Yuren Tang

Recent Tasting Notes

81

While visiting various tea vendors in Taiwan, I generally agreed with my co-travelers on which of the teas being sold were the most enjoyable. In one tiny shop in Taipei (Yu Ren Tang), however, I chose to differ from my friend and picked a 2010 unroasted Fo Shou instead of the roasted 2011.

Since I returned I’ve been disappointed in my choice. Each time I’ve infused this tea it’s been overly light and with only a ghost of toasty sweetness. I kept wondering how I had made such an error in tasting.

Fortunately, this tasting was different. Either due to the year that’s passed since I purchased the tea or some magic of the (rather large) number of leaves I used, these infusions were golden dark, richly mouth-filling, and quite aromatic in the mouth.

I hope to brew many more fine cups of this oolong as I try to unravel the secrets of its deliciousness.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 1 min, 15 sec

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96

This Oolong has the body of a Bai Hao or Sun Moon Lake, but tastes more delicate than its leaf size and color suggests. even with really quick infusions, the full flavor comes out immediately. each sip is a well rounded taste of sweet honeyed pecans.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 30 sec

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81

This time I allowed a full 2 minutes for the first infusion and the flavor was remarkable. Delicate sweetness following as a surprise after a warm enfolding mouthfeel of what tasted to me like a Bai Mu Dan. Unfortunately I believe that such a long steeping took most of what the tea had to offer and the remaining infusions were lackluster and only sparse echoes of the first flavor. Perhaps a hotter temperature for shorter?

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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92

I’m finding this tea is like no other, to me. Due to its leaf size and production style/timing- I feel they almost pick this tea from the bottom up; this tea is in a class all its own. I immediately fell in love with this tea when I tried my first cup at the Yuren Tang shop in Taipei.

This variety of Fo Shou- Buddha’s Hand, is semi oxidized, unroasted, and rolled like an oolong. It, however doesn’t show any characteristics of any oolongs found in Taiwan.

The dry leaves aren’t as bright green as a lot of the rolled oolongs I have seen, but have a darker deeper green. Has a nice vegetal, ala artichoke heart or steamed green bean smell.

Like the smell, the artichoke and green beans come through in the taste. It starts out like, but gradually gets heavier, leaving a pleasant rich vegetal flavor that finishes on the tart side. Not the most intricate tea, but incredibly far from straight forward.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 1 min, 15 sec

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81

This tea is unroasted.

Wet leaves have the aroma of slightly sour and tart raspberries. Almost like the yeasty smell of a lambic beer. Crisp and clean flavor; a little nutty like a White Peony tea. The dark amber color in the cup would imply a much thicker texture or a roasted tea, but infusion after infusion it continues crisp and clean on the tongue with just a hint of nuttiness and a smoothness that sets it above Bai Mu Dan. At the fourth infusion (done at 3 minutes) the taste is like puffed rice: sweet and mouth-filling. I think this tea would do best infused a little longer than other oolongs. Infusion five I brewed for 4.5 minutes and he flavor continues smooth and sweet. No dryness or astringency at all. The wet leaves are huge after they unroll! 

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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