Gold Mudan "Jin Mu Dan" Wu Yi Rock Oolong Tea * Spring 2017

Tea type
Oolong Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
Berries, Biting, Bitter, Cannabis, Dark Chocolate, Floral, Fruit Tree Flowers, Menthol, Mineral, Potato, Sage, Smooth, Sour, Sweet, Tart
Sold in
Loose Leaf
Caffeine
Not available
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by derk
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 3 oz / 100 ml

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3 Tasting Notes View all

  • “I was a little at loss as for which of the three pages for this tea to use, but in the end I chose this one. Upon opening the pouch I recieved from derk, I get a fairly standard yancha aroma with a...” Read full tasting note
    89
  • “I haven’t drank any osmanthus tea for comparison over the past day, but I can say this Jin Mu Dan isn’t for me after another brew today. Too finicky – I sometimes edge the line of abuse with tea...” Read full tasting note
    47

From Yunnan Sourcing

Jin Mu Dan (金牡丹/Gold Mudan Flower) is a unique Wu Yi varietal which was first introduced more than 4 decades ago. It’s a hybrid of Tie Guan Yin and Huang Jin Gui (but is not quite the same as Anxi’s Jin Guan Yin). This varietal has oval-shaped leaves, some purple characteristics in the leaf and bid and has a thick leaf which makes it appropriate for roasting.

Our Jin Mu Dan is a Spring 2017 harvest (May) and the roasting level is medium-heavy but because it was done “respectfully” in many stages with lower temperatures, the tea has retained its character and complexity.

The taste of this tea has notes of black coffee and cannabis in the front and then transforms quickly in the mouth to floral and sweet. Later infusions are very pleasant with a less pronounced bean taste and more sweetness. Further aging will only bring this tea close to perfection (as the roast taste transforms).

Very infusable tea that will easily go 10-15 steeps brewed gong fu style. A perfect tea for aging!

May 2017 Harvest

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3 Tasting Notes

89
353 tasting notes

I was a little at loss as for which of the three pages for this tea to use, but in the end I chose this one.

Upon opening the pouch I recieved from derk, I get a fairly standard yancha aroma with a little bit of cocoa beans on top. The wet leaf smell is mostly floral, it evokes dark chocolate, paratha, cannabis and osthmanthus. This tea gives off a really strong aroma in the empty cup, mostly reminiscent of some fruit tree flowers.

The liquor is light in colour – somewhere between yellow and orange. It is smooth, and very mouth-watering with medium body. The taste is somewhat mellow and balanced – mostly mineral, sweet and tart with light bitterness and no astringency. There are flavours of berries, vanilla, cannabis and sage. In late steeps, I found it a bit too sour, which made me lower the rating a bit.

The long aftertaste is floral and expansive. It can get a little biting and bitter at times. I get some curry leaf and menthol on top of the notes mentioned before. The cha qi is fairly quick to arrive. It is warming, heady and leaves me considerably elevated.

I liked this tea a lot. The roast has faded and left it in a very nice spot that’s more balanced than some other yanchas I have tried to date.

Flavors: Berries, Biting, Bitter, Cannabis, Dark Chocolate, Floral, Fruit Tree Flowers, Menthol, Mineral, Potato, Sage, Smooth, Sour, Sweet, Tart

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
derk

Sounds like you got way more out of this than me! The remainder is up for the taking if you or anybody else reading this review would like it.

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47
477 tasting notes

I haven’t drank any osmanthus tea for comparison over the past day, but I can say this Jin Mu Dan isn’t for me after another brew today. Too finicky – I sometimes edge the line of abuse with tea (theme song ‘Push It’ by Salt-N-Pepa). It could often be called forgetfulness or neglect. I suppose it’s all part of the flow. For the fragrant yellow floral nose, it’s missing a longevity in brightness of the sour yellow fruit taste, as well as any pronounced sweetness. The mineral tastes muddy, lacking any distinctive quality. Flat mouthfeel. No noticeable energy. I read a review this weekend by Daylon R Thomas for an entirely different tea, about tasting colors. I’d say this tea tastes dull yellow and grey/brown. Stomped on flower petals.

