My coworker was visiting family in Taiwan and offered to bring me back tea. Apparently, he and his cousins went out trying a whole bunch of different tea shops on the hunt. I’m both thankful he did it and jealous. I’ll be reviewing the various teas he got for me over the next little bit.
Starting with the Sun Moon Lake black tea. Appearance: beautiful, long twisted tea leaves. I seriously love how these look. When steeped, they have a leathery appearance. Liquor: dark amber-brown. Very smooth, complex mouthfeel. Smell: dark, malty, and a little smoky. Taste: Sun Moon Lake is interesting because it is an Assam variety plant, grown in Taiwan (so the course reversed, where the Chinese variety were taken to Darjeeling). This definitely tastes like an Assam – assertive, malty, complex. It has some nutty, almost cocoa, flavor notes. It is good (and varied) throughout the cooling process. Much less astringency than most black teas (although I did steep for a short time for a black tea) This is right up there with a good Darjeeling as my top-two favorite black teas – for obviously different reasons. Yum.