I tried this tea at Samovar in downtown San Francisco. The leaves are chipped out of the mandarin (literally with a tool similar to a chisel), then there is an initial quick rinse before the first steep. They said to steep for 30 – 45 seconds – I found I preferred the shorter steeping time. Once I put too much water in the pot for one cup and steeped for a few minutes… definitely a mistake!
I liked the tea both without and with the orange peel. I found it more subtle without (unsurprisingly). After drinking 4 or 5 brews I smelled the contents and I loved the sharp, earthy scent. Overall, really interesting and delicious.
(water temperature note may be off as I didn’t brew it myself)