98

So. Good.

I really like this flavor profile.

It reminds me very much of Royal Garland, the ‘white oolong’ (okay, my term for it, but it’s actually fairly accurate, as it turns out) from Samovar that I adore. The leaves look very different, of course, as they’re not white buds processed as oolong; I assume they’re leaves…they lack the fuzzy yarn look of the Royal Garland.

It has that sweet, fruity, tropically awesome taste though, and the aroma is so juicy and inviting. Roasted pineapple and plantains, nectarines, a bit of darjeeling-esque muscatel that doesn’t seem as sharp or bitter, no astringency. I loved this assembly of flavors in the Garland, and I loved it (even faint as it was) in the Tankha I bought, and it’s no surprise that I love it here.

The description suggests very little leaf and longer steeping times, but based on Ricky’s tasting notes for Phoenix Oolong and his experiences with finicky leaves, I decided to err on the side of caution and use more leaf at a very short steep time. Thirty seconds seems like hardly enough time to steep tea leaves to me — I’m so used to black teas — but the resulting cup doesn’t lack for flavor in the least.

I’m very much looking forward to playing with this one.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 45 sec

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Bio

Ohhh, I dunno. I like tea but I’m kind of a tea newbie. At this point I can say with authority that I may never be anything else, no matter how many teas I try…there is always something new out there.

I write a lot.

I also play way too many video games.


Ratings! (Bout time, wot?) This is a new arrangement, so…subject to change!

1-10: Not potable. First-sip disasters.

11-30: Intensely unpleasant…won’t catch me finishing the cup.

31-50: I really don’t like it…but maybe somebody else out there would.

51-70: Drinkable, but probably not the first thing I’m going to reach for.

71-90: Pretty good tea, and stuff that there’s a good chance I’ll have on-hand. Will do in a pinch at the low end, all the way up to regular visitors to my infuser on the high end.

91-100: Teas I really do not want to be without.

Location

Boston/Cambridge

Website

http://sophistre.tumblr.com/

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