Wang Family Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

91

Free sample from my last order from WFT. This is a nice tea! I’m not usually one for roasted oolongs, but this one is quite good.

Very bold flavor. The roast is done with expert care. Supposedly was roasted three times. No bitterness. Mild-medium sweetness. Lasts 8-9 infusions.

Harvest: Spring, 2024
Location: Bagua Shan
Cultivar: Taicha No. 20/Ying Xiang
Elevation: 400 mg
Roast: Medium

Dry leaf: Coffee, charcoal, roasty
Wet leaf: Same
Flavors: Coffee, brown sugar, sweet, charcoal, smooth

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Charcoal, Coffee, Roasty, Smooth, Sweet

Daylon R Thomas

They advertise their roasts, and deliver on their own hype. They’re light roasts are also good, and the darker ones are always balanced and buttery.

Marshall Weber

I love all the info they provide on their teas! I find their descriptions are usually spot on. Might have to try more of their roasted teas in the future.

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100

HO-LI SHAN this is amazing! Now I see why people like Lishan so much. Fruitiest tea I’ve tried. Furthermore, the steep-to-steep variance is insane.

The smell when I opened the bag was heavenly. No other way to describe it. Red, tropical fruits, sweet. Wet leaves screamed breakfast table, still with some fruit. First steep was all fruit all the way, quite sweet. Second steep was savory, green, vegetal. Third steep was back to sweet and fruity. Fourth steep is white sugar and a bit sweeter. Later infusions are vanilla, fruity, and sweet.

A top five tea in terms of complexity. Balance is top notch. Hui gan is fruity and lasts at least 2 minutes. Zero bitterness and astringency. Medium-high sweetness. Mouthfeel is very smooth and full and slippery like a longan. Longevity is 9-10 infusions.

This experience reminds me why I love tea so much. Thank you, Wang Family.

Harvest: Spring 2024
Location: Bi Lu Xi, Renai Township, Li Shan
Elevation: 2300 m
Cultivar: Qing Xin

Dry leaf: Pomegranate, cherry.
Wet leaf: Breakfast table, toast, butter, cream, papaya, guava.
Flavors: Papaya, guava, blackberry, sweet, mung bean, vegetal, savory, jackfruit, peach, white sugar, vanilla.

Flavors: Blackberry, Butter, Cherry, Cream, Guava, Mung Bean, Papaya, Peach, Pomegranate, Sugar, Toast, Vanilla, Vegetal

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87

Had a nice note all written out and then chrome decided to delete it. Yay. Or maybe I should blame myself for not letting my eyes be able to be torn away from Iron Flame. Either way, once again here are notes from this most delectable oolong.

Dry aroma: dry white sesame seeds.
Dry appearance: dark green and tightly twisted balls

Flavor: Charcoal, sesame, floral undertones, minerality
Mouthfeel: incredibly smooth. With each infusion it becomes a bit silkier..

Wet leaf: charcoal and sesame

With each infusion, it gets better and better. I have no idea of what number I’m on. 10? I have no idea. But my kettle is empty so I’m thinking I’ll make the rest into an iced version for while I sit at my daughter’s swim team.

Edit: YUP! This makes an awesome tea on the go. Sesame, floral notes, minerality up the wazoo. So good.

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85

From Daylon R Thomas a while ago!  Thanks very much!  Impossible to measure these leaves unless using a scale.  Once in a while, I seem to say “these are the longest leaves I have ever seen”, but these must be the longest!  Not so much twisted together, as almost straightened somehow, but still very difficult even to POUR out of the skinny bag. I was pleased to notice the description says: “Our Cang Ya is tightly twisted into a strip shape.”  So there you go.  The dry leaf has a scent of summer squash and dried hay.  The flavor is also summer squash!   But also a sweet fruit candy flavor that I thought might be strawberry, but then settled on candy grape. The second steep is rich but not overdone or bitter.  Biscuity.  I really expected the flavor to be much lighter on this one, so I’m very happy with how this one resulted! (I’m really not describing the richer flavors here, but there are some.)
Steep #1  // 22 minutes after boiling // 1 1/2 – 2 minute steep
Steep #2 //  just boiled // 3 min

Flavors: Biscuit, Grapes, Hay, Squash

"Youngest"

This sounds like the kind of tea I would swap somebody and package each leaf individually for a prank.

tea-sipper

Hah, well the leaves are certainly big enough for that!

