I received a sample of this some time ago – as in possibly over a year ago – and I could kick myself for not making it sooner! It has lost some of its bloom, I am sure. The sample package is sort of papery and probably doesn’t preserve flavor long term very well.The dry leaves have a nice smell, and I am getting lots of toasty aroma like toasted walnuts and toasted whole grain bread.
I did a quick rinse which I poured away, and I am glad I did because the first steep was not very flavorful. I was using a gaiwan and gave it about 10 seconds as they instructed.
The second steep was AWESOME. It was so complex and floral! It had so much going for it, but alas, it was the only steep that wow’ed me like that, and it is all my fault for letting it get old.
I did resteep it about six more times but the remaining steeps were lackluster compared to steep two, and compared to what I feel this tea would have been 18 months ago.
It was supposed to be a calming evening gong fu service, but I am dogsitting for Superanna and the dogs know we sometimes pair with cheese. (Last night was chocolate. Sorry puppers!) So in the tiny space on the floor where we sit for gong fu, I had my fifty-eight pound dog step over everything and lie down behind me pressed against my back and my daughter’s Peke A Poo right beside the tea tray trying to touch the chocolate. Tap. Tap. This? Some for me? I call him my Fu dog because he looks like a Fu Lion statue! It is very appropriate for him to be near as I drink my Chinese teas. Between the milling hopeful dogs and the disappointing tea, it didnkt turn out quite as expected, but there is always another tea time! Maybe this time we will pair with cheese to make the puppers happy.