2007 YQH Jin cha

7.1g, Brita filtered tap, 212f, 100 mL gaiwan

dry leaf: dark herbal, slight mustiness

1x 10s rinse

wet leaf: barest hint of smoke, aged sheng dried fruits

5s: stronger smoke and woody aroma in wet leaf. bitter initially with hint of mushroom. Bitter in that medicinal sort of way. Aftertaste is crisp and floral immediately, almost perfumey, before shifting to something seemingly like either mint or kale (in that dry leafy green sort of way)

7s: very strong bitterness vs. previous cup, leaving tongue slightly dry before floral aspect moves in and quickly shifts to an arugula/kale like edge. the floral edge is really quite pleasant. I can’t stand the later steeps of oolongs that start to obtain the soapy florals, but this is that intense floral without the soapiness. aftertaste is concentrated in the front of mouth, but slight in throat/back of mouth. If you’ve smelled Diptyque’s Do Son before, this floral reminds me of that in some way lol.

9s: more subdued bitterness. upfront taste is lighter. Aftertaste is lacking. Not much in the way of florals, only a light mint/vegetal edge that quickly disappears. Nothing lingers like before.

12s: Bitterness w/ just a slight sweet edge, almost a honeyed floral. Slight floral reappears, and disappears almost as quick in aftertaste. mouth drying is rather disappointing and unpleasant when not accompanied by the previous burst of florals.

23s: a mellowed honey before a light bitterness appears and disappears almost immediately. I can’t remember ever having a tea that went from 100 to 0 so quickly

30s: same as before, but even lighter

40s: same as before, but less honey, more bitter

1 min: the same boring light sweet w/ barest hint of bitter. I’m sure there’s more interesting bagged tea out there. Capping this session for the thermos, and probably won’t update. I wouldn’t bet on this becoming anything interesting.

No real qi to speak of, which I thought might’ve been due to water, but same as AllanK’s review below seems to confirm that. I had this on an empty stomach, and I’m shaking as I’m typing this, so the caffeine is definitely there.

I know this is basically the cheapest tea in Yang’s lineup, but wow is this disappointing overall. I’ve never been so impressed by something as early as steep 2 (post-rinse) to being as disappointed by the remainder. AllanK’s review seems to suggest longevity, but I might as well have stopped by steep 3 from this session. This was a single session purchase for me, and I doubt I’ll order more. I suspect this might lend itself to grandpa style brewing better, so it’s more consistent overall. Steep 2 was incredibly impressive to me, which is what makes this overall so disappointing. Like the brilliance of fireworks, and then poof, gone. If JHCW felt like a musical composition, this is a magic trick, and then everything disappears. If this review sounds dramatic, I promise it’s because the tea was too. what in the world?

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Just a chronicle of a stranger’s tea journey. Trying to learn!!

As of 4/21/21, I will no longer assign numerical ratings to a tea unless it is terrible enough to warrant one. There are a fair amount of solid teas out there, and reading mildly subjective reviews from others > very subjective numerical rating that gets skewed by Steepster’s calculating system anyway.



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