Swap tea with ashmanra. Thank you :) Keeping my white tea theme rolling now that it’s in the mid-80s here.

The packet was 5g and since I wanted to see how this tea made out gongfu and western, I split it in half: 2.5g for a 60mL gaiwan and 2.5g for a 6oz cup. The dry leaf struck me as strange; it smelled mostly of a jasmine-scented tea, not a typical light floral aroma. I wonder if there was either some product mislabelling or some cross-contam prior to packaging because the packet was sealed tightly. There were also notes of some other flower, hay and a mustiness which is common to Chinese silver needle white teas. The aroma of the rinsed leaf was musty with wet hay and florals and a pungent note much like tea tree oil. I drank the rinse. The tea is difficult to describe. Cantaloupe-ish, lemon sweet-tart, musty, dusty, retronasal florals. Aftertaste was pleasant though short-lived. It took a while to come to me, but I figured it reminded me of a buttery croissant and lychee.

Some other notes that appeared in the gongfu session were nectar, another pungent herbal quality reminiscent of sage, semi-sweet sake, minerals. The liquor aroma became very pronounced with musty jasmine. Tongue-numbing in a way I found unpleasant. The body was thin and watery. Aftertaste moved to oats and cream. By the fourth steep, the liquor lost flavor and grew very drying despite using water near the recommended temp (of note: I believe it was ~165F on my packet vs the 176F in the current product description).

One steep western of 5 minutes was less impressive. Watery-brothy, musty and tart with a strong jasmine finish.

I found this to be more of a musty, savory and herbal silver needle white than the sweeter and fruitier ones that I prefer. As it is, I’d put this tea’s rating somewhere in the 40s to 50s due to several elements that turned me off and possible mislabelling or pre-packaging cross-contam with a jasmine silver needle. However, I don’t know the age of the leaf so I’m leaving it unrated.

Flavors: Baked Bread, Butter, Cantaloupe, Cream, Drying, Dust, Floral, Hay, Herbs, Jasmine, Lemon, Mineral, Musty, Nectar, Oats, Sage, Sake, Tart

165 °F / 73 °C

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Most enjoyment:

Wuyi and Taiwanese oolong, sheng and shou puerh, Yunnan and Wuyi blacks, Laoshan green. I also appreciate Japanese, Vietnamese, Thai, Darjeeling and Nepali teas, bagged tea and herbal teas/tisanes.

I take my teas without milks or sweeteners except sometimes chai and the rare London Fog or matcha latte. I generally steep a tea until it has no more to give.

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. And no added sugars, sweeteners, candy or chocolate.

Preference reference:

100-90: A tea I can lose myself into. Something about it makes me slow down and appreciate not only the tea but all of life or a moment in time. If it’s a bagged or herbal tea, it’s of standout quality in comparison to similar items.
89-80: Fits my profile well enough to buy again.
79-70: Not a preferred tea. I might buy more or try a different harvest. Would gladly have a cup if offered.
69-60: Not necessarily a bad tea but one that I won’t buy again. Would have a cup if offered.
59-1: Lacking several elements, strangely clunky, possess off flavors/aroma/texture or something about it makes me not want to finish.
Unrated: Haven’t made up my mind or some other reason. If it’s puerh, I likely think it needs more age.


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