From their Tea of the Month Club (I’m allowed to splurg! :P)
I’m breaking in my gaiwan with this today! :D
The dry leaves smell like a musky flower; like a flower you’ve picked at the height of its pollen production, and it’s been sitting in a vase for a week. lol Smells a lot like Golden Needle, but not as floral.
The first steep is light and mostly vegetal with just a hint of that flower I picked earlier. A longer first steep starts to show it’s creamy side, and is sweeter. My favorite part! (Both the creamy and sweet.) Had to grab a third cup because, like I said, just meeting my new gaiwan—the longer of the first steeps went bitter. Oh, sad.
Second steep continues to be creamy and sweet. I’m going to try cooler water since that bitterness is trying to hang on. A bit astringent, too. Not terribly so, though. :) Hmm, the trick to pouring from a gaiwan without making a mess: Pour with confidence! Haha!
Third steep: I think this is the only way I like honey taste—saying hello from a plain tea leaf. With the honey comes a thicker brew, coats my mouth in the best way possible. It gets sweeter as it cools. Oh, could you IMAGINE ice tea with this! Brain explosion!
Steep 4: Did this one a bit long… such a PRETTY amber color. Squee! The leaves are really starting to unfold now. I’m exploring the idea of what “minerality” means in a tea taste. It’s not quite astringency, is it… but like when you taste hard water? Growing up, we had a deep well that tapped into an underground spring that ran through bedrock, and that water is what this tea reminds me of. :)
Steep 5: This tastes a lot like the Golden Needle I mentioned earlier, but it’s not quite so thick. And it’s floral, but not ridiculously so. It seems altogether balanced and an interesting combination of all the above tastes. Teehee! :) The later steeps go along the same lines as this one. Happiness!
Oh, my, I am messy. _ Thank goodness for tea towels. I decided not to get a full-blown tea table (yet?), but have a tea towel and bamboo bowl. :3
Flavors: Astringent, Floral, Honey, Mineral, Sweet