The past month has been busy. Between moving into an apartment, cooking for myself all the time now, and my school work I’ve been run a bit ragged. In fact, the only reason I’m writing this and not working on something is becuse I finished a HUGE assignment for my Artificial Intelligence class (written entirely in Lisp, a language I was learning as I went). Regardless, I have a free day, so I can actually write about the tea I’m drinking for a change!
First steep – I threw a generous amount of this in my gaiwan, and I steeped the leaves for a minute with near-boiling water. The result is a deep red tea with a very strongly of a Keemun with lovely wood notes. The flavor of the first cup was very typical of the Keemuns I’ve tried, surprisingly sweet and very clear for such a dark tea. The interesting thing about this tea is that while there’s definitely Keemun, there is something else blended in that I can’t identify. The aftertaste gives it away, with a mineral sensation and a bit of something else a bit more bitter. Regardless, it’s a very pleasant blend and is exactly what I needed to recover from a long night of programming.
Second and Third Steeps – The tea has mellowed remarkably, yet it still retinas the important qualities like the gently sweetness and the odd sensation during the aftertaste. That other sensation and the slight variations in the flavor profile are driving me a bit crazy due to its elusive familiarity, so I’m working my way through the other reviews to try to jog my memory.
Fourth Steep – The big development here is that anything remotely resembling bitterness or astringency is gone, except for an itty-bitty hint during the aftertaste that still defies classification. The main flavor present is similar to caramel, and the tea has this wonderful smoothness that transitions into a mineral feeling with a hint of something bitter/sour. Also, I agree with one of the other reviews of this tea, the other tea in this mix appears to be from the Himalayas, either northern India or Nepal. I’m personally going with Nepal, but it’s hard to be sure. It does remind me of that Jun Chiyabari I got early this year, but that was a long time ago and my recollection is a bit hazy. Whatever, I’m thinking too hard about this, the point is the blend is really great for really trying to think about the flavors, and it’s rather fun to try to guess the mystery part of the blend :)