85

I am glad other reviewers had such a positive experience with this tea. Personally, of the four shu I have tried from Mandala thus far (this one, Noble Mark 2011, Phatty Cake II 2013, and Temple Stairs 2014), Temple Stairs is hands down my favorite and one I would want to have on hand for its depth and complexity. This Rama Lama Bulang would rank last among those four for me. This is primarily due to what I tasted as a definite upfront bitter burntness and initial funk that hung around for a few steeps. It does mellow out soon enough, and there is some nice smooth texture. There is more to its flavor profile than I can competently describe, so I would say this tea remains somehwhat of a mystery to me, and I would point readers to the other very positive reviews of this tea. The material itself is small, and it brews fast. My reccommendations would be: air it out for a few weeks first, rinse it three times, and flash steep it for a few rounds until it mellows out. This was a free sample from Mandala, thanks!

Preparation
5 g 3 OZ / 75 ML
Garret

I cannot remember if you got a sample of the cake or of the loose leaf version of this. They are subtly different at this point. This tea has been really popular here and we have several of our coffeehouse clients brewing this in their mix of teas. Most of them are brewing it at 208, no rinse, Western-style and having very good results. We enjoy it often here in the office. I really appreciate you writing up your experience. You do very well with that.

Grateful,
Garret

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Garret

I cannot remember if you got a sample of the cake or of the loose leaf version of this. They are subtly different at this point. This tea has been really popular here and we have several of our coffeehouse clients brewing this in their mix of teas. Most of them are brewing it at 208, no rinse, Western-style and having very good results. We enjoy it often here in the office. I really appreciate you writing up your experience. You do very well with that.

Grateful,
Garret

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Ratings:

I am new to tasting, so I am adjusting my ratings of each tea to accommodate my new experiences and learning.

But overall this is my logic:

95+ are teas I want to have on hand and buy again. I am willing to save my money for them (within reason) and measure out every last 10th of a gram.

90-94 are teas that I highly praise and recommend, but they are not ones that I prioritize to buy again and have on hand.

80-89 are teas that I am thankful for trying, but I would rather save my money if necessary to buy a 95+ tea.

If I do not rate a tea, it means I feel bad about giving a score of 79 or less and would prefer the community and experts weigh in with their math.

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