Thanks to Wymm Tea for sending me a sample!
The dry leaf of this was tightly packed, thin, and spindly, and the colour was dark green with white flecks. I put the entire sample (6 grams) in a gaiwan and gave the leaves a quick rinse before settling down into the first set of steeps. I kept the first 7 steeps fairly short, ranging from 5 to 12 seconds in 90°C water.
The first steep didn’t taste like much, but the flavour really opened up in the second and third steeps. I tasted grass and apricots, and the brewed tea was a pale amber colour. The aftertaste was long, lingering, clean and grassy — this tasted an awful lot like a green tea that had been suddenly transformed into a sheng. A few steeps in I started to notice some bitterness and astringency, but despite this, the tea was incredibly light and fruity, with a thick and nearly syrupy mouthfeel.
After the seventh steep I took a break, I brewed up a fresh pot of water, gave it a quick rinse to get the leaves warm again, and went to town. However, this second session was much bitterer to start with. Had the tea originally tasted this bitter? I didn’t think so. After a few steeps the bitterness toned down and the fruitiness returned, but I don’t know whether it was the tea that changed, or whether I did.
It got lighter over time, turning a pale yellow instead of golden, but there was still a subtle fruity flavour into the final steep. The leaves themselves smelled lovely – tart, tangy, and floral. By the end, they had greatly expanded in size and were a lovely mix of russet and olive.
Full review at: http://booksandtea.ca/2015/09/wymm-tea-sheng-and-shou-samples/