This is my first experience with a first flush Darjeeling. I do love the soft citrus, almost-floral, sweet smell of the dry leaves. I’m not so sure about the broth flavor though. A little citrus and a lot of green grape, now I think I understand what “muscatel” means. There’s also a touch of bitterness so perhaps 200F was a bit too hot?

Second infusion is quite floral and yes, I definitely need to use cooler water for this.

Third infusion is even more strongly florally-citrus but I still have that bitterness even though I lowered the temp to 185F. Mayhaps it only needs 15 seconds instead of the 30 second infusions I’ve been doing.

Fourth infusion. I just can’t win. I have come to the conclusion that there is too much leaf in this (even though it’s my usual amount for this gaiwan) and I should just stick to using a teapot for 1st flush Darjeelings.

Not rating this because it just wouldn’t be fair to what is probably a perfectly lovely tea when steeped correctly.

200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec 4 g 4 OZ / 133 ML

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I prefer loose-leaf teas but I do like to keep some tea bags around for travel. I prefer black teas (especially Yunnans), dark oolongs, and pu’erh. My #1 favorite is Jasmine Golden Yunnan from


Bar Harbor, Maine, United States


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