Daylon R Thomas

I had a hard time packing that one back and just kept the boxes when I sent it. I personally thought the tea was actually too strong for me despite having sweeter profiles. It had an almost jammy malt to me that was a little over powering when I had it.

tea-sipper

Oh “jammy malt” is exactly my jam! (sorry) But when I was sipping this, I definitely thought you sent it because you found it too strong. I don’t think any tea could be too strong for me. :D

gmathis

Did you have enough left for Eclipse Day? Couldn’t be a more perfect name :) We were in the 90% zone. Pretty interesting viewing!

tea-sipper

Good catch, gmathis! I was thinking about which teas I should have had for the eclipse after the fact. And here was the perfect tea right in my hands five days ago! darn. The eclipse was amazing. I thought it was the perfect time to do yard work while I waited for it. Then I was waiting for the lights to turn back on. :D

Daylon R Thomas

Cool. We got 98% totality in Michigan.

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91

The last of my WFT samples to try. This one is super super fruity on the nose, less so on the palate but still with a good bit of papaya. Another really good tea from WFT. I love love love this company and they will for sure be getting many repeat orders. Best tea company. Period.

No astringency or bitterness. Mild sweetness. Lasts 7-8 infusions. Great balance of flavors. Fairly complex. Mouthfeel is nothing remarkable.

This one is the third cultivar among the batch and it is also a “dong pian,” which means it was harvested in winter. Finally, the tea is grown at 500 m. Surprisingly, this tea still tastes like a > 1000 m Qing Xin. Most similar to Shan Lin Xi teas IMO.

Harvest: Winter, 2022
Location: Bagua Shan
Elevation: 500 m
Cultivar: Siji Chun

Dry Leaf: Papaya, cream
Wet Leaf: Papaya, cream, vegetal
Flavors: Papaya, cream, fruity, sweet, vegetal, floral.

Flavors: Cream, Floral, Fruity, Papaya, Sweet, Vegetal

Leafhopper

Interesting! I’ve always overlooked this tea because of the price. Most Si Ji Chun teas aren’t very exciting, but I’m not surprised that Wang’s is different. :)

Marshall Weber

Yes I think it’s pretty nice for the price! Can’t believe how similar it tastes to some of the high mountain teas.

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91

Free sample sent with my first order from WFT. This one is a fruit bomb in the dry leaf, then becomes more floral and vegetal in taste and smell of wet leaves.

Mild sweetness, no bitterness or astringency. Flavors fairly intense for a high mountain oolong. Aftertaste lingers for a while and is mostly comprised of savory saline/vegetal flavor. The sweetness is on the front/middle of the palate. Longevity is 5 infusions.

Long Feng Xia is a mountain in the Shanlin Xi area. I’m a big fan of Shanlin Xi teas, and this is no exception :).

Harvest: Spring 2023
Location: Long Feng Xia, Shanlin Xi
Elevation: 1900 m
Cultivar: Qing Xin

Dry leaf: Papaya, tropical fruit, melon
Wet leaf: Papaya, tropical fruit, floral, vegetal
Flavors: Floral, sweet, savory, umami, vegetal, saline, cream

Flavors: Cream, Floral, Melon, Papaya, Saline, Savory, Sweet, Tropical Fruit, Umami, Vegetal

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91

The most distinct of the WFT oolongs for sure. Very complex as others have mentioned. This is the only one that is not a high mountain oolong either. Also a different cultivar (Xue Li = “Snow Pear”). The difference is not only notable in the flavor, but in the liquor as well, which is darker yellow and not as clear as the high mountain oolongs.

Medium bitterness, no astringency. Medium-low sweetness. Aftertaste lasts multiple minutes and is salty and sweet.

Harvest: Spring 2023
Cultivar: Xue Li
Location: Gangkou, Manzhou Township, Taiwan

Dry leaf: Floral, seaweed
Wet leaf: Salt, seaweed
Flavors: Floral, seaweed, fruity, umami, mung bean, vegetal, sweet, salty

Flavors: Floral, Fruity, Mung Bean, Salty, Seaweed, Sweet, Umami, Vegetal

Leafhopper

Interesting! I’ve never had a Gangkou oolong because I was warned away by the bitterness.

