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This is my second tea from this spring’s Floating Leaves purchase. It took a great amount of willpower not to cut open all my vacuum-sealed bags at once, but it’s worth it to have fresh tea for the next few months. Alishan typically isn’t a favourite of mine, though I’ve had some really good ones. The Alishan from FLT is generally good but not amazing. If I’d waited until the Taiwan site had posted a few more teas, I might have bought something else (I took a gamble on the free Shan Lin Xi, which I’ve reviewed here). I steeped 6 g of leaf in a 120 ml porcelain teapot using boiling water for 25, 20, 25, 30, 30, 30, 45, 60, 90, 120, and 240 seconds.

The dry aroma is of cookies, orchids, honeysuckle, gardenias, and grass. The session starts off with butter, cream corn, cookies, orchid, honeysuckle, spinach, and gardenia, and the Alishan is floral, woodsy, and quite sweet. The second steep adds sweet pea flowers, broccoli, and an herbaceous note I don’t often find in Alishans. The aftertaste is vegetal. Hints of citrus, orange blossom, and apricot appear in steep three, as the grassy and vegetal notes increase. The fruit persists in steeps four and five, though the florals once again predominate with the vegetal and woodsy notes. The heavier florals are still going strong in the next few steeps, particularly orchid, honeysuckle, and orange blossom. The tea remains floral until the end of the session, though the grassy and vegetal notes are more noticeable.

This Alishan has a nice range of florals and some interesting flavours that evolve throughout the session. I’d say it’s on par with other Alishans I’ve had from Floating Leaves. The aromas and flavours I get from this tea also complement the summery smells of flowers and cut grass coming through my window, making it a beautiful accompaniment to the day.

Flavors: Apricot, Broccoli, Butter, Citrus, Cookie, Corn Husk, Floral, Gardenias, Grass, Herbaceous, Honeysuckle, Orange Blossom, Orchid, Spinach, Sweet, Vegetal

Preparation
Boiling 6 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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Since I discovered Teavana’s Monkey Picked Oolong four years ago, I’ve been fascinated by loose-leaf tea. I’m glad to say that my oolong tastes have evolved, and that I now like nearly every tea that comes from Taiwan, oolong or not, particularly the bug-bitten varieties. I also find myself drinking Yunnan blacks and Darjeelings from time to time, as well as a few other curiosities.

However, while online reviews might make me feel like an expert, I know that I still have some work to do to actually pick up those flavours myself. I hope that by making me describe what I’m tasting, Steepster can improve my appreciation of teas I already enjoy and make me more open to new possibilities (maybe even puerh!).

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