A month ago or so, Fong Mong Tea offered a free sample of this year’s pick of this tea on their Facebook page. It was a really pleasant surprise when I saw that I got three more samples so I spent that weekend (and the next one) in tasting them.
For you that don’t know about Fong Mong Tea, it’s a eBay seller of Taiwanese teas, ranging from 150 gr to 600 gr pack.
I borrowed a nice Canon DSLR for that weekend as I planned to spend that weekend in tea tasting and taking some nice pictures for a change (I usually use my phone camera for that. See my blog – link at the bottom).
I didn’t hesitate but emptied the whole sample bag (6 grams) in 3 Oz gaiwan, and poured 85-90C water over it. Prior to that I took a short glance at the dry leaf, it was big for an average Taiwanese rolled oolong, with some woody stalks attached to them. The initial aroma of the dry leaf is subtle fresh with grassy-herbaceous elements, and after blowing some hot air additional milky and buttery notes are revealed with a warm background.
After a short rinse I started with 45s steep, followed by 60s, 75s, 90s, 105s, 120s.
My current experience with Jin Xuan Oolongs is that they bear a nice milky element, and this one has a decent amount of it, not too much of it to be taken as ‘milky’ but not too little either. Flowery note is dominant in this cup, being present all the way as the liquor enters, slides and finishes, it even has a little bite at the tip of the tongue (pretty unusual for a flowery component). Finish is characterized with warm milky-buttery coat and some vegetable notes. The liquor has a bright jade green tone.
Following steeps show immediate decline of flowery element, leaving room for vegetable elements to take over, milky notes are still there but are better pronounced when liquor cools down a bit. Along the way there can be sensed a certain etheric component lingering in the background and getting more pronounced in the second half of the session.
Wet leaf is pretty much wholesome with a long stalk with up to four leaves attached, including some buds as well. Notes of old peas (dried, stored, then boiled) air of the olive green heap with a slight freshness wrapped around it.