Finally broke into my first cake of this. After getting the 3 previous years’ Snoozefests, I went in for 2 cakes in 2020. My experience with these has always been positive. Notes of Strawberry and Orchid being the two that have stood out the most to me. We’ll see how this one does after hiding in my storage for 11 months.
1st impression: Aroma of tropical fruit, apricot, and strawberry. A dark minerally sweet back drop. Some floral/herbal notes in there as well. A little drywall in there as well. Taste is notably middle of the tongue bitter. Some sweetness, some fruit and floral. Compared to 2019: This has a darker aroma and is overall more vegetal and a lot more bitter. That may also be the difference of an extra year in storage. Right now the fruit on this is leaning more stonefruit than strawberry. And the orchid profile from the 2019 is coming out a lot more creamy on this one. These are all slight differences; they are still very much the same teas except this have a hard acrid bitterness that hadn’t been in previous years versions.
Bitterness. This is the first snoozefest I’ve tried where I’ve thought this could use a few more years. Long lingering bitterness. Cooling sensation at the back of the throat. Floral, fruity, and dark. Drying.
After the first 2 steeps I’m really regretting starting this on an empty stomach. This is not the same gentle crowd-pleaser of the previous years. It is settling into a more vegetal and mineral taste with some cooling and lingering bitterness.
Head rush. Some pressure on my forehead and cheeks.
Drink down: The bitterness did begin to fade about half way through. The texture is decently thick veering toward creamy, but it is hard to tell with the way this tea makes my mouth feel dry. A good caffeine head rush. Decently complex. Pleasant. More powerful than I expected from the w2t $15 sheng special.
This’ll be the young sheng I’ll drink on occasionally over the next year. The 2nd cake and anything left over at the end of the year will go in the pumidor to age a while.
Later review: Something must have been up with my water. I’ve got a new kettle and water filter system. The bitterness pretty much disappeared. This is now delightful. Soapy orchid & stonefruit.
Flavors: Apricot, Floral, Fruity, Orchid, Vegetal