I thought this tea was so nice I made it twice! Although this time I am using a gaiwan and short steeping it. Anyway, moving straight on to the tasting notes:

Sipping from the first steep, the grainy character is very bold. I guess it’s the sort of thing that comes out a lot in the first steep, and since I used more leaves it’s very powerful. The other flavours still quite remind me of Sun Moon Lake black tea, but not 100%.

The second cup definitely smells similar Sun Moon Lake black tea. Drinking the liquor, a tangy/zesty tomato flavour comes out and there is a bitterness similar to biting into tomato seeds.

Third steep was a bit tame, but much like the second steep flavour-wise.

On the fourth steep this tea shifted gears a bit. Now I’m tasting something kinda spicy or peppery, soft malt, and something that almost becomes sweet like cinnamon but doesn’t quite get there. This had less of an edge or power to it than the earlier steeps, but transformed into something with a bit more charm.

The fifth steep was light and refreshing. Overall a much weaker tea but not in a disappointing way.

With the sixth and last steep, what tea flavour remained at this point is sweet with a bit of the grain character. I can’t taste my original water yet, but I think it’s weak enough to stop resteeping.

I liked short steeping this and it sure brought out some nice changes. Following along with today’s theme, I’ll take a break and short steep the oolong-black Sakidori later.

100ml gaiwan, 2 tsp, 6 steeps, (30s + 15s resteeps)

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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Feel free to add me on Steepster, I’ll probably add you back. :)

I don’t log tea every time I drink it. Tasting notes tend to be about either one style of brewing or a new experience. It is helpful for me to look back on my notes and see what a tea tasted like or which steeping parameter worked best for me. I try to mostly short steep tea unless it only tastes better with a long steep. I’d rather experience what a tea tastes like over 3 or 12 steeps than just 1 to 3 long steeps.

When I write “tsp”, the measurement I use is a regular western teaspoon. Not a tea scoop

How I rate tea:

99-100: Teas that blow my mind! An unforgettable experience. Savoured to the last drop. I felt privileged to drink this.

90-98: Extraordinary, highly recommended, try it and you won’t be disappointed (and if you are, mail me the tea!)

85-89: Wonderful, couldn’t expect more but not a favourite.

80-84: Excellent, a treasured experience but not a favourite.

70-79: Good but could be better. Above average.

60-69: Average, unexceptional, not something I would buy again. Slightly disappointed. I’d rather drink water.

50-0: Varying degrees of sadness

No rating: Mixed feelings, can’t decide whether I like it or not, not enough experience with that sort of tea to rate it. A dramatic change of heart.


Ontario, Canada

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