Marcus of ChaCeremony also sent me this to try! Thanks, Marcus!
I did a side-by-side comparison using one other well-known tea vendor’s Shui Xian. I used about 3g of leaf for each, and steeped them 60s/60s/90s.
The ChaCeremony leaf was darker in color, the other vendor’s was more grey. The size of leaf was similar. The color of the rinse water was shockingly different, with ChaCeremony’s tea coming in a lot darker. The color of the liquor was still dramatically different in the first infusion, but became more similar in the second infusion.
The ChaCeremony tea has a nice roasty bite to it, it’s smooth and sweet, and it has a nice complexity. Some teas with good complexity make it feel like multiple flavors are bopping around in your mouth…this tea does that! By comparison, the other vendor’s tea fell flat. Looking at the leaf afterwards, it appears that the other vendor’s tea is not as roasted as the ChaCeremony tea. I guess I know what I prefer! :)