This deep baked baozhong hits the senses strikingly like a qilan rock oolong, though it exhibits more of the grassy/plant stem/banana leaf greenness of Taiwanese oolongs than a light-roasted Wuyi qilan can offer. Rich milk chocolate and caramel aroma of the dry leaf, with hints of charred wood and dill, yields to the roast and spice bread after warming and rinsing. The strength of the tea lies in its dense and heady chocolate and floral aromatics which are less expressed as pure flavor. There is some alkalinity from the roast in the first few steeps and pleasing astringency throughout. Roasty, floral and mineral sweet with a peach impression. Lingering fragrance in the mouth and light yet long banana leaf and sugared peach gummi aftertaste that later hints at buttery osmanthus. Somewhat cooling, alpine feel.

Deeply relaxing tea, so much that I forewent trying the remainder of my sample both western and grandpa. This tea lends itself very well to evening gongfu sessions. Either the caffeine content is low and/or the high, creamy florals lull me into not noticing or caring.

All through this week into my days off on Sunday and Monday, the weather should be cool and cloudy with some rain. This is the perfect spring weather to sample my other baozhong oolong of varying roast levels and to sipdown the last of the pure green stuff I have.

Song pairing: Placebo — Haemoglobin
Shoot, maybe all of the Black Market Music album. One of those nights.

Flavors: Butter, Candy, Caramel, Char, Chocolate, Cocoa, Dill, Dry Grass, Floral, Grain, Grass, Marine, Mineral, Orchid, Osmanthus, Pastries, Peach, Pine, Plant Stems, Roasted, Spices, Sugar, Wood

205 °F / 96 °C 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Martin Bednář

Thank you for Placebo! I listened to few songs again when I saw your tasting note :)


Kings of nostalgia.

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Martin Bednář

Thank you for Placebo! I listened to few songs again when I saw your tasting note :)


Kings of nostalgia.

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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 send international :)

Most enjoyment:

I prefer straight loose-leaf and compressed tea, teabags for ease of use and herbal teas/tisanes. My favorite teas come from all over including China, Taiwan, Nepal, Darjeeling, Thailand, Vietnam, Japan and Georgia. The only one that doesn’t do much for me is Ceylon.

I abandoned my preference reference in early 2020, favoring a focus on qualitative description and because everybody uses a different rating scale. I’m still comfortable toggling the ‘Not/Recommended’ button.

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. Some could be daily drinker teas.
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.

Some things about me:

Endless curiosity and fascination have led me to wear many hats. Stubbornness and naivety have led me down dark paths. The restlessness isn’t improving with age but at least at 37, I’m finally aware of my nature. I have high physical energy and love being around people but am easily exhausted. My most recent caricature is that of an environmental engineering masters dropout working in retail electrical sales. An impatient woman with a knack for making stupid decisions, a lover of Jesus, science, art, beauty and language who happens to ride a motorcycle and bicycle, dabbles in sax, wields a chainsaw and drinks tea out of tiny pots. They call me “Trouble”.


Sonoma County, California, USA

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