127 Tasting Notes
I unfortunately reserved this “Reserve Tea” for a few years so I may not have the freshest notes. I kept it in the shipping box for a few years and the final few months sealed in my refrigerator
Scissor harvested vibrant green because is was slow grinded(pale/yellow color indicates “cooking” of matcha do to heat from friction of high speed grinding) on a mill is quoted at only grinding 3-5 kg/day. Sweet enough to make thin style usucha (2g to 2.5 oz water) matcha. A great matcha if you can afford it. L-theanine to boot (usually I fell hyped after matcha this knocked me on my butt, my world literally slowed down) but relatively low caffeine which was shocking I am used to other matchas being super high in energy, a possible reasoning may be first flush quality japanese tea are lower in caffeine (bitter) but high in amino acids leading to a sweeter taste.
Roasty Toasty Graham crackers come to mind with a hint of caramel, less mineral taste(what wuyi are known for) than other wuyi’s but still a great toasty oolong. Short and simple Im a fan of this one and at less than $5/oz I think its a great staple to keep in mind as a daily wuyi, but no means is this a home only reserve but for the price I think its got everything one could want in a wuyi.
Flavors: Caramel, Mineral
Camphor and Menthol are definitely the notes I get in a big way and I am not sure if I like that in my tea. Don’t get me wrong this is one of the highest quality leaf I’ve seen and the buzz I got off this one was epic. I will try to mess around with steeping times or maybe let it grow on me. Im bound to make myself like it which is why I’m holding off on a numerical rating until I get it right. Hate to say it but at the moment it reminds me of Vicks Vapo rub or a Ricola throat lozenge.
This was first High Mt. Oolong and I saved it until I bought my first gaiwan/yixing. Still on the hunt for a yixing but I finally bought a gaiwan from rishi so here we go. I can completely understand after steeping it why they suggest and thankfully I saved this for a gaiwan. I followed rishi steeping instructions and the first steeping was fairly light but smooth the second I got hints of passionfruit. The third, fourth and subsequent infusions were exceptional smooth and floral followed by ….. Five minutes later a head rush buzz that forces a smile on your face. By far my favorite part about this oolong is the buzz it gives you lol( for that matter just about all rishi oolongs give a buzz but this one especially). All and all its a delicate, calming experience and definitely what I would call a “home tea” meaning only brew it at home when you have time to brew it correctly and enjoy the full experience(aroma, flavor, feeling). I would not recommend brewing this western style or in a tumbler on the go you will miss the subtle joy of this guy. That being said don’t buy it and and reserve it (for 3+ years like me lol) just because it is a “Reserve Tea”. I can only wonder what it could have been if I had opened it earlier.
Flavors: Butter, Flowers, Gardenias
Wasn’t sure about this concept an “earl grey” oolong, in fact it was in my stash that i stowed away and forget about. Stumbling about the bag I saw the “expiration date” was nearing (purchased a bunch of rishi tea when i first was introduced to tea 3-4 years prior) so I figured now was a good of time as any to try it.
After just one steeping in im gaiwan I was hooked. I never actually tasted real bergamot oil before only artificial flavorings and scents or somethings other earl greys have included random citrus as a cheaper substitute(orange, lemon, etc). This stuff is the real deal you get that unmistakable zesty bergamot flavor and relaxing scent with the creamy smooth mouthfeel of the oolong. The oolong by itself is super high quality the leaves are big vibrant green and whole pieces but with the inclusion of the best bergamot essential oil you will find. I am a traditionalist(no flavors artificial or natural, no fruits inclusions, no rooibos/herbal etc) but this is one non-traditional tea I will most certainly purchase again. If