drank Bai Lin Kung Fu by Shang Tea
215 tasting notes

I used a bit higher tea-to-water ratio, all 3.5gm of the sample to 6oz water, in an yixing clay pot, and steeped it 5 times … 2, 3, 5, 8, 12 min. While the overweening aroma and taste I got was toasted grain, there was a significant herbaceous component which was hard to define … something like lightly steamed green beans (or green tea?) with a tiny citrus note. While another reviewer reported slight bitterness with no astringency, my take was the opposite … slightly astringent with no bitterness. There was a slight floral note in the first steep or two, but I didn’t identify the fruit and caramel which others have found in this tea. Even at a 12-min steep, it didn’t get bitter. I got a quart of tea from 3.5 grams, and think it would make a refreshing iced tea, especially if you could just steep it for a half hour one time, or overnight. I drank it hot, over an afternoon, with crunchy granola bars. The herbal notes were the most interesting part. A tea I will gladly drink, but not seek out.

205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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Note: I’m open to offers to swap tea samples. If you can’t message me, just comment on one of my tea notes, and I’ll respond.

I am fascinated and deeply impressed by the artistry and skill which coaxes such an array of qualities from one species of leaf. In 2009, I founded San Antonio Tea & Herb Enthusiasts. In 2014, a move to Southern California creates both upheaval and new horizons. The best part is that now I live quite close to my son and his family.

For intimate tastings with a small gathering, I’m practicing Asian-style tea service along the lines of Chinese gongfu cha. It is a joy to share good tea!

The most recent sign of my conversion to the deeply-steeped side: I’ve turned three large file boxes into “tea humidors” for aging pu-erh cakes and bricks at 65% humidity. Remote sensors within the “pumidors” relay the temperature and humidity readings to a base station on my desk. It satisfies my scientist aspect and keeps tea pretty well, too.


Southern California, USA



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