Down to the last few teas from a big Leafhopper swap!

I cracked the seal on a 100g bag of this tea a few months ago. Only now am I getting around to a tasting note.

Bowl tea this morning, quickly becoming my preferred method!

This is a full single leaf with spare twigs in the mix. The large leaves are not balled so they are probably best prepared how I’m rolling this morning or western steeped in a basket infuser or a larger gaiwan. They will not fit in a tiny teapot with a small mouth, nor in a regular ball infuser.

The aroma is moderate, sweet and savory with baked butternut squash, golden raisins, baked apples, brown sugar, cinnamon and a little vanilla.

The taste of the tea is very similar, mostly as a result of the aroma. The only thing I can taste without breathing in the aroma is that Si Ji Chun (Four Seasons) cultivar-specific florality and some wood. I wonder if this is tea is made with that cultivar. The liquor is thick with pectin, buttery, sweet-tangy. When I sip and breath, I get an impression of a baked mixture of butternut squash, apples and rhubarb; thinned honey, overripe honeydew and wood. The finish is vaguely fruity and leaves an after-feeling of being pleasantly sour. In the aftertaste, I get mild fresh apple, grass, white grapes and apricot. My tongue is coated with a smooth, thin layer of oil. The flavor profile really speaks to me as an autumn afternooner.

I notice I don’t get the sweats from this tea like I have from pretty much all other GABA teas I’ve tried.

So, this tea is old, probably produced in 2015 or 2016. Luckily Leafhopper had the prudence to not break the seal :) This tea tastes just as fresh as any other GABA tea I’ve had. I’m impressed! Because I really enjoy GABA teas, the 100g bag will be an easy one to sip through. Thank you, Leafhopper!

Flavors: Apple, Apricot, Brown Sugar, Butter, Butternut Squash, Cinnamon, Flowers, Grass, Honey, Honeydew, Pleasantly Sour, Raisins, Rhubarb, Savory, Smooth, Sweet, Tangy, Thick, Vanilla, White Grapes, Wood

190 °F / 87 °C 3 g 10 OZ / 300 ML

I’m glad you’re happy with this tea and that it’s stood up so well. It might have sat in my cupboard for another six years if I hadn’t sent it to you! :)

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I’m glad you’re happy with this tea and that it’s stood up so well. It might have sat in my cupboard for another six years if I hadn’t sent it to you! :)

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Eventual tea farmer. If you are a tea grower, want to grow your own plants or are simply curious, please follow me so we can chat.

I most enjoy loose-leaf, unflavored teas and tisanes. Teabags have their place. Some of my favorite teas have a profound effect on mind and body rather than having a specific flavor profile. Terpene fiend.

Favorite teas generally come from China (all provinces), Taiwan, India (Nilgiri and Manipur). Frequently enjoyed though less sipped are teas from Japan, Nepal and Darjeeling. While I’m not actively on the hunt, a goal of mine is to try tea from every country that makes it available to the North American market. This is to gain a vague understanding of how Camellia sinensis performs in different climates. I realize that borders are arbitrary and some countries are huge with many climates and tea-growing regions.

I’m convinced European countries make the best herbal teas.

Personal Rating Scale:

100-90: A tea I can lose myself into. Something about it makes me slow down and appreciate not only the tea but all of life or a moment in time. If it’s a bagged or herbal tea, it’s of standout quality in comparison to similar items.

89-80: Fits my profile well enough to buy again.

79-70: Not a preferred tea. I might buy more or try a different harvest. Would gladly have a cup if offered.

69-60: Not necessarily a bad tea but one that I won’t buy again. Would have a cup if offered.

59-1: Lacking several elements, strangely clunky, possess off flavors/aroma/texture or something about it makes me not want to finish.

Unrated: Haven’t made up my mind or some other reason. If it’s pu’er, I likely think it needs more age.

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