First to review this one!? Really!? Did no one else request it or am I just the first to get to it…
Anyway; I’ve got a few queued tasting notes to get to but it was important to me that I write this one first ‘cause I know Nanuoshan really wanted reviews up by the 19th – which was yesterday, and due to some stupid decisions (which I’ll get to in another tasting note) that didn’t happen with the last two samples from them, despite what I thought was a well thought out drinking schedule.
I drank this one Gong Fu in my CS Gaiwan; I picked it out because I also got the other Rougui that they were offereing, which was new to me as well, and I wanted to sort of compare and see the differences between the two. And basically what I did was just write tons and tons of jot notes while I drank this one and then went back afterwards and edited them into more concise, easy to read paragraphs. I also did a wash for this one, though took no notes on that step.
- 30 sec Roasty, Mineral, very brisk/dark and a quite astringent w. charcoal/ashy notes? Some cinnamon – it’s very ‘dry’. Leaves opened a little; leaf in the gaiwan smells strongly roasty/ashy and reminds me a bit of bitter, black coffee. Overall kind of reminds me of the smell of a campfire AFTER water’s been poured on it to put it out; wet/damp, ashy/smokey still…
- 30 sec Smells less harsh and a bit sweeter with cinnamon notes. Lost most of the astringency/charcoal notes. Still has mineral notes and a touch of roastiness. Definitely sweeter; some floral notes are starting to emerge near the end of the sip & in the aftertaste. Has a bit of sharpness to it; very pithy.
- 60 sec No roast/mineral notes, but some astringency and bite from the bumper crop of pithy notes popping up. Floral notes are more amped up with an underlying, softer fruit flavour than the citrus/pith that’s been present so far; maybe a stonefruit? Cinnamon note is the same. Pumpernickel bread notes? Leaves are totally opened up now.
- 90 sec Very floral and still a little bit mineral and cinnamon tasting; still reminds me of stonefruit a little bit. Most of pumpernickel flavour is very toned down and while I still taste some citrus/lemon there’s no longer that bitterness/‘tang’. This is the ‘gentlest’ tasting infusion thus far with a very soft, smooth mouthfeel.
I think, between the two different types, I enjoyed the other one a lot more; it was sweeter/fruitier and I liked the nut notes in it, which I didn’t observe with this one. However, this was still very good and absolutely had similarities while still being different overall. Much more floral, and I think the first infusion was a lot more abrasive than Rougui.
Wish someone else would review this though (if anyone else grabbed a sample of it?) because I know I’m not that experienced with this variety and I’d like to see how others viewed it, and how my observations line up. The fact no one else has written for this one unnerves me a little. I hope I’m not missing another page for this tea, with other reviews…