Zeng Shan Xiao Zhong of Wu Yi Fujian Spring 2016

Tea type
Black Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
Cocoa, Dark Chocolate, Black Pepper, Salty
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Loose Leaf
Caffeine
Not available
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by Hoálatha
Average preparation
Boiling 2 min, 15 sec 11 oz / 312 ml

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9 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Brewed with my gaiwan, the look of this tea makes you think, “Wow, dark.” Tiny black leaves unfold into rust-brown leaves, not broad but thin. The smell is very hard to decipher at first, slightly...” Read full tasting note
    55
  • “Well these dry leaves look perfect for a lapsang souchong, with a dry aroma of earth and wood, pretty basic smelling, the slightest note of like caramel and a tiny bit of smokiness. Right okay so...” Read full tasting note
  • “Weak…milkd. while this is tasty, it’s wimpier than previous harvests of this one. That’s not to say it’s BAD, but this harvest versus other teas, i’d likely go with a few other teas first. Final...” Read full tasting note
    79
  • “I have had this three times now. I don’t know what I did, but the first time I made it, it was excellent. I agree with what my mom said “It’s mild.” It has a little bit of a chocolate taste and...” Read full tasting note
    82

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9 Tasting Notes

55
7 tasting notes

Brewed with my gaiwan, the look of this tea makes you think, “Wow, dark.” Tiny black leaves unfold into rust-brown leaves, not broad but thin. The smell is very hard to decipher at first, slightly malty or maybe caramel with an overall roasty smell.

It’s a very mild tea, contrary to what you’d expect from those tiny, dark and tightly dried leaves. I would almost agree with the others and call it a weak black. It’s lacking that full-bodied depth and richness that you come to expect from a good black tea. (I even accidentally oversteeped my gaiwan for about 8 minutes before on this tea, and it still tasted very mild alongside all the astringency.)
However for tasting notes themselves, I definitely get the chocolate notes that are advertised. Deep, dark chocolate, maybe even like a coffee kind of taste. The issue is it feels very far away, lost in a muddle of undefinable mildness. Now I know some people don’t like a bold black, and this might be perfect for someone like that. It’s not a bad tea at all, the flavors are appealing but I just want so much more from it. Not my favorite.

Flavors: Cocoa, Dark Chocolate

Preparation
Boiling 1 min, 30 sec 2 tsp 5 OZ / 150 ML

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141 tasting notes

Well these dry leaves look perfect for a lapsang souchong, with a dry aroma of earth and wood, pretty basic smelling, the slightest note of like caramel and a tiny bit of smokiness. Right okay so this is one of those times where for some reason, I’ve drank like 3 or 4 sessions of this one before getting around to writing it up, and honestly I’ve found it a little plain in the past, I wasn’t getting quite as deep before, but especially when I made it western that one time, it tasted to me like .. boring plain teabags without the bitterness.
Alright in the warmed gaiwan here I get uhh it’s very distinct, seafoody kinda like scallops, and sort of dark chocolate with like.. sniffing the outside of a melon. There’s also a saltiness. Anyways let’s go!
(pics: https://www.instagram.com/p/BMM-ZStjAEo/?taken-by=mackie_tealife&hl=en)
I’m getting like a fudge cake sort of aroma after the rinse, it’s really thick smelling and very decadent, and sort of a pie-like smell, with apples. ooh the brewed first steep smells just like fudgesickle!
It does not taste as fudgesickley. It’s pretty thin-bodied, sort of berries, it’s really not that satisfying, there’s some bitterness and some underlying strawberry notes, like strawberry ice cream notes, and it’s quite earthy and leaves the mouth dry with spices lingering on the tongue.
There’s a very notable cooling in the second steep, it’s also quite a bit thicker, which I’m happy to see, I get sort of coffee beans, earth, sweetness, there’s an unpleasant sourness, but there’s also nice peach/apricot/cherry notes, but the fruitiness is dominated by orange in the aroma. The dryness and sourness is accompanied by a spiciness that hits you right away. The sourness is very reminiscent of a young sheng, which in itself I don’t mind but it is really strange in a red tea,
It has all the early sweetness and breadiness of a jinjunmei, and the chocolate and very strong wood notes,
I’m only on steep 4 (3? idk) and the dryness is taking over my mouth, it’s so distracting I find it difficult to search for notes, I was brewing at 92C, I’m dropping it down to see what I can actually get out of this
okay well it got rid of the near-painful astringency, but it suddenly tastes.. muddy and bland, very very bland, .. vaguely fruity. that’s pretty much it,
Steep 6: Malty tonic water
I was considering giving up but then I went for a seventh steep and it’s not as astringent, nice sweet and spicy, apples and creamy chocolate, how did that happen? It’s not thick and satisfying but at least it’s tasty now.
Nevermind, the ninth is bad again. I think im finished with this session,
not a very enjoyable one for me.

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79
10021 tasting notes

Weak…milkd. while this is tasty, it’s wimpier than previous harvests of this one. That’s not to say it’s BAD, but this harvest versus other teas, i’d likely go with a few other teas first.

Final count: 71

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82
139 tasting notes

I have had this three times now. I don’t know what I did, but the first time I made it, it was excellent.

I agree with what my mom said “It’s mild.”

It has a little bit of a chocolate taste and some dark fruit. I’ll try more leaf next time and see how that goes.

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55
3 tasting notes

At first the tea tasted mild, but after a few minutes of sitting and stirring it, it actually picked up an almost salt and pepper taste that added something to an otherwise mild tea. A second steep at 6 minutes really brought out some more flavor notes on the backend of the tea with a little astringency.

Flavors: Black Pepper, Salty

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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