144 Tasting Notes

I almost never choose to brew a flavored tea for myself but when my sister wanted tea I took the opportunity to try this one. I am once again impressed by the blending prowess of this tea distributer.

My favorite aspect has to be the wet leaf aroma which carries the scent of flowered and candied orange peel beautifully and has a soft caramel sweetness that takes the edge off of the citrus high notes. The tea tastes like a designer creamsicle. The choice to use oolong in the blend is very wise as it adds subtlety behind the quite obvious fruit and flower notes and softens the profile considerably.

It’s hard for me to “review” flavored tea because it really comes down to: Does it taste like what it says? Is it good? TeaGschwendner has always knocked it out of the park when it comes to creative blends so the answers are: Yes and yes.

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High Mountain awesome. Delicate, creamy and floral with a looooong hui gan of peaches and cream. All of the typical “greener style” oolong flavors are there but with an element of refinement as the wet leaf aroma comes through sweet and precise. The liquor is refreshingly bright and smooth that is balanced by a perfectly weighty mouthfeel and the tartness at the end unfurls slowly into the aforementioned sweet hui gan. High marks for this one.


I don’t know what a sweet hui gan is but I agree with everything else you said. I like way the flavor rolls around and the bursts of flavor end in that tartness as well.


hui gan (or huay gan) is the flavor of the air that returns from your throat after you have swallowed the tea. kind of like an aftertaste but it does not necessarily originate in the mouth. good teas have impressive hui gan. ive found that sometimes the flavor of the hui gan is reminiscent of the wet aroma of the tea. comes full circle, in a way.


hui gan (or huay gan) is the flavor of the air that returns from your throat after you have swallowed the tea. kind of like an aftertaste but it does not necessarily originate in the mouth. good teas have impressive hui gan. ive found that sometimes the flavor of the hui gan is reminiscent of the wet aroma of the tea. comes full circle, in a way.

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A very down-to-earth looking and tasting tea. This tea tastes like it came from a more tropical estate with a surprising beefiness and heavy mouthfeel not found in many white teas. It also tastes like it wants to be processed into a red tea. Thankfully, we are treated to the unique visual in the dry leaf.

When brewing this tea one has a lot of control over the strength and flavor profile. Obviously, it gets stronger the longer it steeps but I’ve found that shorter steep times provide subtle nuances that are overpowered by the distinct, yet still pleasant, taste of prototypical “tea” in stronger brews. There is, however, a hidden richness in even light brews. One can almost taste the humidity of the air and richness of the soil in which it was grown. Not delicate but nuanced. Very versatile and interesting.

Also, I almost NEVER add anything to my tea but, for some reason, this one seems to beckon for a little honey. It’s great for people who are brandy new to the loose leaf business because it’s very pretty to look at and won’t taste outlandish to them. It is complex enough to pique interest and can be brewed to taste.

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Creamy and substantial, pushing into a sweet milkiness spiked with a heavy “green” taste that anchors the liquor and keeps it from floating off into marshmallow land. The leaves unfurl wonderfully and appear thick and healthy. Good for quite a few infusions.

Very clean and rich, a good everyday “greener” style oolong that teeters on the sweet side.


Wow, cf, you been drinking a lotta different teas in the past few hours! Thanks for the reports.


Ha! Actually, I’m just logging them all at once. I honestly haven’t felt like writing anything down until now. My pleasure!

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This one opens up really sweet with candied yams, a hint of creamed spinach and a fresh ocean breeze. There is a deep and lasting vegetal taste that somehow attains a childlike playfulness throughout and is not gassy at all. Kind of like shiso and sugar. There are floral underpinnings and a dusting of cinnamon on the finish.

The thick mouthfeel and sweet, sweet base translates into a contrastingly bright and fruity hui gan like eating a cold white peach on a hot summer day.

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drank Silver Needle by thepuriTea
144 tasting notes

Nice. Dry florals, a light buttery taste and relatively heavy mouthfeel comprise the body of this tea. Unfortunately, It is slightly astringent (not bitter) and there is that faint taste of hay that I’m not really fond of. However, the hui gan really delivers as the florals return and trail off into a pleasant sweetness reminiscent of high quality honey.

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The aroma is a delicious must of an ancient basement carved out of rough earth and sanctified with old incense. There is a warm monkish simplicity to the liquor and a civilized sweetness that belies the wild nature of the leaf.

This is an excellent everyday aged sheng especially for the price.