Marshall Weber

There is definitely some mild-moderate bitterness, but it’s not so bad as to take away from the tea in my opinion. And I think I’m fairly sensitive to it. I don’t drink things like coffee or IPAs (and lots of young shengs) because they are too bitter for me :).

Leafhopper

I drink both coffee and IPAs on occasion, but don’t enjoy bitterness in my oolongs! Glad it isn’t a deal breaker in this one.

Marshall Weber

I totally agree! Not generally something I appreciate in any tea, but the occasional touch of bitterness doesn’t bother me much :).

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89

Another very nice tea from WFT. One of my last samples. It’s okay though because I have more coming in the mail ;). This one is great, but is overall not as complex as some of their others. Certainly a nice intense flavor that lasts ~7 infusions, though.

Minimal to no sweetness. No bitterness or astringency. Mouthfeel is creamy. Aftertaste is citrusy and lasts awhile.

Harvest: Spring, 2023
Location: Qi Lai Shan
Elevation: 1900 m
Cultivar: Qing Xin

Dry leaf: vegetal
Wet leaf: vegetal, barley
Flavor: vegetal, barley, lemon, cream.

Flavors: Citrus, Cream, Lemon, Roasted Barley, Vegetal

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98

Second tea from my new order from WFT. I remember how amazing this tea was now. I think that this year’s tea is a bit less dynamic than the winter 2022 batch I last drank, but this tea is still exquisite. That lovely mystical misty mountain forest flavor that made me fall in love with this tea is still present. The main drawback is I don’t get much in the way of tropical fruits on the nose this year. Not a huge deal though :).

So glad I splurged on 75 g of this. I will be enjoying it for at least a couple of months I bet. Phenomenal stuff really. Now I just wish I had more of the Bi Lu Xi as well haha.

Harvest: Spring 2024
Location: Da Yu Ling
Elevation: 2500 m
Cultivar: Qing Xin

Flavors: Mist, rainforest, sweet, vegetal, cabbage, cream, butter

Flavors: Butter, Cabbage, Cream, Petrichor, Rainforest, Sweet, Vegetal

Leafhopper

I’m glad you like their DYL as much as I do! I haven’t gotten tropical fruit in the harvests I’ve tried, but it’s still an excellent tea.

Marshall Weber

OMG it’s so good! I’m probs gonna buy some every year going forward. Love all of WFTs teas.

Leafhopper

Yes, Wang is one of my favourite oolong vendors. They have a 10% off sale right now and I’m very tempted to buy tea I don’t need.

Marshall Weber

Hahaha I’m also tempted but have no money at the moment unfortunately. It’s okay though because I have plenty of this DYL left :)

Daylon R Thomas

I just got one of the Dayuling and Wang Jia Cong Fu Cha. This is the first time I didn’t spend over $50 for an order lol. It would have been higher if the Jasmine Shanlinxi didn’t run out of stock.

Leafhopper

Nice! I look forward to your opinion of the Wang Jia tea. I wish they had more 2024 teas in stock. My secret source is only selling one oolong this year (spring 2024 Lishan), so I’ll need to buy other gaoshan at some point.

Marshall Weber

Oh nice! I’m also curious to see your thoughts on both teas :).

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98

JEEZUM this is good. WFT has the highest quality tea of any vendor I’ve tried. This one is complex beyond it’s competitors. Savory, vegetal, floral, fruity, sweet, creamy all combined. Crazy mouthfeel, huigan, aftertaste. Perfect balance.

Medium-low sweetness, no astringency or bitterness. Longevity is 6 infusions. Mouthfeel is quite buttery. Aftertaste lasts minutes. Super yummy and barely any faults.

The most unique aspect of this tea is that every steep is a bouquet of new flavors. Truly the perfect tea for gongfu.

Harvest: Winter 2022
Cultivar: Qing Xin
Location: Da Yu Ling
Elevation: 2500 m

Dry leaf: papaya, mango, tropical
Wet leaf: papaya, mango, tropical, vegetal, floral
Flavor: Cabbage, vegetal, floral, buttery, creamy, savory, sweet, sugar, salt, mist, rainforest.

Flavors: Butter, Cabbage, Cream, Floral, Fruity, Mango, Papaya, Rainforest, Salt, Savory, Sugar, Sweet, Tropical Fruit, Vegetal

Leafhopper

Yes, Wang has some awesome teas! I had a different harvest and didn’t get those tropical flavours, but Daylon and I were also raving over those mist/rainforest/ethereal notes. I hope you got some of their FSS.

