This Nam Lahn is really a very nice smooth afternoon tea, not one of the best teas Vietnam has to offer but a good example of what can come from their jungles.
Dried leaves: Somewhat unremarkable, very few tips and also it looked very twiggy which made me unduly nervous.
Wet leaves: Smell woody which is to be expected and I detect hints of chocolate other than that the scent is actually fairly tame.
Liquor: A beautiful and quite vibrant golden amber, the unadulterated clarity was the first thing I noticed, if their was such a thing as a mountain tea spring this is what it would look like. The taste did not disappoint, it is a ridiculously smooth tea, almost too smooth if that makes any sense. Not even a hint of astringency and the tea seemed to dance across the tongue while tickling the individual taste buds. There are some subtle chocolate notes, and if definitely has an underlying woody theme but that does not dominate, rather this tea strikes a perfect balance of sweet and smooth and earthy. Perhaps because of the geographical closeness to the Yunnan province or other factors unknown, but this Nam Lahn is remarkably similar to a nice Dian Hong.
In fact this tea reminds me of going out with your girlfriends twin sister, they look a lot alike, they smell, feel and taste similar. And the sister may even be smoother, and better polished, yet their isn’t the familiarity. In fact the sister may remind you to much of the original girlfriend to enjoy yourself.
Yes in my case while this is really a lovely tea it is to similar to a dian hong and lacks the soul that the Chinese black has. However if a tea from yunnan is a bit to harsh for you I encourage you to give its twin sister a whirl, you just may like it.
I am very excited now that I have discovered Vietnamese tea, and look forward to seeing what else this small country has to offer.
3g tea, 8 oz water, 4 min, 205F.