I received 50 g of fresh spring 2023 pre-Qingming Bi Luo Chun about a week ago, and got this new-to-me tea as one of my two free samples. This is something I probably never would have tried, so thanks to Teavivre for including it! I steeped around 3 g of leaf in an 85 ml teapot at 176F for 20, 25, 35, 50, 80, 120, and 240 seconds, plus some uncounted steeps. I also steeped the remaining 2 g in around 250 ml of 176F water for 5 minutes, topping up the water as needed.

The dry aroma of these flat, almost uniform leaves is of chestnuts, seaweed, and grass. The first steep has notes of chestnuts, green beans, asparagus, butter, umami, and grass. The next steep adds notes of orange peel and florals, and the tea is slightly drying. The tea is less sweet than Dragonwell and has a starchy quality. The orange disappears in the next couple steeps, and stronger notes of asparagus, chestnut, and green beans emerge. The final steeps are a bit more bitter and add kale and grass to the veggie combo.

Bowl steeped, this tea has notes of chestnut, asparagus, spinach, green pepper, faint florals, seaweed, and grass. There’s some bitterness, but it’s not overwhelming. I get more green beans and grass as the session goes on, and the tea becomes slightly sweeter and more floral. It lasts for several infusions.

This is close to the type of nutty, less abrasive Chinese green tea that I like, though Dragonwell appeals to me a little more because it tends to be sweeter. As usual, bowl steeping provided the more pleasant experience, though the citrus in the gongfu session was a nice surprise. This isn’t something I need to rush out and buy, but I’m glad I got to try it.

Flavors: Asparagus, Butter, Chestnut, Drying, Floral, Grass, Green Beans, Green Pepper, Kale, Orange Zest, Seaweed, Spinach, Sweet, Umami, Vegetal

175 °F / 79 °C 3 g 3 OZ / 85 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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