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I must say I prefer the winter-picked versions of this tea, but this spring Da Yu Ling is still enjoyable. Dry scent in a hot gaiwan delivers intense cream, subtle eucalyptus notes, and a slightly unpleasant stale water smell. After the first infusion, the wet scent brings out gardenias and very fresh, grassy butter. Medium viscosity but very round on the palate. First infusion is crisp and light, with a nectar sweetness, florals, and fresh cream notes. Cream quickly fades to a sour floral note. One of my favorite parts of Taiwan Tea Crafts’ Da Yu Lings is the color of the leaves – they are the most intensely vibrant shades of green (blue-green, lime-green, and the richest dark green tones I’ve seen in any tea). It’s almost as if the leaves are back-lit in the gaiwan. A surprising tieguanyin fragrance comes through in the second and later infusions. The tea actually tastes like a tieguanyin as well, only with the added tropical notes typical of Taiwanese oolong (especially honeydew melon, tangerines, and a piña colada creamy-fruitiness). As the tea loses its floral top notes in later infusions, marine vegetal notes start to poke through (sencha, matcha, etc.) accompanied by a sugarcane grassy-sweetness. Unfortunately, this tea only lasted four infusions for me (I usually expect Taiwanese oolongs to brew at least six infusions before losing flavor).

Flavors: Butter, Cinnamon, Coconut, Cream, Eucalyptus, Gardenias, Grass, Honeydew, Marine, Nectar, Pineapple, Smooth, Sugarcane

180 °F / 82 °C 0 min, 30 sec 4 g 6 OZ / 175 ML

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