Tie Guan Yin-Iron Goddess of Mercy-Standard

Tea type
Oolong Tea
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  • “_(FREE SAMPLE PROVIDED BY ESGREEN, THANK YOU!)_ In a third monthly shipment of tea samples sent to me by ESGREEN I got this TGY. There are other goodies like Hou Kui and Dan Cong, so I'm hoping...” Read full tasting note
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    kOmpir 67 tasting notes

From ESGREEN

Grade: Standard, Machine-made.
Flavour Type: Lite Orchid Aroma
Storage Conditions: Seal tightly, store in refrigerator.
Other Names: Ti Kwan Yin, Anxi Tie Guan Yin, Iron Goddess of Mercy
Origin: An Xi, Fujian Province of China

This is probably the most famous of all Chinese Oolong teas.

Tie Guan Yin is the most famous tea bush in Anxi City, which lies in Fujian Province. “Tie” meaning “iron”, refers to density of this tightly twisted tea or its dark oxidized color. It is a common Chinese habit to describe heavy objects with this term “Guan Yin” is the name of the Buddhist bodhisattva of compassion. Also known as the “Iron Goddess of Mercy” and the tea is as magnificent as its name implies.

There are many legends surrounding the origin of its name and one of it tells the story of a kind-hearted but poor farmer named Wei Yin.

Despite working hard every day to make a living, Wei Yin would spend his free time tending an abandoned Guan Yin (Goddess of Mercy) temple he found near his place.

One day, he fell asleep in the temple and dreamed about the Goddess telling him to look for a cave behind the temple.

There, he found a single tea shoot where he took home and planted it in an iron pot. Slowly, it grew into a tea bush with exceptional quality tea leaves.

Wei then gave cuttings to his neighbors and friends to grow. The County soon prospered due to the popularity of the tea.

Tie Guan Yin can now be found in the menu of most Chinese restaurants throughout the world.

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1 Tasting Note

86
67 tasting notes

(FREE SAMPLE PROVIDED BY ESGREEN, THANK YOU!)

In a third monthly shipment of tea samples sent to me by ESGREEN I got this TGY. There are other goodies like Hou Kui and Dan Cong, so I’m hoping to review those soon as well.
I’m not keen on drinking Tie Guan Yin, and I guess I can blame really low quality leaf that was first introduced to my palate. It was about two years ago that I ordered some cheap TGY on eBay and I barely drank a third of quarter kilo bag. It was too flowery and astringent to me although I tried to make it in different ways I always got similar results. So I gave the rest to my friend saying that if he don’t likes it he may throw it away, compost it, or whatever he wants.

Anyways, I’ve tried two nice TGY’s recently, and this is the latest addition. I must say that I was surprised when I read on ESGREEN’s site that TGY should be brewed by using 1 gram of dry leaf per 50 ml. So far I got used to overcrowded teapot, using a whole 7-8 gram foil bag, but it seems that I might pull off three sessions with single bag now.

Setup:

Gaiwan (85 ml)
Leaf – 2 grams
Water – 100 Celsius
Time – 55 sec, 45 sec, 70 sec, 100 sec

Leaf & Infusion:

Dry leaf – Leaf is somewhat small for an average TGY and tightly curled with some thin brown stalks. It’s pale emerald tone reveal that this might be one of those low roasted TGY’s that have a prominent orchid aroma and short shelf life. Deeper sniff reveals some buttery notes.

Wet leaf – Thin with dull green tone, slightly oxidized on the edges. Most of the leaf is whole but there are some ripped and broken ones due to its delicacy.

Infusion(1st) – Clear liquor with light emerald tone and touch of yellow hue. Orchid note is subtle but consistent with some buttery notes in background. Taste is light and crisp, astringency-free and long lasting flowery aftertaste.

Infusion(2nd) – In second steep, light and aromatic refreshing profile is being boosted by some grassy notes and there is a light tingling in throat with short linger.

Infusion(3rd) – As orchid aroma fades buttery notes take the lead, giving a more of saturated aspect to this infusion.

Infusion(4th) – In this infusion almost all of flowery fragrance is lost and buttery note seems to lost its intensity as well. In return, this made a way for a sweet finish to develop and linger for some time.

Infusion(5th) – Identical to previous with slow decline in overall taste.

Conclusion – Although I didn’t pushed this TGY to its limits I really enjoyed sipping this, and it seems that I’ll be finishing the rest very soon. I was really surprised with its quick taste shift in first three steeps and I think that it’s a good candidate for TGY introduction and those kind of people that don’t like to wait for too many steeps to notice the difference in taste.

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