Here is a review I have been sitting on for several weeks now. After I finished a sample pouch of this tea, I decided to hold off on posting a review here because I was not entirely sure where I was going to go with the numerical score. Part of that uncertainty was undoubtedly due to the fact that Korean teas are entirely new to me. As of today, this is still the only Korean tea I have tried, thus I have nothing to which I can compare it. For what it is worth, I found this to be a very pleasant, soothing green tea.
Now that I have admitted that this was my first Korean tea of any sort, allow me to also state that I knew absolutely nothing about traditional Korean tea preparation at the time I tried this tea. I still know nothing about this subject. In terms of preparation, I used the brewing method outlined on the pouch by Alistair and expanded on it. I started off with a quick rinse and then steeped 3 grams of loose tea leaves in approximately 8 ounces of 158 F water for 30 seconds. This infusion was chased by 45 second, 1 minute 15 second, 2 minute, and 3 minute infusions. I used the same water temperature for each infusion.
Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves emitted aromas of toasted corn, hay, and grass. After the rinse, I started to pick up on an emerging scent of seaweed. The first proper infusion brought out a slightly stronger seaweed aroma on the nose. In the mouth, I picked up on delicate notes of grass, hay, toasted corn, and seaweed. I noted hints of malt, cream, and spinach lurking in the background. The second infusion brought out stronger aromas of toasted corn and grass on the nose. In the mouth, the notes of hay, grass, and toasted corn were significantly stronger. The underlying hints of malt, cream, and spinach were still there, though they were now joined by touches of straw, oats, barley, and lettuce. There was also something of an almost honey-like sweetness that lingered in the mouth after the swallow. The liquor produced by the third infusion was very light on the nose. In the mouth, the flavors became substantially more muted and the mouthfeel of the tea liquor was much creamier. A hint of minerality started to emerge. On the fourth infusion, the nose was quite weak and mineral scents were starting to become apparent. Notes of seaweed, minerals, and grass were stronger in the mouth on this infusion. Occasional hints of toasted corn, oats, and barley could still be found. The fifth and final infusion displayed a very neutral nose and mostly offered vague impressions of grass, minerals, and seaweed in the mouth.
I would not call this a particularly deep or complex tea, but it was still very enjoyable. To be fair, I ordered this tea on a whim not knowing anything about it or Korean teas in general and then tried it without doing any serious research pertaining to Korean brewing methods, so I doubt I did right by it in terms of preparation. Hopefully I did not bungle it too much. All in all, I thought this was a very nice green tea, but as this tea served as my introduction to the world of Korean teas, you should definitely take my review with a mountain of salt and seek out the opinions of others who have more experience with teas like this one.
Flavors: Cream, Grain, Grass, Hay, Lettuce, Malt, Mineral, Oats, Seaweed, Spinach, Straw, Sweet, Toasted