Organic Hong Yu T-18 White Tea Cake, Lot 742

Tea type
White Tea
Ingredients
Organic White Tea Leaves
Flavors
Autumn Leaf Pile, Berries, Bitter, Cranberry, Cream, Dried Fruit, Floral, Honey, Lemon, Malt, Menthol, Mineral, Raisins, Sarsaparilla, Tannin, Tart, Wood, Flowers
Sold in
Not available
Caffeine
Not available
Certification
Organic
Edit tea info Last updated by derk
Average preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 1 min, 30 sec 5 g 7 oz / 210 ml

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4 Tasting Notes View all

  • “This is my first time trying pressed tea! Thanks, Derk, for sending me something I had previously considered buying from the TTC website. If there’s a trick for breaking these things without making...” Read full tasting note
    83
  • “Thanks so much, derk!  I kind of ruined this one though.  I don’t know what happened.  Maybe the water needs a filter change.  Possibly used too many leaves, not realizing how much a white cake...” Read full tasting note
  • “When I open the bag, I get hit in the face with wintergreen but it’s nonexistent in taste. It’s mostly autumn leaf and mineral with honey sweetness and florality that are muted, a hint of malt. ...” Read full tasting note
  • “The ever generous derk sent me a sample of this because I got the tea drunkest I have ever been tea drunk off of a white Ruby Jade that she sent me a while back. I have always loved – and been...” Read full tasting note

From Taiwan Tea Crafts

Not many white teas are produced in Taiwan, if any, even less using this particular cultivar. We will take full responsibility for treading new territory in tea making as this a true house tea: it was made in our family’s own factory using leaves from our own Red Jade garden. Furthermore, if there was ever one tea that we could label “handmade” this would be it! These leaves have not encountered any form of machinery in the making of it. Similar to a Chinese Shou Mei white tea, young leaves were hand-picked, gently laid to wither, hand-fluffed to stimulate a light oxydation and desiccated to lock-in their lush fragrance. We couldn’t help to think that this tea would be a perfect candidate for our first ever series of tea cakes. If drunk fresh and if you are familiar with Red Jade Black Tea, you will be surprised by the striking aromatics of this tea. The fresh eucalyptus, cinnamon and camphor-like coolness is truly heady. The liqueur is sweet, thick with a nice dry tannic quench. We can also attest that aged black teas made from this cultivar are simply stunning. We firmly believe that you will eventually be very pleasantly surprised if you are patient enough to let the hands of time transform this cake into a different delight. Available in a very limited run of 125 mm cakes of 100 g and proposed in a vacuum-sealed resealable pouch.

About Taiwan Tea Crafts View company

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4 Tasting Notes

83
284 tasting notes

This is my first time trying pressed tea! Thanks, Derk, for sending me something I had previously considered buying from the TTC website. If there’s a trick for breaking these things without making a mess, I don’t know what it is, but I eventually took about a gram off my big piece of this cake so it was around 6 g. After a rinse, I steeped it in a 120 ml teapot at 195F for 10, 12, 15, 18, 20, 25, 30, 40, 50, and 60 seconds, then 1:15, 1:30, 2, 3, 5, 7, and 10 minutes.

The dry aroma is of faint berries, honey, and malt. The giant piece of cake stuck out of my teapot, so I did a 15-second rinse to try and soften it up enough to make it fit. It had faint notes of tart gooseberry, honey, and dried fruit. I could smell menthol in the teapot but couldn’t taste it. The first real steep has notes of menthol, autumn leaf pile, dried fruit, honey, and minerals, plus a long wintergreen aftertaste. This is absolutely a Red Jade tea! I get more of the tart cranberries and gooseberries in the next three steeps, along with menthol, tannins, lemon, vague florals, and increasing bitterness.

By steep five, this tea is asserting its black tea character, with the menthol predominating and malt, autumn leaf pile, cream, and hints of fruit in the background. By steep seven, I get woody and incense notes, plus sassafras, raisins, berries, and dried fruit. Near the end of the session, the menthol notes disappear, leaving malt, dried fruit, wood, minerals, autumn leaves, and lots of tannins.

