1 heaping TB for 500mL water, drunk bare (no milk or sweetener).
Left the leaves steeping merrily in the travel mug in this morning, as I needed to do the morning driving …
The faint peppery scent of mad hot Yunnan wafting up from a travel cup as I naviagte traffic on a rainsoaked morning — now THAT is a blessing to count. It got strong, of course, but not bitter, just very, very rich. One caveat: I wouldn’t dare drink it this strong on an empty stomach. Same goes for super-steeped Assam.
Rich and mysterious, like dark silk in winter: you wouldn’t think something normally so delicate and fine could keep you warm, but it does. The peppery notes seem to mute as the steeps past 6 minutes, but they fight back on the aftertaste. The honey and, well, Yunnan tea notes deepen. Gets a tiny bit smoky when it’s this strong, too.
A super-steep gives this normally light (not thin) bodied tea more of a medium body that drenches the taste buds.
1.5 tsp for 330mL water @100C. Steeped 4 minutes. Drunk bare.
Oh my GAWD.
It’s been a long time since I’ve had any Black Needle Yunnan, and this tea from Stash is very, very good. Liquor is dark brass. Notes of honey, musk, pepper and minerals. Clean finish. My favourite Yunnan. I forgot the leaves can be re-steeped and am kicking myself for tossing my leaves after just one cup.
Worth every penny, even shipping.
1 scant TB for 450mL water, bare.
Musky, smoky, peppery. As I’ve said before, an excellent black needle Yunnan. I hoard this one a bit, as ordering from Stash in Oregon, US, gets expensive — nearly $15.00 in shipping alone to Canada — so I order a lot at once. My favourite Yunnan. Dancing tastebuds here this morning.
2 tsp for 300mL water @95C, steeped four minutes.
Yeah. That’s a lot of tea, but the leaves are long and fluffy.
Dark brass to copper liquor. Honey, musk and minerals. Not as peppery as a batch I drank from a few years ago but still lovely. Smells like an old forest: a bit dark, a bit sweet, ancient mysteries. Superb black tea. No bitterness.
Drunk bare, mo nilk or sweetener.
At it again … trying varied steep times today. Three minutes: like hearing the voice of a beloved round the corner. Five minutes: Yunna bliss, as I’ve noted before.
Also drinking this from my Royal Albert china cup and saucer. Don’t know why, but tea always tastes best to me in a fine china cup. Next best is a clear glass mug.
1 TB for 500mL water, drunk bare, second infusion
Less smoke and honey, more mineral and pepper. Given that this is a second infusion after a 5-minute steep, impressive amount of flavour.
Ye gods, I love this stuff.
Back to the Stash black needle Yunnan after a flirt with David’s Tea Black Needles while I longingly wait for my local teashop to get their supply of Yunnan back …
oh, sweet musky toasty peppery bliss. So clean. Winey. Very smooth.
1 scant TB for 500mL water, drunk bare.
Dry leabes are long and look like living honeyed brass.
Note to self: heaping TB is the better option. Still, this Yunnan is luxurious without being heinously decadent. Layers and layers of flavour today, including honey, smoke and pepper, earth. Crisp finish. No bitterness. Yes, I abused it again today with a longer-than-approved steep, but hell, I like it. Excellent for a rainy day. I am craving a malty Assam; this Yunnan will make me appreciate the Assam all the more, while at the same time being fab in and of itself.
Le sigh. Le bliss.