Winter 2018 harvest.

The weather was finally nice enough to have a tea session outdoor on my patio the other day. This tea was the last of my Tea from Taiwan green oolong samplers and was the perfect tea for the occasion. The fresh air, smell of peonies wafting from my neighbors garden, and surrounding greenery perfectly captured the essence of this tea.

Upon opening the pouch, my nose was greeted with the smell of fresh vegetation, flowers, and apricot. A rinse released sweet, more distinct floral aromas of daffodils, lily, and honeysuckle. The first 5 steeps were delicate yet intensely floral with the aromas coming through nicely in the taste. Silky texture, sweet, and light bodied. As the session wore on, the flowery notes started to dwindle and a pear like fruitiness emerged. The tea became thicker, brighter, and I got some of that great high mountain taste.

I steeped 2g in my 50ml shibo and got 8 excellent infusions out of it. Steep times were 30s/45s/1m/2m/3m/5m/7m/10m. I brewed at around 185 F except for the last few steeps which were at or close to boiling. Even with the longer steep times, it was super smooth with zero astringency.

Flavors: Flowers, Honeysuckle, Orchid, Pear, Sweet

185 °F / 85 °C 0 min, 30 sec 2 g 2 OZ / 50 ML

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My Rating Criteria:

95 to 100: Top shelf stuff. Loved this tea and highly recommend it

90 to 94: Excellent. Enjoyed this tea and would likely repurchase

80 to 89: Good but not great. I liked it though it may be lacking in some aspects. I’ll finish it but probably won’t buy again

70 to 79: Average at best. Not terrible but wouldn’t willingly drink again

60 to 69: Sub-par. Low quality tea, barely palatable

59 and below: Bleh

Fell into tea many years ago and for a long time my experience was limited to Japanese greens and flavored Teavana teas. My tea epiphany happened when I discovered jade oolongs. That was my gateway drug to the world of high quality tea and teaware.

For the most part, I drink straight tea but do appreciate a good flavored tea on occasion. I love fresh green and floral flavors and as such, green tea and Taiwanese oolongs will always have a place in my cupboard. After avoiding black tea forever, Chinese blacks have started to grow on me. I’m less enthusiastic about puerh though. I also enjoy white tea and tisanes but reach for them less frequently.

Other non-tea interests include: cooking, reading, nature, philosophy, MMA, traveling when I can, and of course putzing around on the interwebs.

IG: https://www.instagram.com/melucky


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