Fascinating tea. Again Verdant continues to amaze me with their complex and different teas. Upon opening the bag I didn’t really smell anything at all, I smelled a little bit of cardboard but I was trying so hard to smell something that I could have been smelling the cardboard for recycling behind me. The buds are fat and short and fuzzy, they kind of remind me of a Beech trees buds in the way the scales overlap but shorter.
The wet leaves smell was like walking through a wet mixed forest in fall after the leaves have fallen. It was a very wet woody scent. The infusion was more or less clear and had that same woodsy scent with stronger pine notes and a slight floral note.
Taste was clear and bright at first sip followed by pine and cedar notes with the wet woods. There was a spiciness I picked up, like black pepper and a sweet minty like aftertaste. In later steepings the pine/cedar notes take dominance with some sweetness, the floral notes fade, the minty aftertaste kind of hangs around but you have to look for it and the black pepper note disappeared around the third steeping. I’m interested in seeing how this ages.
I steeped this so far about 5-6 times and am about to make another cup. Steeping method is a 5 oz cup with an infuser basket with short steep times with 205F water. The first infusion was about 10 seconds and now I’m steeping about 20 seconds for the 6 or 7 steep.