Dry leaf: Prune, raisin, and figs with an overarching sharp, tart dried cranberry aroma. Very hard compacted dry cake material. Dried hay comes out when leaves are sitting in a warm vessel before brewing and vegetal notes appear after 5 sec. rinse.

Taste: Very light vegetal, seaweed, hay, nice sweetness. Dried cranberry flavor very apparent across all steepings.

Liquor: Bright yellow to gold color.

Spent leaf: Olive to dark olive. No discolorations. Material was fairly broken but it was a tightly compressed sample and took some coaxing to break apart.

Vessel: 125ml clay pot

(Warning folks: This is my very first taste of a sheng and I’m having a good time with it! I’ve waited a long time to get some shengs and am looking forward to drinking through them and reviewing them all. Thank you to Bitterleaf Teas for including this as a free sample in my first order!)

Wow. When I first smelled the dry leaf in the bag, I imagined my nose was inside a bag of moist dried cranberries. The dried cranberry tartness of the dry leaf actually carried over into the cup. I got a nice sweetness and a mouthwatering minerality with no astringency – very pleasant. Overall, I really enjoyed this tea and will adjust my rating/recommendation as my tasting experience expands. Very much looking forward to trying this one again on another day.

Stay tuned for more sheng madness!

03/10/17 Update: I’ve edited my tasting note after a second session with this tea using my dedicated sheng clay pot which I didn’t have when I first tried it. The clay pot plus a little more resting time seem to have made a HUGE difference in the brewing. My first tasting using my glazed gaiwan was ridiculously astringent and not very sweet. I believe time and the use of a clay pot really brought out the true flavors of this tea.

Flavors: Cranberry, Fig, Hay, Mineral, Raisins

Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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Former hard core coffee drinker/home roaster (15+ years) turned tea devotee. Began exploring tea in March 2016 and haven’t looked back. Thanks to Tommy for getting me started on my tea journey. You’re the best!

Working my way through lots of samples and will be trying to do a few reviews each month as I go through them. I’m new to this whole tasting and review thing so bear with me as I get some experience under my belt. I will revisit and adjust my reviews on second and third tastings if I feel it’s needed. I welcome any feedback and look forward to meeting some new tea people!


Austin, Texas USA

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