This is a newly offered Laoshan tea from Yunnan Sourcing. It’s a early first flush tea picked before their normal first flush Imperial Grade tea. Not sure what makes this one Competition Grade but the flavor has more in common with the Imperial Grade than Classic Laoshan green tea.
I steeped 2.5g in a 120ml shibo 4 times starting with 180 F water and then the temperature was raised to 190 F. The dry leaves have a pleasant aroma of cilantro, lima beans, flowers, and milk. Wet leaf smells like asparagus mingled with an oat like nuttiness.
First steep (25s): crisp and delicate with notes of soy and green bean
Second steep (30s): same but with more body. it has a nice, clean taste without the strong oat and fennel flavors that Laoshan greens sometimes have.
Third steep (40s): used hotter water than I normally do yet tea was unaffected. no drop in flavor, but it hasn’t really evolved either. still has a nice freshness to it.
Fourth steep (50s): mellows out a little bit. still smooth and tasty
As expected, this was on the softer side flavor-wise, a typical characteristic of early picked tea. It holds up very well to hot water and has excellent staying power. Though I steeped it four times, I could have easily gotten another infusion or two out of it. The flavor remained constant throughout which is both good and bad. Good because the flavor doesn’t drop so soon, bad because there’s no evolution of flavor. Although a great tea, I do slightly prefer the second flush for its less refined but more assertive flavor.
Flavors: Green Beans, Oats, Soybean