I found this tea to be a fascinating expression of the Red Jade cultivar, with the typical menthol and sassafras notes but a lot more fruit than the standard black tea. Although it did get bitter at times, I think the short steeps helped tame it somewhat. (However, like my last white tea, all those short steeps made for a longer-than-usual session.) Although I’m not sure I need an entire cake, I might keep my remaining sample to see if it changes with age.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Berries, Bitter, Cranberry, Cream, Dried Fruit, Floral, Honey, Lemon, Malt, Menthol, Mineral, Raisins, Sarsaparilla, Tannin, Tart, Wood

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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3521 tasting notes

Thanks so much, derk!  I kind of ruined this one though.  I don’t know what happened.  Maybe the water needs a filter change.  Possibly used too many leaves, not realizing how much a white cake would expand.  But the flavor was bitter all the way through.   Hints of lemon in the second cup, but then bitter again.  I was VERY tame with my steeps, so I don’t know how this was so bitter. Then there were some strong chemicals being used in the house that smelled very strongly, so I didn’t want to risk ingesting these weird chemicals that may have floated onto the damp tea leaves for a third steep, so I sadly had to discard the leaves.  I wouldn’t have bothered to even write a note for this, but now it’s gone, so I had to write something to acknowledge the sad ruining of this tea.  Both by user error and possibly chemicals.  mrgh. I won’t rate this one because it doesn’t seem fair. Derk’s tasting note said ashmanra had more success with this one, but I say derk had more success than I did. AND I’m even more sad about it because ashmanra’s note says this is the white counterpart to Ruby 18… I love Ruby 18 so I would have really loved not to ruin this one.
Steep #1   // 47 minutes after boiling  // rinse // 1 minute steep
Steep #2  // 47  minutes after boiling //  1 minute steep
2020 Sipdowns: 77

eastkyteaguy

I have a lot of trouble with Ruby 18 white teas too. I know that they are starting to gain in popularity, but I have not been able to get into them. I have difficulty getting consistent results each time I try to brew some. I feel like I’m just missing something and have to be doing something wrong. I don’t know what I could be screwing up though.

Dustin

That’s how I feel about oolongs. It’s rare that I find one I like and watching people really get into and enjoy them make me feel like I’m missing out. Not sure where I’m going wrong!

tea-sipper

Thanks for the reassurance that this type is finicky — it makes me feel a bit less badly about ruining my sample.

derk

Sorry you had a bitter experience!

tea-sipper

Certainly not your fault, derk! :D

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1093 tasting notes

When I open the bag, I get hit in the face with wintergreen but it’s nonexistent in taste. It’s mostly autumn leaf and mineral with honey sweetness and florality that are muted, a hint of malt. Can’t place the flower — it almost reminds me of baby powder, maybe gardenia past its prime? Flamboyant this tea is not. It would be good when I’m in the mood for an understated brew. Regardless of its lack of overt character, this makes a fine autumn cup. I’ll have to come back to this one, and I will because I have a whole cake, haha. Stuff the tiny teapot and see what it has to offer. It seems ashmanra had some success 9 months ago.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Flowers, Honey, Malt, Mineral

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 2 min, 30 sec 3 g 10 OZ / 300 ML

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2559 tasting notes

The ever generous derk sent me a sample of this because I got the tea drunkest I have ever been tea drunk off of a white Ruby Jade that she sent me a while back.

I have always loved – and been fascinated by – Ruby 18 black tea and I am now in love with its white counterpart.

We settled in for a cross-legged gong fu floor session with the King Of Dogs. Same pairing as last night: garden herb Triscuits with warmed cheddar and topped with apricot preserves and tiny pecan tartlets. This is why the King of Dogs stayed so close. (His name is Sam.)

It is here that an unfortunate accident happened. While rinsing, the new gooseneck kettle to which I am not yet fully accustomed made a sideways splash in the gaiwan lid and a tiny bit of hot water went on his paw! Though he scampered behind me, it did not deter him from staying as close to the cheese as possible. Needless to say, he received many kisses and hugs and cheese and pecan tart. He now stays close but leans back when I pour, which is good but also will be awkward to explain when guests come.

On to the tea. The liquor is golden amber. Body is medium light. The first steeps have very fruity wine notes. There is a light, passing savory base note. Very light. First impression as I swished was of rich, high fruit notes, not sharp like citrus but perhaps a little berry tartness laid over a baked fruit flavor. As we keep going, there is a hint of raisin.

We have steeped this so many times that I have lost count. Each steep grows progressively more brisk, pleasantly so for me but my husband preferred the first steeps. The color is undiminished, still the rich golden amber, reflecting beautifully in a silver lined cup. (Small Crimson Lotus one. Thank you to husband for that! It was a gift from him.)

This was very good tea and a fun gong fu session. Between this and the What-Cha, I like the What Cha one best. But this one is intended for aging, and I think it would be marvelous to see what it does in a few years time.

Thank you, derk! I am smiling and content as I head off to bed.

gmathis

Poor abused puppy :) Tazo prefers to be referred to as El Puma, Potentate of All He Surveys.

ashmanra

Oh, his cat name is very powerful! I will remember it if ever I meet him face to face!

tea-sipper

A white ruby jade?!?!?! This I have never heard of.

derk

Oh, you’re welcome. You dove right into that box!

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