311 Tasting Notes
A bright, sweet, delicious Dragon’s Well.
Leaves are the usual flat green needles, a little more variable in color than the two non-organic Dragon’s Well teas that I’ve tried from them. They smell nutty.
Infused at 1 gram per 1 oz or 30 mL water in a porcelain gaiwan, water 160-170 degrees, for 30-60 second steeps, this tea yields a pale yellow liquor with excellent body, sweetness, and minimal astringency, and a mellow almost floral flavor with hints of pea. I expect 4-6 short steeps out of it at that ratio, but am now about to drink my 9th or 10th after doubling the leaf to brew for two people.
It’s not as robustly nutty and asparagus like as the Imperial Shih Feng Long Jing I bought from Jingteashop.com last year, but it is less expensive and really I’m a sucker for sweet and mellow anyway.
I really like this tea. It’s like everything black tea wants to be without the bitterness. Fruity, sweet, tart, yum. It’s flexible about brewing, and has pretty good legs.
The dry leaves are twisted and long and dark, the smell is sweet/fruity/spicy.
I start with my usual ratio of 1 g leaf to 1 oz/30 mL water, brewing gongfu with small gaiwan, water between 180 and 195 degrees, infusions 30" t0 1 minute, and repeat infusions until the flavor is gone.
The liquor is amber to red, medium body, sweet, fruity; the wet leaves more mostly intact, medium to large, and retain the strong fruity scent.
I have also ‘bulk brewed’ this one several times for my thermos to share during a workday afternoon and it’s quite popular with my colleagues.
But now my leaves are sitting in a drying gaiwan, I have no more hot water, and after only 3 infusions, I am pretty sure that there was more there to give. Sigh.
Disclaimer: I have only had one ‘oriental beauty’ tea from TenRen, and that one was rose-scented and just seemed off; I composted rather than drank it.
Brewing up a bit of this, towards the end of a batch purchased probably more than a year ago. I had loved the pouchong I bought at TenRen—my first experience of a lightly oxidized oolong—and was looking for more of the same. What a surprise! This is a darker, spicier, fruitier tea, not as earthy and toasted as the SeaDyke Ti Kuan Yin I ‘grew up’ drinking, but not much resembling the lighter TenRen tea. I keep forgetting and rediscovering it in the back of the cupboard. Shame on me. It doesn’t deserve forgetting. The spice is reminiscent of the Rou Gui I recently tried for the first time.
The dry leaf is dark, long, relatively straight but twisted around the long axis. It smells fruity/spicy already.
Brewing about 1 gram of leaf per ounce or 30mL of water in a small gaiwain, water at about 195 degrees.
The liquor is amber to reddish, sweet, spicy, but like Rou Gui, doesn’t have the really long legs of a Dan Cong or Wuyi Oolong: it’s tiring at 5 infusions, with spicy still there but more astringency and the fruity gone. Even after all 5 infusions, the leaves aren’t fully unfurled, seems like there should be more to give, but tonight a 6th infusion is pretty much just spice.
If rated on the first infusion alone, this would be a 90; on the first-through-5th, it’s lower.
This is an interesting tea I picked up at Wing Hop Fung one day—the tag on the shelf said “Many Flowers Puerh” and it was on sale, plus I could see enough of the beeng to see that there were many flowers pressed into it, and wondered what flavors they might add to the tea.
The beeng is pretty—see the photo, or see it larger here at my flickr—http://www.flickr.com/photos/debunix/3914144873/—but doesn’t have much odor, and the tea doesn’t have much flavor. My first time I infused about 1 gram of tea per ounce of water, and it was quite bland; today I brewed up a thermos-full in my Kamjove, enough leaf to fill the upper container after it was flash-rinsed, and a series of short infusions—pour-throughs—and it is still quite bland, dilute, a bit sweet, a little vanilla, a little earthy, no smoky aged flavors, no sharp herbaceous young sheng flavors.
I’m wondering if it is sheng or shu; and what I might do to try to bring up more flavor from it. Anyone else had any experience with a tea like this?
Pictures of the wrapper with a lot of info in chinese :
It says Menhuajingdian upper left on the wrapper and then Yunnan Shuangjiang Mengku Proterozoic Broad-Leaved Tea Factory, which does not further enlighten me, although the inner science geek loves the ‘Proterozoic’ in the name.
Not too expensive ($48/lb), this tea is curled and delicate, leaves smell vegetal but not strong.
5 grams tea, 5 oz/150mL water 165 degrees, infused about 30 seconds, mixed the first two infusions together as I am drinking them. The liquor is pale golden, sweet, very delicate floral flavor, with a nice thick body, hints of sweet peas, no hint of astringency or bitterness. A 3rd and 4th infusion are losing body and sweetness, some astringency coming through.
The damp leaves smelled like asparagus after the 2nd infusion, but can’t distinguish much after the 4th.
Overall, this is a nice, mellow, sweet white tea, and not too pricey as white teas go—a relative bargain.
Duplicate of this review with photos at link below (my site, no ads, no flash)