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I’m not gong to lie, I was expecting something quite different than what appears in the cup. Maybe it was the lofty title or maybe the fantastic tradition behind the processing that caused me to have a delusion of grandeur toward this tea. Please don’t get me wrong, it is by no means a bad or even average tea. It’s just not what I expected, that’s all. That’s probably my fault.

Anyway, it is very reminiscent of a mild cooked puerh or aged sheng. The mouthfeel is very smooth and the flavor profile is mild, earthy and warm. It slides in nicely with some of the better dark puerh I’ve had, in fact after the third steep I blended it with some near spent Menghai Orange-in-Orange and the result is affirming to the quality of both teas.

And as an update I’ve found a very interesting dimension to the flavor profile of this tea. Underneath the aforementioned similarity to better puerh is the thick and earthy tone of grilled mushroom. Portabella, to be exact. It adds a meatiness to the liquor and more depth than I had realized. As the seller notes, a dedicated Yixing pot would most likely coax the best possible flavors out of the brew. This, more so than any other tea I’ve had, would seem to benefit most from such nurturing because the best flavors to be found in this tea are also the most subtle. An Yixing would enable the flavors to compound and concentrate wonderfully, I’m sure, though I wouldn’t go so far as to derive notions of immortality from them.

There is only one path to perfect eternity, my friends.

; )

His name is Jesus!

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Yeah. The aroma has a goji berry tartness and the decadent sweetness of a strawberry and rhubarb preserve. At first I am met with the sweetness of dark honey and clove but there is a subtle flavor of sugar cane and a definite flat fruitedness I can only describe a tasting like persimmon. The hui gan of flaky fruit pastry and a subtle hint of mild curry powder is sweet and complex.

As I progress through the gongfu session, the structure of the tea is revealed and the dryness of good bourbon comes out to match the color of the liquor. There is revealed an underlying flavor of sweet tobacco and rich spice pushing the fruit flavors into a withered and warm mulled cider.

200 °F / 93 °C

I just tried this. Wow. Your description surpasses anything I’m capable of. I would just add, however, the agedness of this: nothing like the forest floor of puerh, but still an earthy, spicy. oldness.


So, CF, which pot did you use? I first tried this in my Yancha pot, then tried again in one reserved for lighter rolled oolongs (Anxi and such) and I preferred the latter. I don’t think one should knock off too many high notes from this one. But it’s so different from anything I’ve had.


hey, thanks for commenting! this tea is easy to love, im glad you enjoy it. i honestly forget where i picked this nugget of info up but i read somewhere (not on the the seller’s site – it was some blog post) that this particular tea has not been re-roasted like a lot of aged tea and is an example of proper ageing. that’s all well and good but it has the taste to back it up. that quality “oldness”.

im going to make a confession: i don’t own an Yixing pot. i use an ash glazed gai for all tea except darker puer (unglazed clay gai) and some indian red teas/flavored teas (tetsubin). yeah, its not ideal but i haven’t gotten into the art of teapot matching. im only now distilling which teas i really like (i mean REALLY like) from the myriad i’ve tried. this is one of them :-)

this one is interesting because it doesn’t have the character of yan cha. it is a roasted Taiwan tea from Dong Ding mountain so the pot you chose would be the more appropriate choice but it really is in a class belonging to roasted Taiwan tea.


I had the aged dong ding again tonight and it’s becoming a favorite. It’s really interesting what you said about “proper aging.” I’m buying that argument! Also, totally in agreement about the overemphasis on pots. Though I admit I really enjoy my pots, I find that my rather ordinary gaiwans are what I go to when things get serious. Like now. Thanks again CF.


Dont get me wrong . . . I want a Yixing pot one day. Also I dont trust myself with the high end eggshell porcelain gaiwans because I know I will break it. I once had a set of six double glass insulated teacups and they are all broken. So for now at least, the hardier the piece the better I guess.

You should try the 1988 Taiwan tea (unroasted) from Cloudwalker. Like the Dong Ding it is a great value.

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Picked up a sizable sample chunk and got right to it. The compressed dry leaf is unusually attractive in its appearance and immediately smells like it’s going to be a good puerh. Word. The warmed wet leaf aroma is complex and pleasant with no in-your-face mustiness. Moist tree bark, cocoa powder, a subtle hint of smoked paprika and sweet soil.

The liquor is stiff and dry on the palate and not bitter at all. Very woody and full like chewing on a lightly roasted coffee bean, again, without the bitterness. There is a soft talc flavor on the edges that gives roundness and the hui gan is a satisfying dark, dark chocolate. An obscured sweetness blushes the otherwise austere experience into a generous though still serious warmth.

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