Steepster was misbehaving and wouldn’t let me post tasting notes the evening I tried this, so I’m posting now from memory. I should also mention that I did the conventional mesh-ball brewing on this, not gongfu, so I might have different things to say once I’ve gotten around to doing it “right” (is any way really “right” if it yields a great cup of tea? Anyway…)
I have pretty high expectations of everything I buy from Verdant, and this one met them solidly, if not spectacularly. The leaf is neat-looking, as others have mentioned: very dark green and obviously hand-flattened, so each leaf is sort of bladelike. Some are very long (I had to break three or four of them to fit them in the mesh ball). The inside of the bag is covered with beige fuzz, which must have come from the leaves, but there doesn’t seem to be fuzz on the leaves—interesting. The smell in the bag is rich and vegetal.
This really does brew up into an almost colorless light-yellow brew, so don’t make the mistake of over-brewing trying to get some color into it! I let it cool a little too long while I answered the phone, but maybe this gave the flavor a little time to develop. Flavor: light, refreshing, perhaps more like a white tea than a green tea, but with a pronounced gyokuro-style brothiness that is really satisfying, and a consistent undertone of rich veggie-like flavor. This is not a strongly flavored tea, and I didn’t taste any bitterness. Just good flavor and that brothiness that I like.
I wouldn’t be surprised if this were a dud as iced tea, but I guess stranger things have happened. Anyway, I don’t try everything iced, because I have other cold beverages I enjoy (and in any case I live in Wisconsin, where at this time of year, one increasingly enjoys one’s beverages hot!).
Definitely, I’m glad I bought this, and will enjoy it every time I drink it, but it’s not the life-changing brew that my first Verdant Tieguanyin was.