This is my favorite of the 3 Crimson Lotus dragon balls I’ve tried so far. It has a good range in its profile. The rinsed leaf produced aromas of powdered sugar, peach, English peas and yeast. Started off savory, sweet and mineral with some bitterness in the back that lasts throughout the session. Smooth and brothy with a honeyed aftertaste. Then came an herbal addition (definite thyme) and at this point, I picked up watermelon/rind and faint basil on the lid. This was followed by buttery, fruity peach and yeasty notes, then florals and some astringency. Last steep of 7 minutes had a nice tartness. The pure sugar smell in the bottom of the cup and the strong returning sweetness that lasted the whole session were incredible. Honestly, this tea reminded me of a chardonnay in its buttery/yeasty character. The spent leaf was very chopped and tippy. Very high in caffeine, whew. The tastes make it something I want to buy more of but the caffeine would make it a rare indulgence for me.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 OZ / 100 ML

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Always up for a trade – I keep an updated cupboard. Check it out. Don’t be shy. Message me if you want to try something. I like to share, though I don’t keep large amounts of most teas on hand as I’m still in the midst of a years-long exploration phase. I feel that will be winding down later in 2019.

Preference reference:

100-90: Tea love. Will sell my belongings to acquire more. (Want this stocked if I have the space.)
89-80: Will sell somebody else’s belongings to acquire more. (Good enough to buy again.)
79-70: “We should get together and hangout some time.” Let’s cut the bullshit: You’re not worth my time. (Won’t buy more but might try a different harvest.)
69-60: This may be considered passing in education, but deep down you feel like a failure. (Def won’t buy again.)
59-0: Hellnaw!

Most enjoyment: yancha, dianhong, Laoshan green, red oolong, roasted Shanlinxi oolong, citrus blossom scented oolong, some GABA oolong, non-sweet shou pu’er, resinous/fruity/meaty/bitter sheng pu’er. Big fan of medicinal flavors, citrus, thick mouthfeel, minerals and body feels.

I’ll try anything once because it helps me learn. Not opposed to well placed herbs, flowers, fruity bits and flavorings. Just nothing cloying especially banana, caramel, coconut, cinnamon or maple.

Currently working my way into a masters of environmental engineering program. My interests include bicycling, fungi, wetlands, falconry, conservation, creation, destruction, terraforming, spaceflight, the unknown and of course tea. Cook from scratch when I have the time. Reader for life.


San Francisco, California, USA

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