This is a sample tin I have had for a while. I know I’ve had this tea before, and I’m perplexed by the absence of a note on it. So here I go, solving that problem.
I’m going to rinse, then steep this one with short steeps in the gaiwan for this initial note foray. Later I may try it in the yixing.
I am a big green oolong fan. I generally prefer them to the darker ones, though there are always exceptions. This one looks pretty green — the leaves are a jade color rather than a brown. The dry leaves also have that wonderful green oolong floral smell.
Starting with a 15 second steep, this tea makes a light butter yellow liquor that also smells of butter and flowers. This is what makes green oolongs one of my favorites! I wish I was better at discerning floral scents. I want to say it is gardenias I am smelling and tasting here?
The second steep, 20 seconds, if anything, brings these flavors out even more. There is a mild, vegetal undertone in the sip and a nuttiness to the finish. I find myself agreeing with the description that it is reminiscent of almond.
Third steep, 25 seconds. The leaves have fully unfurled from their balled state and doubled the volume of leaf in the gaiwan. The steeped leaves have a sharp, woody scent.
A little toastiness is coming through in this steep. The flavor is less round and buttery than the first two steeps and is fresher and perkier this time.
Fourth steep, 30 seconds. Less floral, more vegetal this time. A little like snow peas. After the tea is gone, the cup smells sugary.
Fifth steep, 35 seconds. The flavor is starting to fade, but is still floral and nutty.
It has been a while since I had a green oolong. I didn’t realize how deprived I was feeling until I had this one. So while I’m fairly sure this isn’t the best I’ve ever had, I’m inclined to rate it based on my experience today — which my pent up demand undoubtedly influenced.
Flavors: Almond, Butter, Floral, Gardenias, Peas