The roast of the dry leaf, dark and sweet at this time, and the aroma of the liquor are its highlights. This would be a good tea for somebody who has a delicate hand and is interested in perfecting brewing technique.

To the back of the drawer it goes. Maybe either the tea will change or my tastes will by the time we meet again.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Daylon R Thomas

I gotta say, I do hesitate with some of the floral “fragrance” yanchas. Don’t let it dissuade you from trying osmanthus scented teas-they tend to be on the greener side of the spectrum especially if they are from Taiwan.

derk

Yeah, I still want to try osmanthus. I’ll be on the lookout for some of those teas from Taiwan.

derk

I wonder if a different brewing vessel would make for a more enjoyable session with this tea. One of those other types of clays, yixing? I used a purple jianshui clay gaiwan and cup for those two tastings. There is no ‘purple’ in this tea for that type of clay to bring out. Color theory, purple and yellow mixed creates brown. I’m now curious about the elemental and ionic contents of different types of clay.

I get the feeling this tea might be too harsh brewed in glass or porcelain but I’m willing to give those a try.

Daylon R Thomas

I am not sure how much I’d contribute to that conversation since I only have one clay gaiwan as the rest of my teaware are porcelain, glass, plastic, or metal. I have gong fu’d using a french press for surprising success, but I refer back to my porcelain or glass gaiwans. My gong fu sessions also tend to be very light with 4-6 grams for a 5 oz vessel, or 3 grams for 100 ml gaiwan. So maybe lighter brew to focus more on the individual flavors of the leaves? There is surely someone more knowledgeable on here, or even with Yunnan Sourcing, Reddit, or Facebook groups like Gong Fu Cha.

derk

Wow, eastkyteaguy’s experience was very different. It looks like he reviewed the 2016 harvest but I’m uncertain. I am very curious to see what his experience is with the 2017 if he has it.

Thank you for sharing some of your brewing techniques and I may seek another knowledgeable source because this tea is really throwing me.

eastkyteaguy

Guys, the version I reviewed was the 2016 version. I did not purchase the 2017 offering from Yunnan Sourcing, but I did buy one from Wuyi Origin if memory serves. With yancha, I usually throw it in a cabinet or a tub and let it sit anywhere from 6 months to 2 years before I fool with it. I’m pretty sure the version of this tea that I reviewed was around a year old. With regard to this tea’s parentage, it is my understanding that it is not at all unusual for different Wuyi oolong cultivars to be produced from the same parent cultivars. Differences come down to the percentage, generation, and origin of the parent plants used in the breeding program.

eastkyteaguy

Also, I have noticed that many of the yanchas offered by Yunnan Sourcing seem to have gotten lighter over the last couple of years. The roast on this particulae tea could have been a little different compared to the previous year. I would store what’s left of it and try it periodically over a length of time to see if it changes. If that doesn’t make a difference, this may just have been a bad harvest, or it may even just be something off with the amount of tea you received. Another possibility that is just as if not more likely is that this particular cultivar may just not be your thing. I, myself, am not huge on several Wuyi oolong cultivars, most notably Huang Guan Yin (I find it boring) and Rou Gui (I’ve found some good ones recently, but it is still not my favorite). I can often take or leave Dan Gui too.

derk

eastkyteaguy:

Ah yeah, I’ve been letting most of my yanchas sit for at least 6 months if they don’t already have a few years of age on them relative to purchase date. Both because I have a lot of tea to work through and my experience with Yunnan Sourcing’s 2017 Qidan earlier this year. In regards to cultivars, I didn’t take into consideration the polyploidy of plant genetics. That is a world beyond me at the moment. I know I didn’t like the few Huang Guan Yin I’ve tried as I, too, found them boring, remarkably so, and also unbalanced. My plan was to sample this Jin Mu Dan once more before year’s end and again early next to year to note any changes. If it’s still not working for me after that, I’ll stay away and hopefully find a good home for the remaining amount.

Thank you for your insight, especially regarding YS’s recent trend of greener yancha. That might be of great help in my searches for favorable Wuyi oolongs.

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