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drank Bai Mu Dan 2007 by Nannuoshan
77 tasting notes

First white tea for me that had significant age to it.

There was an intriguing sweetness to it that was hard to pin down. It was sort of like coconut or carob, where the sweetness is balanced by a sort of woody/stem-y note.

Definitely a departure from a fresh white tea. Much richer base sweetness and much more complexity.
*
Dry leaf – honeysuckle, blackberry syrup, carob, sweet floral

Smell – cherry wood, coconut, marshmallow, blackberry syrup, fruit leaf (? – I don’t know, just sort of a fruit-sweet mixed with leafiness…)

Taste – coconut, carob, dark chocolate cherry cordial are predominant. Base flavors of English breakfast tea, some hints of tea with lemon juice.

Liquid Proust

I thought this said it tasted like crab. I need tea.

apefuzz

Ha! Well, I have had some teas with a pretty serious marine quality to them…

tperez

Mmm, I really liked that one

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85
drank Qing Xin oolong by Nannuoshan
18 tasting notes

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Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 3 OZ / 100 ML

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98
drank Jun Shan Yin Zhen by Nannuoshan
18 tasting notes

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Flavors: Honey, Vanilla

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 45 sec 3 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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75
drank Hong Qing by Nannuoshan
18 tasting notes

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Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 4 min, 0 sec 3 g 10 OZ / 300 ML

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90

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Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 300 OZ / 8872 ML

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81
drank Lu'an gua pian by Nannuoshan
18 tasting notes

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Flavors: Iodine, Vegetables

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 4 min, 15 sec 3 g 10 OZ / 300 ML

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83

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Flavors: Chestnut

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 4 min, 0 sec 3 g 10 OZ / 300 ML

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81

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Flavors: Flowers, Lychee, Nectar, Orchids, Sweet

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 45 sec 2 tsp 4 OZ / 120 ML

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81
drank Da Hong Pao by Nannuoshan
84 tasting notes

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Flavors: Char, Mineral

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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86
drank Bi Luo Chun Qing Ming by Nannuoshan
8556 tasting notes

noms. GCTTB this is delicious! I don’t love green teas all the time, but there are a few out there who make me want to keep a couple in my cupboard. This is one of those. It’s fruity and sweet, with an almost nutty flavour profile in the background? almost? it’s not super vegetal but being a green tea, there’s some of that. mostly though, it’s sweet and delicious.

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100

I received a sample of this, quite some time ago, from Gabriele at NanNuoShan, and I finally got around to drinking it! Though I’m sad that I waited this long, so the sample was probably a little old, the tea was still rather delicious!

Across the 6 or 7 (I think :S ) steeps that I did, this tea was consistently lovely – a thick-ish smooth texture, with delicious honey notes throughout. I think there were floral notes near the beginning and some more spiced notes (kinda woody and sweet spiced) near the end.

Flavors: Honey

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 0 min, 30 sec
Fjellrev

6 or 7 steeps! Impressive.

Red Fennekin

Heh – it really did stay nice and tasty throughout, too!

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76
drank Jin Si Dian Hong by Nannuoshan
2313 tasting notes

Thanks again, Nicole! The first time I tried this, the flavor was a little light. I don’t remember how much I steeped up. I didn’t want to write a tasting note last time as I thought my parameters could be improved. They were. Two teaspoons is right for a mug. The flavor is still smooth, but not characterless. This time around, it’s like mildly smoky milk chocolate. Very peppery, so it reminds me of some Yunnans that tend to be peppery. The leaves look like some of them as well. Sickle shaped fuzzies both dark and gold. The steeped leaves are actually very fruity scented somehow. This isn’t my favorite of this type of tea (not enough of a kick in flavor for me) but these steeps were vastly improved since last time.
Steep #1 // 2 tsps. // 10 minutes after boiling // 2 1/2 minute steep
Steep #2 // just boiled // 3 1/2 min

You all get a lucky break from my tasting notes, as I’m having computer troubles. You’re welcome. :D

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75
drank Anji Bai Cha by Nannuoshan
1755 tasting notes

I’m drinking the last of my sample of this one at the moment, and I’d forgotten how lovely it is! It’s such a light, delicate green tea – perfect for people like me who spend a fair amount of their time thinking that they don’t even LIKE green tea. This is clearly not true – I’ve discovered a lot of green teas that are perfectly palatable, and some (like this one) I’ve really enjoyed. This one verges on sweet, to my tastes, and reminds me of sugar snap peas. There’s a more savoury element underlying, which really helps to give it some depth. It’s kind of vegetal and green beany. Totally yum. Another thing I enjoy about this one is its sheer smoothness – it really is almost buttery in terms of mouthfeel. I’ll miss this one now that it’s gone from my cupboard, and it’s one I’d purchase for myself if I ever get to the stage when my cupboard is under control enough for me to have “staple” teas of any kind. Until then, this can be a delicious memory.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 30 sec
Red Fennekin

Teas like this (with that smooth, sugar-snap pea flavour and texture) are amongst my favourites too! They really are so delicious.

