Happy New Year (or New Year’s Eve, depending)!

Man, this is good! Today I finally worked up the courage to try the five second steep, gongfu method, in my measuring glass. When I made it yesterday using my wonky method it felt like the oolong was jumping from one flavour profile to the next in a chaotic array. This allowed me to taste all of the transitional stages, slowly, step by step. This is simply magical.

I let my mother smell the wet leaves and her reaction was in the negative but then I pleaded her to take a sip of the first steep, and also the fourth one, I think (when the finish became delicious). She told me it was smooth and like drinking a fine eighteen year old scotch. A positive reaction.

I haven’t kept track of how many times I’ve steeped this; I’m just enjoying the transformation of the flavours. It started out malty smooth, had a stage that tasted and smelled like fruit jam, and is now on a buttery, creamy, honey stage. I’m not getting anywhere near as much of that “roasted rice/genmaicha” flavour as I did yesterday. Where did it go?

I don’t have a gaiwan or a device to measure grams but I can do this! Yummy oolong, although I think I still prefer the greener ones.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C
Bonnie

Fun to experiment isn’t it.

CrowKettle

Yes!!! And today I was rewarded for it :)

Cavocorax

Man, I’m so tempted to get a gaiwan! They’re cheaper than I thought.

BoxerMama

I want a gaiwan.

Bonnie

I have 3 gaiwans, a fat white one 5 oz. that is easy to handle and cost $10, a purple clay that I use for shu pu-erh also 5 oz. and has a handle and built in strainer $17, and a stone looking pottery gaiwan with that’s speckled and has a spout 5 oz. also $16 that I mostly use for sheng pu-erh. All three have been great investments because I use them often.
Yunnan Sourcing U.S. (make sure it’s U.S.) is inexpensive if you don’t have a walk-in shop close to you.

Cavocorax

That sounds super reasonable! Do you have to dedicate it to one specific tea, or can you just have an oolong gaiwan, green gaiwan etc?

I’ll check out the website too. I’m in Vancouver so I thought I’d try Chinatown, but I wasn’t sure how I’d know if it’s authentic.

Cavocorax

Ah. I’m mixing up gaiwan and yixing pots, both of which I want. :p

CrowKettle

I’m on the lookout for a nice gaiwan too. Thanks for the tip Bonnie! Those don’t look too expensive. :)
Cavocorax, if you find a good place to buy either a yixing pot or gaiwan in Metro Vancouver let me know!

Cavocorax

Will do!

Bonnie

I have lists of teaware sites for handmade pieces too if anyone is interested.

CrowKettle

I’m interested!

Cavocorax

Me too! I don’t want to buy unless I know it’s ‘the one’. :P I don’t have enough room to buy extra teawares.

CrowKettle – I noticed that ZenTea has a few gaiwan’s for under $10, but idk about the patterns: http://zentealife.com/index.php/teaware/teawares-region/china/gaiwan-mugs-cups.html

They have a yixing pot I like too (with a squirrel on the lid) but it’s almost $40. :|

CrowKettle

I want to check out Zen Tea so badly. That yixing pot is cute and reasonable prices for a gaiwan. I think I’m merely being picky about patterns now.

Cavocorax

Nothing wrong with that! I’m feeling the same way!

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Comments

Bonnie

Fun to experiment isn’t it.

CrowKettle

Yes!!! And today I was rewarded for it :)

Cavocorax

Man, I’m so tempted to get a gaiwan! They’re cheaper than I thought.

BoxerMama

I want a gaiwan.

Bonnie

I have 3 gaiwans, a fat white one 5 oz. that is easy to handle and cost $10, a purple clay that I use for shu pu-erh also 5 oz. and has a handle and built in strainer $17, and a stone looking pottery gaiwan with that’s speckled and has a spout 5 oz. also $16 that I mostly use for sheng pu-erh. All three have been great investments because I use them often.
Yunnan Sourcing U.S. (make sure it’s U.S.) is inexpensive if you don’t have a walk-in shop close to you.

Cavocorax

That sounds super reasonable! Do you have to dedicate it to one specific tea, or can you just have an oolong gaiwan, green gaiwan etc?

I’ll check out the website too. I’m in Vancouver so I thought I’d try Chinatown, but I wasn’t sure how I’d know if it’s authentic.

Cavocorax

Ah. I’m mixing up gaiwan and yixing pots, both of which I want. :p

CrowKettle

I’m on the lookout for a nice gaiwan too. Thanks for the tip Bonnie! Those don’t look too expensive. :)
Cavocorax, if you find a good place to buy either a yixing pot or gaiwan in Metro Vancouver let me know!

Cavocorax

Will do!

Bonnie

I have lists of teaware sites for handmade pieces too if anyone is interested.

CrowKettle

I’m interested!

Cavocorax

Me too! I don’t want to buy unless I know it’s ‘the one’. :P I don’t have enough room to buy extra teawares.

CrowKettle – I noticed that ZenTea has a few gaiwan’s for under $10, but idk about the patterns: http://zentealife.com/index.php/teaware/teawares-region/china/gaiwan-mugs-cups.html

They have a yixing pot I like too (with a squirrel on the lid) but it’s almost $40. :|

CrowKettle

I want to check out Zen Tea so badly. That yixing pot is cute and reasonable prices for a gaiwan. I think I’m merely being picky about patterns now.

Cavocorax

Nothing wrong with that! I’m feeling the same way!

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Profile

Bio

I started my Steepster loose leaf adventure back in 2012. I can’t say I’m completely new anymore, but I still view oolong as a magical, extraterrestrial creature that unfurls in water.

White teas, roasted/fired green teas, and the not so roasted green oolong varieties are my favourites. I enjoy the odd shu puerh too.

Currently looking for the most buttery and sweet green oolong I can find.

Ingredients/flavours I enjoy (in moderation): anise, butter, caramel, cedar, cream, grapefruit, jasmine, lavender, lemon, lilac, lime, maple, marshmallow leaves, melon, mint, orchid, pine, rice, rose, vanilla.

Ingredients/flavours I tend to dislike: apple, cocoa nibs, licorice, marine, peach, stevia

Subjective Rating System 2.0:

91-100: My absolute favourite tea. Will impulsively buy and hoard like a dragon.

86-90: A favourite tea. May have quality flaws that I choose to ignore.

76-85: A lovely tea, maybe of high quality or masterful blending, but not one I’m likely to order again.

70-75: Enjoyable, but I may have few minor problems with quality, consistency, ingredient chemistry and/or personal preferences.

50-69: Quality, consistency, blending, or personal preference problems are apparent, but I wouldn’t pass up a cup.

11-49: Varying levels of undrinkable tea. I don’t give a lot of these ratings out, since I tend to grab teas I know will appeal to me.

1-10: Nightmare tea from the chaos realms. This is last year’s low-grade bancha mixed with rancid coconut, stale cocoa nibs, over-enthusiastic hibiscus, and stevia sweetener. I’m pretty sure it doesn’t exist.

Location

BC, Lower Mainland

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