Setup (teapot method)
- Vessel: glass teapot (250 ml)
- Leaf: 7,4 grams (sample bag)
- Water: 80 Celsius
- Steeping time: 1m, 1m30s, 2m
Dry leaf – Somewhat long, twisted in loop fashion with fluffy appearance and about 40% of white hairs. The aroma is very rich with clear notes of snap peas with grassy edge.
Wet leaf – Relatively wholesome, it seems to be a fragile kind due to a young leaf and processing method. Airs of brothy vegetable notes with some nutty components in the back.
Infusion – I must criticize Teavivre’s preparation instructions a little bit before I move on the tasting. It seems that the teapot methods on some of their teas result in unbalanced cups, Oriental Beauty Oolong and Fengqing Black Dragon Pears to be precise. I was a bit afraid that this might happen with this tea as well and I’m glad that it didn’t.
This tea is a ‘loud’ one, it doesn’t slowly introduce you with its nuances like some more delicate green would, it actually hits you with a rich and intensive mouthful and leaves you to decompose its notes as you sip on. I think this is by far, so far, the best experience I ever had with vegetable character in tea. It bears intensive notes of corn, eggplant and even some squash, and the eggplant is the one I found the most interesting. I remember when I was a little boy that eggplant had an almost bitter taste with a bite at the top of the tongue, and this tea reproduces it perfectly.
Aside the vegetable components that bears some pleasant and refreshing bitterness there are some grassy notes that might hint on some more brothy Japanese greens, altogether with nutty elements of roasted chestnut and cashew.
The other cups show a slow decline of vegetable components allowing some sweetness and even flowery notes to develop. Third cup bears some astringency, but not enough to shake the overall impression.
Setup (gaiwan method)
- Vessel: porcelain gaiwan (85 ml)
- Leaf: 4 grams
- Water: 80 Celsius
- Steeping time: 30s, 50s, 1m20s, 1m40s
Infusion – Gaiwan method on the other hand shows some more bite, better pronounced nutty notes, and emphasizes more on the corn note than the other vegetable components.
I remember last year’s Bi Luo Chun being quite good, but this fresh pick definitely beats it, which comes at the price (this – 15$/100gr, last year – 10-11$/100g).