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75
drank Anji Bai Cha by Nannuoshan
1755 tasting notes

I’m more open minded about green teas these days, after discovering that there are some I actually like (and some I even love!) That they’re not all bitter, astringent and brown came as a bit of a revelation to me. This one is a stunner just to look at.

Read my full review here: http://sororiteasisters.com/2015/09/14/anji-bai-cha-green-tea-nannuoshan/

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 30 sec 1 tsp

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91
drank Qi Lan by Nannuoshan
299 tasting notes

From the Here’s Hoping TTB:

(60s): Beautiful floral/citrus bouquet. Magnificant rich flavor mixes honey with the aroma components and an undercurrent of sweetness. Long, luscious finish. I love this tea. For some reason the tea got less interesting later in the cup. Still good but no longer great. I started thinking of a score like 97 but wound up with 91. I’m feeling a buzz from cha qi. A first for oolong. I tried gong-fu (30s, 3 oz) and a normal second steep. In both cases the aroma was great but the taste was “just” very good. Still feeling the qi.
Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 1 min, 0 sec 3 g 6 OZ / 177 ML

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83
drank Yin Zhen by Nannuoshan
199 tasting notes

This tea is nice, light, and fresh. A wonderful brew of mild grain/grass with a honey sweetness. Definitely a good white tea, holding up to a high temp with a longer steep (accidentally).

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75
drank Dian Yin Zhen by Nannuoshan
199 tasting notes

Sweet with notes of pine and flowers. This is a great white tea. I used a gaiwan and the entire sample pack and let it steep in 195 water for about 30 seconds. A very nice and complex flavor.

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Simultaneous taste test with 2 other teas from the GCTTB4

I think this was another one of Ubacat’s teas (seriously, Uba, you’re hitting it out of the park!).

I had this with a Bi Luo Chun from YS, but this one paled in comparison. Literally (it was lighter in colour) and figuratively (it was the weakest of the three teas I tried).

I found that this didn’t make much of an impression on me. Somewhat nutty, somewhat vegetal, but there wasn’t a lot of there there. Steeped 1 tsp for 3 min in 80c water.

Ubacat

This tea smells delicious dry but I’ve tried brewing it so many different ways and feel the same as you. It just seems too weak.

Glad you’re enjoying some of teas I put in the GCTTB4!

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82
drank Xue Ya by Nannuoshan
199 tasting notes

A very pleasant tea with warming qualities. I feel like the taste is more of a green with vegetal notes of cucumber and grass. I brewed this gong fu style for 30/45/60 at 195 degree water. The resulting liquid is relatively light in color, looking much more like a white. This is definitely a tea to wind down with.

Flavors: Cucumber, Vegetal

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 30 sec 3 OZ / 100 ML

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92
drank Tie Guan Yin 1993 by Nannuoshan
894 tasting notes

The dry leaf is dark green, verging on black, and twisty, but not rolled into balls. It smells woody and earthy, with hints of orchid that contrast in a very interesting way.

Steeped, the leaf smells intensely floral and woody. The tea soup is a pale amber colour and very clear. It smells very faintly of honey and wood.

On the first steep, the wood note is dominant, with honey and orchid in the background. I steeped 1g in 50ml of 90C water for 30 seconds, as per the steeping directions, but the flavour seems a bit light. I think this might have benefited from a quick rinse and a bit of a rest, to let the leaves open up a bit more, or just a slightly longer first steep.

The second steep is amazing. Everything about this steep is stronger and deeper, with well balanced notes of wood, roast and honey forefront, backed up by a lovely orchid. The finish is long, with a honeyed, tangy vegetal note that develops long after the sip. The texture is creamy and smooth.

The third steep intrigues me. The steeped leaf has taken on an almost acrid, charred wood note that I find unappealing. But the flavour of the tea is incredible. There is more roastiness and less honey than on the second steep, but toward the end of the sip there is a melted butter and brown sugar taste that contributes to the rich, creamy impression from the mouth feel.

The fourth steep once again seems lighter on flavour than it should be. While the flavours of the third steep are present, they are mild and a bit muddled.

For the fifth steep, I didn’t bother timing precisely and just let the tea sit until it seemed like it was ready. The butter, brown sugar and orchid are back to being more prominent, but at this point the leaves are staring to lose their flavour.

This is an amazing tea that shows its age through the fine and complex flavour. While three of my five steeps were not all that impressive, I was quite blown away by the second and third, and I think it is well worth drinking for those steeps alone (and I think with some tweaking of steeping technique and parameters, at least three incredible steeps could be had.)

I drank this and made my note without looking at anyone else’s impressions, and it’s so interesting to see the variety of different experiences people had with this tea. There’s a great deal of diversity in the flavours that people picked out.

While this may not be an every day kind of tea, it is one that is absolutely worth trying.

30s, 30s, 45s, 45s, 1min+

Sample provided by Nannuoshan.

