Thank you so much to Anna for this delicious sample!
I have never sampled an Alishan Jinxuan before so I wasn’t sure what to expect; although, I knew it is a greener Oolong, and you can definitely see that. I wasn’t getting much aroma out of the bag, so I warmed my glass press and warm, creamy, toasty elements greeted me. The wet leaves were creamy, roasty, toasty goodness. The cup is a lighter yellow with similar, but milder notes in the cup.
The flavor is so smooth and creamy (buttery), with decent roasty, toasty notes enticing my palate. Very smooth-I am wondering if juicy is apprpriate here, even though there isn’t fruity flavors coming forth. On the back of my tongue, I did notice a definite herbaceous quality to this tea, that is secondary to the other qualities.
My second cup was more aromatic from the wet leaves (more creamy, roasty, toasty, & now vegetal) to the cup itself. The cup was more medium yellow, with a sweeter, more pronounced aroma. What a soothing & calming cup, with a balanced and most flavorful creamy texture. Roasty, toasty, and buttery, with vegetal notes marching forward. Yes, definitely herbaceous in nature, but not bitter. The most enjoyable of the three cups for me because of the balance between the toasty and vegetal notes. Steeped for 1.5 minutes around 195 degrees.
My last cup was still full and enjoyable, but the toasty, creamy qualities were fading fast while the greener, vegetal notes stole the show. While smooth, these characters seemed a little boastful, and I wasn’t quite ready for the turn of events! I was pleasantly surprised, but longed for the former flavors. I used boiling water for a 5 minute steep.
The next night I used the rest of my sample, which was more leaf than the previous night. I was hoping to, and managed to get four quality steeps. My steep times and temps were as follows: 1.5 min at 180, 1 min at 180. 1.5 min at 195, & 5 min with boiling water. To avoid getting repetitive, I’ll say that the qualities and desciptions were similar, but more pronounced, aromatic, and flavorful from leaf to cup to stomach! The 3rd cup is worth noting, because the roasty toasty, creamy notes hung on a little longer, before completely abating to the vegetal qualities of the last cup. I did seem to notice lighter fruity flavors on my palate (peaches, possibly peaches), in the 2nd & 3rd cups. Juicy is quite appropriate here for sure. :))
Overall, a very delicious Oolong I would like to taste alot more. I did enjoy the vegetal qualities in the latter cups as well. Thank you Alishan Jin Xuan, for a delicious tea experience, and a special Thank You to Anna! :))
Cupped: Tuesday-Thursday, March 27-29, 2012.
Reviewed: Friday, March 30, 2012.