Marshall Weber

IK the rainforest notes are wild! Like you’re transported there in the middle of a foggy, cloudy afternoon.

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87

Thanks to Daylon for sending me this tea! I have a couple of Wang’s competition teas in my museum archives, but this sample is the first one I’ve tried. Like Daylon, I was tempted to get this tea instead of the Competition Shan Cha I eventually bought, but I worried the roast would be too heavy. I steeped 6 g of leaf in a 120 ml pot using boiling water for 50, 40, 55, 70, 90, 120, 150, 180, and 240 seconds, plus some uncounted steeps.

The dry aroma is of charcoal, chestnuts, orchids, other flowers, and grass. The first steep has notes of chestnuts, grain, charcoal, orchids, honey, and grass. I get hints of peach in the second steep, along with a little more charcoal and some florals. Sadly, the peach disappears after this steep, and the tea is buttery, nutty, and roasty with lots of florals to balance it out. By steep six, I start getting the minerals and pine that Daylon mentioned, and the roast is becoming more pronounced. Later steeps have a saline quality, lots of chestnuts and roast, and a surprisingly floral and grassy aftertaste.

While this is definitely a roasted tea, it’s nicely balanced with the chestnuts and florals. The tea is pleasant to drink and the flavours evolve in an interesting way. I wish there was more fruit, and while the thick body and florality remind me of Lishan, I’m not sure I would have guessed the terroir if it wasn’t on the label. I don’t think I could finish 75 g, but I will enjoy the rest of this sample.

Flavors: Butter, Charcoal, Chestnut, Floral, Grain, Grass, Honey, Mineral, Nutty, Orchid, Peach, Pine, Roasted, Saline, Sweet

Preparation
Boiling 6 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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95

Might be an off day for my palate? This is one I was anticipating enjoying quite a bit. 25 seconds for first steep, 30 second, 55 third. Just not getting much flavor out of it honestly. Think I need to try again another time. Will hold off on final judgement until then :).

UPDATE: Tried some again the following day and BOOM. Flavor hit me this time for sure! Adjusting my rating appropriately. My palate was not feeling it yesterday. Weird how that happens! I didn’t adjust brewing parameters or anything.

Anyways, this is mostly tropical fruit in smell and flavor and I love it! Not as rich as the Fushou Shan, but still fairly rich. Great value for the price. Would be interesting to do a side-by-side brew of this and the one from Eco-cha. Hard to say which one is better at the moment tbh.

Mild sweetness, no astringency or bitterness. Longevity is 4-6 infusions. Mouthfeel is creamy and rich. Notes shift more vegetal in the later infusions.

Harvest: Spring 2023
Cultivar: Qing Xin
Location: Shanlin Xi
Elevation: 1200 m

Dry leaf: Sweet
Wet leaf: Papaya, sweet, tropical fruit
Flavors: Sweet, vegetal, papaya, pineapple, tropical fruit, cream, floral, coconut, honeysuckle, creamed spinach.

Flavors: Coconut, Cream, Floral, Fruity, Honeysuckle, Papaya, Pineapple, Spinach, Sweet, Tropical Fruit, Vegetal

Daylon R Thomas

This one is better Western, and Eco-Cha’s can be better gong fu. The last few times I’ve had Eco-Cha’s I’ve actually preferred this one because of it’s bright energy. Eco-Cha’s can be more floral, and previous crops were fruitier, though recent crops from 2020 and 2019 and 2018 for me were more floral/vegetal.

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100

Decided to give WFT a chance to redeem themselves, and boy did they! This tea is UNPARALLELED. There are simply no words strong enough to describe it’s beauty.

The color of the brew is clear, crisp, transparent and lime green like a gemstone. The flavor is perfectly balanced with excessively sweet and long aftertaste. High sweetness, no bitterness or astringency. Flavor is incredibly rich. Easily the richest flavor of any unroasted oolong I’ve tried. Longevity is about 6 infusions, but they are golden infusions infusions ripe with flavor.

This is PEAK Taiwanese oolong. I would drink this everyday if I could afford it. Just absolutely perfect and right up my alley! I am ecstatic to work my way through the rest of these samples (assuming they are all as I ordered them ;)) and see what other gems WFT has to offer.