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Butter, Creamy, Earth, Honey, Orchid, Roasted, Smooth, Tangy, Vegetal, Wood

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 1 g 2 OZ / 50 ML
Liquid Proust

The direction really say 30s? I don’t think I’ve ever seen an oolong with less than a 3 minute advisory.

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drank Ban Tian Yao by Nannuoshan
149 tasting notes

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85
drank Jin Si Dian Hong by Nannuoshan
137 tasting notes

I liked this tea…malty and smoky, but smooth at the same time. I steeped it for 2 minutes, and it seemed to work out well. This tea also had more of an earthy flavor than the other Dian Hong’s I’ve tried. Thanks for the sample, Nicole!

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85

Today I’m sampling Taiping Houkui and Taiping Houkui Superior next to each other. The difference between these two teas is that the regular one is processed partially by machine and the superior is entirely hand processed. There’s also a fairly significant difference in the price, to account for the amount of extra labour that goes into hand processing.

I believe this is my first time having Taiping Houkui.

The dry leaf varies in colour from medium to dark green. While it is quite flat, it is not perfectly flat or uniform. There are some large pieces in my sample, but also quite a few broken bits. The smell is rich, with strong umami and seaweed qualities, and just a touch of roasted character. I am reminded a lot of a good quality sencha. Compared to the standard version, the leaf is less uniform in shape, size and colour. This smells slightly sweeter and richer.

I steeped 1g of leaf in 50ml of 80C water, three times, for 60 , 60 and 90 seconds.

Steeped the leaf smells sweet and umami with no grassiness. The variable sizes of leaf and leaf fragments make for a less visually stunning steeping experience than the standard version.

The soup is pale yellow green, and very clear. It is slightly paler than the standard version. Smell is mild, slightly tangy and vegetal, but present.

The flavour is complex. Notes of seaweed, umami, and nuts, with both sweetness and a vegetal tang. There is a hint of caramel in the cheeks. The flavour is pungent but more delicate than regular. The body is quite light, and one of the most noticeable differences between these teas.

After the first steep these teas diverge quite a lot. The second steep is more bold than first – tangier, more vegetal and pungent. Also sweeter, with more distinct caramel. The finish is nice and tangy. The third steep is less sweet and less tangy than the first two. It has a mellow vegetal, grassy flavour. Toward the end of the sip there’s a bit of roastiness that comes out. Compared to the standard, more umami and nuttiness remain in the third steep.

I feel that if I were so inclined, I feel that I could get another steep out of these.

Both of these are excellent teas. I am reminded in many ways of sencha. While they are very similar at first, and I’m not sure I would notice the difference if I had not had these side by side, the differences show in later steeps. I enjoyed the Superior slightly more, although I’m not sure the difference in the tea is big enough for me to personally justify the price difference. However, supporting the art of handcrafting might be.

Samples provided by Nannuoshan.

Flavors: Caramel, Grass, Nuts, Roasted, Seaweed, Sweet, Tangy, Umami, Vegetal

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 0 sec 1 g 2 OZ / 50 ML

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83
drank Taiping Houkui by Nannuoshan
894 tasting notes

Today I’m sampling Taiping Houkui and Taiping Houkui Superior next to each other. The difference between these two teas is that the regular one is processed partially by machine and the superior is entirely hand processed. There’s also a fairly significant difference in the price, to account for the amount of extra labour that goes into hand processing.

I believe this is my first time having Taiping Houkui.

The dry leaf is beautiful. Large, uniform, very flat and thin, in an intense medium green colour. These leaves are definitely unique and interesting. They smell of seaweed and umami, with just a hint of maple. Compared to the Superior, the smell is less sweet and slightly less refined smelling.

I steeped 1g of leaf in 50ml of 80C water, three times, for 60 , 60 and 90 seconds.

Steeped, the leaf smells nutty and grassy, with lots of umami. The leaf is truly beautiful – the long, flat leaves turn int bright green ribbons in my gaiwan.

The tea soup is a pale yellow green and crystal clear. Smell is very mild, almost non-existent. The faint whiff that I do catch is vegetal.

The first steep is delicious, smooth. The dominant flavours are seaweed, umami, nutty, with a touch of grass. The light colour of the soup belies the pungent, mouth filling flavour this has. The intensity of the flavour fades quickly in the finish, and a milder, tangy edge lingers in the mouth for a while. This has a medium body, one of the most noticeable differences between these teas.

After the first steep these teas diverge quite a lot. The second steep is mellow, nutty and a touch astringent. The umami remains. The third is quite grassy and the sweetness is gone. The astringency builds a little bit, but still remains mild and pleasant.

After three steeps, I believe these leaves are done.

Both teas are excellent. The differences are hard to pick out at first but really come out after the first steep. I enjoyed the Superior slightly more, though if you focus strictly on the experience of the tea, I think this one is a better value. If you factor in the handcrafting, well, I think everyone values that a bit differently in their tea experience.

Samples provided by Nannuoshan.

Flavors: Grass, Maple, Nutty, Seaweed, Sweet, Tangy, Umami, Vegetal

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 0 sec 1 g 2 OZ / 50 ML

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