earl Grey so I will write about the differences I found in this one. Sure it’s bold but what I am picking up on what is different than most I have tried is a peppery type taste behind the floral notes. I found this to be interesting and masculine. Yes, I can taste the bergamot but I didn’t find it to be over-the-top…which is just fine by me. The Darjeeling taste is lovely! I think that is the best part of this tea!
Big Red Robes seem to be everywhere these days. A year ago, I didn’t even know what the hell it was, now I can’t trip over a tea bush without seeing a damn robe. That said, of all the ones I’ve tried, this is the only one that lives up to the hypothetically expensive promise of its regal origins. Sweet rice and fruit notes aplenty.
It’s a very good Darjeeling…but only a passable Earl Grey. The citrus-sour bergamot aspect – even with the inclusion of orange blossoms was very understated. For a bolder brew, adhere to Canton’s double-or-nothin’ recommendation of 2 teaspoons of leaves to a 6oz cup.
Because of the delicacy of this oolong, I decided to brew this in a gaiwan with short infusions. First, while I heated the water, I took a look and smell of the dry leaf. Opening the pouch, I bring it to my nose and inhale deeply. The scent is sweet and heavy. Complex, because the heaviness and “darkness” in it seem to be along a different track than the sweetness, which seems to spiral through the tea, never settling in one place. The leaves look dark, twisted, and almost fragile. I rinse the leaves and prepare to begin.
The first steeping is for 30 seconds, and produces a deep and sweet smelling liquor that entrances the nose. The flavour mimics the scent, with a floral profile and a dark flavour reminiscent of a Formosa oolong. A sweet aftertaste sits on the tongue and coats the inside of the mouth. Immensely potent describes this steeping well.
I eagerly steep the leaves again. This steeping is much more subdued. The various elements are well-pronounced. This tea is very delicious and is quite the joy to drink.
By the third steeping, the aroma has become lighter and more vegetal, while maintaining its sweetness. The sweetness of flavour, mingling with the newly developed vegetal flavours, bursts in the mouth quite pleasantly.
The fourth steeping seems to have leveled out the flavour profile. It tastes much like the third steeping. I resteep the leaves again and decide that I am not going to get any more transformations from this delectable tea.
I will continue to steep these leaves until they give out, but this has so far been an excellent experience.
I give this tea an 85/100 on my personal enjoyment scale.
This is another of the teas i have recently revisited using the glass brewing method.
Prompted by my recent success with a certain tai ping hou kui, i thought i would try brewing this modest yellow in this fashion.
Using the standard teapot method i found this tea to be mostly unremarkable, in fact as a yellow tea goes i found it distinctly green, not a bad thing but not yellow in the same way as a Jun Shan.
I took a standard 250ml glass, 2.8g of the tea and used 60 degree c water.
The taste really really suited this method of brewing, if i recall i got about 4 or more refills, ith a good flavour that persisted pretty much consistently until it finally died.
With the standard teapot method i think this tea tastes far too savoury and beany.
Using a glass and refill method it is more akin to say a Xu Fu Long Ya, not quite as much bite.
Overall i don’t think of this as a yellow, i think this years crop is very very green, so on a technical point i don’t think its what i would call a terrific example.
However, does that really matter?
Probably to some, but as i treat yellows greens and whites all the same it really just comes down to what i enjoy drinking.
And i have to say breed in this manner i am now enjoying this tea!
WTR score of 88. Lighter in aftertaste (sweetness). Norbu has generally performed better in consistently sourcing ali shans.
compare to other ali shans on Walker Tea Review: http://walkerteareview.com/http:/walkerteareview.com/tag/ali-shan
The sharp, brothy green element dominates this tea over warm and subtly honeyed flavors underlying the body. The extra fermentation adds wonderful depth, softness and a marvelous aftertaste to what would have been a potentially bracing experience kind of like adding dried fruit to a salad of bitter greens and walnuts.
Canton teas superior Long Jing is one of the best i have had this year.
It is superbly smooth and balanced, i would say slightly more nutty than grassy, but essentially just beautiful balance and smoothness.
Lasts well into the 3rd infusion, leaf structure still nice and compact and with a strong nut smell after 1st and 2nd infusions.
It is twice the price of their standard grade but to be honest it is not only twice as good but gives twice as many infusions.
The dry leaves smell a lot like Dragon Well. The color of the tea is an extremely light yellow.
Wow! I know you are not supposed to base the taste of the tea on it’s color… but because it was so light, I thought it was going to be rather mellow… it was not. It has an intense fresh, grassy taste with a nutty and buttery background. Even with the astringency, the tea was a pleasure to drink.
Basically, it reminded me a lot of Dragon Well… only ten times smoother and fresher.