90

I tried three 8 oz steepings with 1 teaspoon of these leaves, 2 min at about 175F each time.

The dry leaves smell like dry hay and, unexpectedly, chocolate.

1st
The leaves partially unfurled. The liquor has a powerful nutty aroma that I can smell with my face feet away from the cup as I pour it. Putting my nose down in the cup gives the nutty aroma plus a weaker aroma of something like something with sauteed onions. The appearance is a very light yellow green liquor, crystal clear.

The taste is light and smooth, with a slightly creamy feel and a body that is surprising for something so faint in color that only steeped 2 minutes.

This has a strong nutty flavor and a pleasant amount of light bitterness. There is little sweet and less than gum-tingling astringency. Swishing around my mouth turns the nutty flavor to something more like coconut. There is a sweet and bitter aftertaste, with a faint bitter coming in first and then a stronger sweet remaining.

This cup of tea went fast.

2nd
There are several nice sized dots of tea oil floating on the surface of this cup. The liquor is greener and darker in color. There is significantly less nutty aroma. The creaminess is gone, leaving the nutty flavor and some bitterness. Astringency is more present.

There is a slight vegetal, green flavor moving in reminding me of, edamame?! The nutty flavor gets some mint character.

The aftertaste makes me think “Wow.” It is an almost tangible sweet with some floral notes.

The nuttiness is stronger and harsher. I make my rating based on this more complex and interesting cup.

My stomach feels full and sloshy, and I’m not sure where this tea is going (will it get meaner?), but I forge ahead. . .

3rd
The color is lighter and much more brown than green. There is an aroma of steamed edamame over the cup, but the aroma is light overall.

This taste gets an “ooohh” from me; it tastes like the water used to steam a batch of edamame but with a sweet kick, and not sugar sweet, but tea sweet. The edamame is the only real flavor note. Bitterness is gone, and a bit of creaminess has come back.

The “ka-pow” aftertaste is gone, replaced by just a respectable sweet aftertaste.

My fears were unfounded. The 2nd steep gave up all the leaves’ fierceness. This cup is mellow and friendly. The volume of the flavor is on the order of something like the first steep of Tazo China Green Tips.

I appreciate that this adventure in a cup has been made available in an affordable sampler. I think I could be happy enjoying just the first and second steeps here.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Spoonvonstup

Very interesting! I always think that these leaves smell chocolatey, but I was never sure if they really did smell that way, or if my mind were playing tricks on me. Have you tried the Laoshan Black yet? The chocolate is in that tea in full force. I usually make this pouring between two glasses, but whenever I make it in a larger pot, I also get a hint of something minty. Again, I always wondered if this was just something in my head or in my pot, so it’s nice to know it’s really there.
I’m surprised you could steep the leaves as you did three times! I usually give up on them after one larger pot, and only resteep when I’m doing gongfu style. I will have to try it your way and see what happens.

teamax

I’m also glad to have some confirmation about the mint flavors and chocolate aroma. I did try the Laoshan black and was surprised by it, too.

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Spoonvonstup

Very interesting! I always think that these leaves smell chocolatey, but I was never sure if they really did smell that way, or if my mind were playing tricks on me. Have you tried the Laoshan Black yet? The chocolate is in that tea in full force. I usually make this pouring between two glasses, but whenever I make it in a larger pot, I also get a hint of something minty. Again, I always wondered if this was just something in my head or in my pot, so it’s nice to know it’s really there.
I’m surprised you could steep the leaves as you did three times! I usually give up on them after one larger pot, and only resteep when I’m doing gongfu style. I will have to try it your way and see what happens.

teamax

I’m also glad to have some confirmation about the mint flavors and chocolate aroma. I did try the Laoshan black and was surprised by it, too.

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Bio

I need coffee; I love tea.

I have been learning about tea since I was a teenager, but joining Steepster has accelerated my education.

I gave up soda (completely) this Spring and have re-discovered tea to fill the afternoon void.

I like strong, well balanced tastes. I ferment my own mead, cider, and sauerkraut.

I like green tea, oolong, black tea, flavored black tea, pu-erh, and some tisanes! Oh, and Mate, too!

Lately, I have been most enjoying nutty green teas and oolong teas.

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