I’m obviously still working my way through a few of last year’s black teas, but fortunately, I don’t have many more left. I actually opened this one up around the end of October and used some of it to make iced tea (which was truly great, by the way). Since I managed to rip the bag it came in, I had to immediately transfer it to a tin. I then forgot about this tea until the end of November. After a test brew, I realized that it was still viable, though it may have fallen off a touch. I then devoted my time to finishing the last of it before moving on to something else. Overall, I found this to be a very nice black tea. Despite the slightly less-than-optimal condition it was in when I conducted my review session, it still had quite a bit to offer.
I prepared this tea gongfu style. After a quick rinse, I steeped 6 grams of loose tea leaves in 4 ounces of 195 F water for 5 seconds. This infusion was chased by 14 subsequent infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 7 seconds, 10 seconds, 15 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, and 5 minutes.
Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves emitted aromas of nectarine, peach, malt, and honey. After the rinse, I found scents of roasted nuts and wood backed by a hint of citrus. The first infusion brought out something of an herbal quality on the nose. In the mouth, the liquor offered notes of roasted nuts, wood, malt, and honey with indistinct stone fruit notes and some cocoa tones. Subsequent infusions brought out considerably more cocoa. I also caught notes of red apple, brown sugar, blood orange, red pear, baked bread, prune, eucalyptus, black cherry, minerals, nectarine, sugarcane, and peach underscored by fleeting impressions of nutmeg, cinnamon, and something like camphor/menthol. The roasted nut notes separated somewhat, as I began to be reminded of a mix of roasted almonds and roasted walnuts. The later infusions mostly boasted notes of minerals, malt, wood, roasted nuts, and cocoa balanced by lingering hints of fruit and herbs.
Again, I did not treat this tea as well as I should have, but there was still a lot of life left in it. I kind of wish I had gotten to it sooner and that I had not been so exhausted and stuffy when I conducted my review session, but it’s a little late to do anything about that now. This was a very enjoyable tea. Each of the 2016 Yunnan Sourcing purple black teas that I tried were very good. This one was certainly no exception.
Flavors: Almond, Blood Orange, Bread, Brown Sugar, Camphor, Cherry, Cinnamon, Cocoa, Dried Fruit, Eucalyptus, Honey, Malt, Menthol, Mineral, Nutmeg, Peach, Pear, Red Apple, Sugarcane, Walnut, Wood