Also this is the 100th tea I’ve tried and reviewed on Steepster! Quite fitting that I am rating it 100/100 then :).

Harvest: Winter 2022
Location: Fu Shou Shan
Elevation: 2500 m
Cultivar: Qing Xin

Dry leaf: White sugar, fruity, stonefruit
Wet leaf: Vegetal, orchid, floral
Flavors: Peach blossom, floral, fruity, vegetal, white sugar, sweet, grassy, spinach, rich, fresh, papaya, egg.

Flavors: Egg, Floral, Fresh, Fruity, Grassy, Orchid, Papaya, Peach, Rich, Spinach, Stonefruit, Sugar, Sweet, Vegetal

ashmanra

Hooray for redemption teas!

Marshall Weber

Hahaha I definitely agree! Definitely needed after a disappointment earlier in the day. Reached out to WFT and they are sending a sample of the unroasted Bilu Xi for free and were apologetic. Love the customer service!
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82

Well…this isn’t right. I ordered this tea, but I wanted it unroasted. Instead, they sent me the roasted version. I looked at my order on my account and I did indeed order it unroasted. Kind of disappointing that they messed up part of my first order. Anyways, it’s still pretty good. I will try not to let that part taint my rating of this tea.

No bitterness or astringency. Definitely a light roast, but the flavors are still predominately dark. Mild-mod sweetness. Mouthfeel is unremarkable.

I think given the strong coffee notes in this tea, and my dislike of coffee flavoring, it is not the tea for me. However, I can see how many people would find this tea quite enjoyable. Certainly a high quality tea.

Harvest: Spring 2023
Location: Bilu Xi, Renai Township, Li Shan
Elevation: 2300 m
Cultivar: Qing Xin

Dry leaf: Roasted, toasty
Wet leaf: Same
Flavors: Coffee, chocolate, nutty, tiramisu, sweet

Flavors: Chocolate, Coffee, Nutty, Roasted, Sweet, Toasty

ashmanra

I would definitely contact them and see if they will make it right!

Marshall Weber

Yea I just reached out to them on their website. Hate doing that kind of thing, but I did pay $0.70/g for this tea haha. Hopefully they’ll make it right as you say :).

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94

First of seven samples from Wang Family Tea (WFT). Everyone seems to ooh and ahh over this company, so I wanted to check them out for myself. I am quite impressed with this tea! It’s incredibly refined, clean, and elegant.

No bitterness or astringency. Medium-high sweetness. Aftertaste is long and sweet, lastnig 1-2 minutes at least. ONLY downside is it doesn’t have the greatest longevity in the world. Intensity dropped off after the first 2-3 infusions, but it was still very good. Lasted 6-7 infusions. Might fool around with temperature, steep times, and intervals on future sessions :).

This tea is from Cui Feng, which is a mountain in the Li Shan area, but not Li Shan itself.

I am very excited to try the rest of the samples I got! This one is pretty phenomenal! I could sit there and smell it for hours on end. Some of the most complete and prettiest leaves I’ve seen too. This is a great value as well, coming in around $0.50/g.

Harvest: Spring 2023
Location: Cui Feng, Nantou County
Elevation: 1800 m
Cultivar: Qing Xin

Dry leaf: Papaya, cream.
Wet leaf: Vegetal, floral, orchid.
Flavors: Sweet, cream, floral, fruity, orchid, citrus, melon.

Flavors: Cream, Floral, Fruity, Melon, Orchid, Papaya, Sweet, Vegetal

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93

Spring 2021 harvest.

If I were rating this tea based on the first 2-3 infusions, it’s close to a perfect 100. But longevity is important too and unfortunately, that’s where this tea is lacking. It peaks very early and the flavor drops precipitously.

The initial steeps are exquisite. Full bodied with a rush of complex florals and a texture that feels like liquid silk rolling around on your tongue. Notes of wildflowers, lily, and honeysuckle. This is accompanied by a juicy mélange of tropical fruit and nectar sweetness. However, the tea drops off quickly after the 3rd steep becoming more muted as the floral-tropical flavor fades into the background. After 5 steeps, it goes completely flat and has little if anything left to offer. Rather disappointing as most gaoshans give at least 6-7 decent infusions.

Flavors: Apricot, Cantaloupe, Floral, Honeysuckle, Lily, Nectar, Tropical Fruit, Wildflowers

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C
Marshall Weber

That’s unfortunate. Have high hopes for Wang Family Tea based on general perception of the company in the tea community. Have you had a similar experience with their other teas?

