Well, these last couple days have sucked. The neck injury is finally starting to heal, but I have been dealing with the return of spring sinus problems and a work schedule that has become totally insane. I have been running on only 8 1/2 hours of sleep for the last 48 hours, and to be honest, this feels like the only time I have had to sit down and do something for myself in like the last three days. I haven’t been drinking much tea lately due to the lack of time and sinus issues, so I figured I may as well get another of my backlogged reviews posted. I do not remember precisely when I finished what I had of this tea. I want to say it was somewhere around the third week of April, but I cannot be sure at this point. I know I liked this one a lot more than expected. Jade Tieguanyin does not exactly thrill me all that much these days, but this one was highly enjoyable.
I prepared this tea gongfu style. After a brief rinse, I steeped 6 grams of loose tea leaves in a 4 ounce gaiwan filled with 208 F water for 10 seconds. This infusion was followed by 13 additional infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 12 seconds, 15 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, and 5 minutes.
The dry tea leaves produced pleasant aromas of lilac, honeysuckle, cream, sweetgrass, and watercress prior to the rinse. After the rinse, I found new aromas of vanilla, violet, and saffron. The first infusion brought out a touch of custard on the nose. The tea liquor offered notes of sweetgrass and watercress on the entry before revealing notes of cream, vanilla, lilac, and saffron. A hint of violet then showed up on the swallow. Subsequent infusions saw the nose turn more savory and vegetal. Custard and honeysuckle belatedly came out in the mouth, while stronger violet notes emerged alongside mineral, orange zest, coriander, butter, pea, pear, and parsley impressions. The final infusions offered lingering mineral, cream, butter, sweetgrass, and pear notes backed by vague, ghostly traces of lilac and violet.
This was not the most complex jade Tieguanyin I have ever tried, but it was one of the most drinkable and pleasant. Teavivre normally does a good job sourcing teas of this type, but this was most certainly a step up from several of their other Tieguanyins in terms of quality. A very good tea for beginners and experienced drinkers alike, I would recommend that any fan of jade Tieguanyin give this one a shot.
Flavors: Butter, Coriander, Cream, Floral, Grass, Honeysuckle, Mineral, Orange Zest, Parsley, Pear, Peas, Saffron, Vanilla, Vegetal, Violet