What-Cha describes this as “A most unusual tea…” I can’t help but think he’s being cheeky.

I brewed 2 cups of this late last night, thinking “Hey, GABA tea.” Well, it turns out it has the typical caffeine content of Red Jade blacks: feckin HIGH. It was late and I wasn’t doing anything with all that unused energy so I decided to go to bed. I ended up getting a lot of anxiety lying there so I took a few diphenhydramines to knock my ass out. Sipper beware.

Moving on. Finished last night’s brew this morning. Gone western. 1 tsp, 8oz, 195F, 3/4/6/? minutes. ?minutes isn’t worth it. I don’t think I’ll try brewing this tea any method other than western.

April 2017 harvest. Dry nuggets are large and smell really good, like overripe strawberries. After the first steep, the wet leaf had minimal funk but past that was roasted sweet potato and later steeps moved to roasted acorn squash.

First steep produced a cup smelling and tasting of funk but that quickly turned into tang (rhubarb?) and sweet potato. Later steeps saw the funk disappear, the tang lighten, the sweet potato developed a roast and turned into roasted acorn squash both in aroma and taste. Noticed a coolness in the mouth on exhale but no minty taste. The liquor was smooth and developed some slickness and dryness. It started off a beautiful shade of pinkish champagne with a tinge of orange and turned progressively clear orange-brown.

The spent leaf is very large and not in the best shape. One leaf was 7cm wide. Couldn’t help measuring it.

For me, this is a morning tea to have with a big breakfast before going out to chainsaw fire lines all day or a tea to carry cold in a thermos on a long, exhausting hike.

I’m a big fan of Red Jade blacks and whites and would rather stick to those. This is certainly “a most unusual tea.”

195 °F / 90 °C 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Always open to gifting or swapping teas. I do send international when feasible. Please follow and send a message if you see a tea in my notes or cupboard that piques your interest.

Tea became a hobby and my daily drink of choice some time late in the last decade. My introduction to loose leaf came in the form of dumpster-dived Wuyi oolong packets that somebody left upon moving out of an apartment building. From there, my palate expanded to teas from across China and the world. I used to focus more on taste and still harbor the habit, but after trying sheng puer, I tend to focus more on how a tea feels in my body. Does it complement my constitution? Does it change my mood or does it enhance my current mindstate? Flavored teas are not a favorite but I do drink them intermittently.

In terms of who I am, you could consider me a jill of all trades. Specialty is not my strength, as can be seen in the spread of my tea notes. I might have attention issues. One thing I will always love is riding a bicycle.


Sonoma County, California, USA

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