Daylon R Thomas

I’m going to bud in Lucky Me-The Jasmine Scented Shanlinxi lasted longer for me, and same with the Cuifeng and the Wild Versions of the Shanlinxi and hybrids. However, most of them last 6 or seven resteeps going flat even those individual cases. Most of the other teas require longer steep times, but didn’t always rebrew as strongly. I still personally love them and I personally don’t always need endless rebrews since I’m on the move a lot, but it does impact cost ratio. This Shanlinxi’s still one of my favorites for the taste and L-Theanine combo.

LuckyMe

With any tea shop there’s always going to be a tea here or there that’s lacking in some way. But I still recommend Wang Family Tea. I’ve tried a bunch of their teas and all of them are solid. They’re currently my go-to for Taiwanese oolongs.

Like Daylon said, most oolongs last about 6 infusions. This one peaks a little early but it’s still crave-worthy.

Marshall Weber

It’s great to hear that you like their teas so much! I’m super excited to give them a try. They’re just a bit expensive haha.

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I’m going to save money and only pick teas I like this summer…..$150 later…

Yeah. I’m a sucker. I got a bunch of teas from Magic Hour and Wang Family Tea, some of which I intend on fully sharing. I got this tea with the small leaf Shan Lin Xi Black and a Qin Yun Oolong, and I honestly was not a huge fan of either of those two teas, which I’ll describe in a few posts away. This one, however, I was. I feel guilty that I really like the nuclear green oolong tea saturating markets, but green oolongs are my sweet treats without the sugar. Leafhopper was concerned this would be too roasted based on appearance, but going off of the notes and my taste, this is definitely on the floral greener side of fruity and roasted.

Roasts are meant to enhance the flavors of the tea, and this one showcases it. It has no hints of charcoal whatsoever, and is very similar to the Jasmine Scented Shan Lin Xi they sell, and that I regret not getting more of. That one is a staple for me right now. Going back to this one, I’ve followed their methods of 55,45, 50, and it’s very heavy on honey, florals, and jasmine with a bit of a sweetness like raw sugar. Longer steeps has a slightly heathered profile, shorter ones are more floral and surprisingly just as viscous. It doesn’t really evolve passed steep 4 or 5, but it keeps on delivering flavor. The tea is super stemmy, so it’s naturally very sweet with large leaves.

I actually like using less leaves for more western sessions so far even though it’s fun to play with gong fu. I’ve only experimented a little with the end of two gong fu sessions with it, but I’ll write more when I brew this tea mug style. I’m not ready to rate it yet, so I’ll end with a positive note that this is my kind of light roast oolong.

Flavors: Floral, Fruity, Honey, Jasmine, Nectar, Orchid, Sweet, Tannic, Viscous

Leafhopper

I’ve definitely had the best of intentions not to buy tea and then caved when there was a good sale or when I found something I “needed.” I’m glad this tea isn’t too roasted, and your comparison with the Jasmine SLX gives me hope I’ll enjoy it.

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Really pleasant oolong whose light roast character seems to have faded since Daylon made a note, or maybe I’m not as sensitive.

Feels good in the mind and body. Floral dreaminess. Very sweet chestnut aroma and taste. Darker taste but still light and grassy. Cooling. Salty tingle.

I couldn’t brew out the leaves one session so jarred them with water in the fridge. The resulting cold brew was packed with flavor and sweetness.

Thanks for the share, Daylon <3

Flavors: Cherry Blossom, Chestnut, Coconut, Floral, Grass Seed, Malt, Menthol, Mineral, Narcissus, Nutmeg, Peach, Salad Greens, Salty, Squash, Sugarcane, Sweet, Toasty

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 tsp 3 OZ / 100 ML

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80
drank Shan Cha Black Tea by Wang Family Tea
1577 tasting notes

Captain’s Backlog, Tea Date 25 April 2023

Steeped western but no notes made on parameters. Smooth and dark dark dark malt with some dark wood tannins. Strawberry preserves, rose, artichoke undertone. Dark. Dark fruits. More aromatic than flavorful. Leafhopper said she like this a bit less than What-Cha’s Wild Shan Cha; I think I like this one a little more despite not paying much attention. Maybe that’s the key to my appreciation for these Taiwanese native specie black teas. This seemed a little fuller and rounder, like there’s a more substantial body to connect the strong aromatics to the taste.

