A very special tea in the best sense, and quite different from other jasmine teas I have tasted.

The fragrance is overwhelmingly rich but very pleasant and memorable, so that opening the package was a real surprise for me. I could sense peaches (or apricots) and banana intertwining with the jasmine but it is a good fresh ensemble, not something stale or over the edge.

The needles are quite long so that the dosage has to be more guessed than measured. I tried to use 2 somewhat (unwillingly) sparse teaspoonfuls per 250-ml cup but perhaps I should experiment with even a bigger quantity.

The first steeping is, without doubt, most impressive. I can feel no bitterness, and I can taste the same peaches and bananas next to the jasmine. It seems to me (maybe it is only me) that this tea is very lovely, maybe at its best, when steeped at around 70-75 degrees centigrade. At that temperature, the fragrance feels closest to what I smell when I open the bag.

When the tea cools down a bit, the taste becomes even deeper and lingers for quite a long time after I have finished the cup.

Somewhat surprisingly I could taste a very slight hint of bitterness in the 2nd and 3rd steeping. Not something really irritable but many jasmine-scented white teas do not do that. Maybe it was because I have done those steepings at a slightly higher temperature, around 80 degrees centigrade. Anyway, I could taste the pine needle, as promised by many, at the end of the 2nd steeping.

I would use only superlatives for this tea but first I have to figure out whether the slight unsmoothness or, perhaps, spicy tingle in the aftertaste (in all steepings) is a pro or a con. I have felt it also in some other good jasmines but not in too many. It will certainly not discourage me from ordering more of this tea, which I definitely want to do. This tea is definitely a masterpiece, somewhat addictive and warmly recommended.

160 °F / 71 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 250 ML

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