Unusual, indeed! Thank you to Russel Allyn and Harney and Sons for this sample!
I started out with good intentions. I was going to break my sample in half and make some for me tonight and save the rest for my friend tomorrow. Boy, is she going to disappointed! Heh heh, she didn’t know about this one so we just won’t say, shall we?
I couldn’t break this in half. It was as hard as a brick! I gave up and tossed the whole chunk in my pot. I did a very quick rinse since it was hard, but perhaps it should have been longer because when stabbed the chunk with a spoon during steeping it still didn’t want to break up! But the aroma was very intriguing!
I know it isn’t a puerh, and isn’t supposed to have the earthiness of one, but there was something earthy about this to me. The liquor is golden with a brown tinge. There are tiny specks of leaf in my teacup, which I find beautiful and artful, like a sprinkling of parsley In a white sauce, or ground pepper on top of potatoes. We eat – and drink – with our eyes first!
The taste is smooth, with a little tiny tingle of astringency. No, this definitely isn’t tasting like a puerh. This is smokey! And after the second steep the leaves have a tiny hint of coffee aroma! The liquor has a coffee taste as well, but light and fruity at the same time. This is most unusual.
Looking in my little pot, I see that the clump has broken up and my pot is FULL of leaves. I decide that the third steep will be extra short so as not to become bitter. There is a definite learning curve with this one.
Steep three now tastes like a sheng! With a drop of coffee in! My friend need not worry. I am going to stop here for the night, and we will be drinking this tomorrow, probably quite a few more steeps from the looks of things.
This tea is all I hoped it would be…different, unusual, a new experience, and worthwhile!
Thank you, Russel and Harney and Sons!