Flavors: Artichoke, Blackberry, Dark Wood, Dried Fruit, Floral, Fruity, Jam, Malt, Malty, Rose, Smooth, Strawberry, Tannin, Woody

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90

Wang generously included a 25 g bag of this tea as a free sample in my last big order. I’d nearly ordered it on my own, so needless to say, I was happy to see it. This tea is from spring 2022. I steeped 6 g of leaf in a 120 ml porcelain pot using boiling water for 55, 45, 55, 65, 75, 90, 120, and 240 seconds, plus some long, uncounted steeps.

The dry aroma is of orchid, osmanthus, honeysuckle, coconut, and grass. The first steep has notes of orchid, osmanthus, honeysuckle, freesia, butter, grass, and cream. Like the unscented Alishan, it’s woodsy with a slightly vegetal aftertaste. The second steep really opens up, with coconut, honeydew, more osmanthus, fruit tree blossoms, honeysuckle, gardenia, lemongrass, pine, petrichor, minerals, and grass. The bottom of the cup smells really sweet, a bit like floral honeydew, although the tea itself is not too sweet. I assume this is what osmanthus smells like. The next couple steeps feature coconut, lemongrass, sugar cookies, spinach, and grass, and that distinctive osmanthus flavour. Steeps five and six still have lots of heady osmanthus florals, although the vegetal nature of the Alishan is showing through. I get petrichor and mineral notes along with the spinach and grass. The end of the session is vegetal and persistently floral, with freesia and orchid being noticeable.

I usually think of scented teas as having lower-quality base material, but this one proved me wrong. I liked it even better than their excellent regular Alishan because of the addition of the osmanthus, which made the tea even more floral and fruity. The osmanthus was a wonderful complement to the somewhat vegetal Alishan and truly enhanced the drinking experience. Daylon, some of this will be in your box!

Flavors: Butter, Coconut, Cookie, Cream, Floral, Fruit Tree Flowers, Gardenias, Grass, Honeydew, Honeysuckle, Lemongrass, Mineral, Orchid, Osmanthus, Petrichor, Pine, Spinach, Sweet, Vegetal

Preparation
Boiling 6 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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52

Bottom of the bag. The dregs. This will steep differently than the top. The leaves are quite a bit more broken compared with other Wang Family Oolong. Which isn’t a bag thing but it then does require one to have an infuser nearby to catch the extra leaves. Aromas of plum, tropical fruits, minerals. The flavor is mineral. It does get a bit tannic if left for too long. The mouth feel is smooth but has astringency. Appreciated with blacks but not with oolongs, not even the roasted ones. Perhaps I got a bad batch. I would be willing to try this one again to see if my batch just ended up as a mistake or soemthing.

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75
drank Red Jade Black Tea by Wang Family Tea
1577 tasting notes

Argh, I didn’t take notes. Prepared the same and in same pot as Floating Leaves’ Ruby 18 Black. I recall this being more muddled in taste and a little more astringent and tannic especially later; darker forest floor vibe but not nearly as strong as in The Tea’s Yuchi Competition Grade Ruby 18 Black Tea. Plenty of tomato-malt and wintergreen for me though :)

Thanks again, Leafhopper!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 3 g 4 OZ / 110 ML

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80
drank Dong Pian by Wang Family Tea
676 tasting notes

This tea surprised me quite a bit. It‘s the first Taiwanese oolong I’ve ever had that tastes exactly like Tie Guan Yin. The familiar creamy orchid and vanilla notes of TGY greet you at every steep. On the bright side, it’s not obnoxiously floral like TGY can sometimes be. It has a thick, lingering aftertaste and lasts through several steeps. The flavor more or less is the same after every steeping.

It was nice having a Tie Guan Yin type tea again but I prefer the more subtle florals, layered flavor and texture of a real gaoshan.

Flavors: Custard, Orchid, Vanilla, Violet

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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95

I love Sun Moon Lake. But I never knew it could be this good. The dry leaves is big and dark chocolate in coloring. The woody notes are reminiscent of our deep coniferous forest of Northern Minnesota but also of the mossy redwood forests. It is smooth with just a bit of astringency. It finishes with a clean note that leaves you feeling refreshed. After steeping the leaves are a mix of olive green and milk chocolate.

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