• Puerhtea,  Raw,  Tea Review,  Teaappreciation,  Teainfo,  Teareview,  Yiwu

    2019 ZSL Walong/ Tea Encounter

    2019 Walong

    This tea is the 2019 Walong from Zheng Si Long, which is a company that is founded and still produced by Mr. Zheng. Mr Zheng is a Yiwu native and a Pu Erh specialist that mainly deals with Yiwu & the surrounding six famous tea mountains.

    Basic info about this special tea:

    • Dayezhong Assamica Varietal
    • 2019 Spring Tea.
    • From Walong, Manzhuan, Mengla Yunnan
    • Gushu

    Temperature of Water ( 95-100 degrees celsius)

    Brewing Vessel (100 ml Jingdezhen gaiwan)

    Grams of Leaves ( 7 grams)

    Steeping Time ( less than 10 seconds per infusion, and every  infusions increasing the time by 5-10 seconds)

    Main Info

    Number of Total Steepings: 12 strong infusions.

    Aroma of Dry Leaves: Very sweet sticky honey, with some dry fruit and banana peel. 

    Aroma of Wet Leaves: Intense sweet sweet honey, layered with a nice sandalwood spiciness with a mango undertone. 

    Taste Profile: See Below

    Texture Profile: Very bright, without much astriengency until later on in the steeps. Clear structure and very easy to understand the tea. Medium thick

    Feeling/Aftertaste: Very strong sugarcane sweetness, that lasts around 20-30 min. Body is warming, especially around the forehead and the shoulders.

    Price: 157 dollars/400 grams

    Rating 8.4 out of 10.

    Glossy, huge leaves with a really lovely sweet aroma coming off of it.
    First steeping

    First to Third steepings: Super sweet, little lilac but very pure old tree relaxing mouthfeel and throat feel with some lingering green floral that wraps barbecue pineapple. Very balance sweet subtle sheng. No smoke what so ever

    Fifth steep

    Second to Fifth steepings : mango, peach with various other subtle florals and more slight astringency that comes in the way. However it’s nicely balanced and very sweet, with lovely lasting aftertaste. Some savoury, various aromatics and balance between the base notes and higher aromas was impeccable. The best. 

    Eighth steep

    Sixth to Tenth steeping 

    More vegital, with a strength that coats the mouth and the throat. Less fragrance, but more aggression in the mouth and in the throat. The general taste is poached veggies, grapefruit skin bitterness and lemon zest. Lasting huigan for about 10-15 min.

    Eleventh Infusion

    Eleven to Twelfth steeps

    Lower register, very died down, more astringent. Slightly drying on the throat, and pretty much the very last infusions. Very light nutmeg aroma and super refreshing.

    Conclusion 

    In essence, this tea very sweet, and very enjoyable on any occasion. I personally think it could be thicker and last a bit longer, but 12 infusions is already not bad. The lasting aroma and very balanced notes were indications of the quality and meant that the leaf had potential. The energy was strong, but not too much. I would say for the value, it’s a very good choice and something I would consider having in my own collection. 8.3 /10

  • Puerhtea,  Raw,  Tea Review,  Teaappreciation,  Teainfo,  Teareview

    2015 Pin from White2Tea

    Today, I have decided to review the 2015 Pin from White2Tea. This tea was supposedly made with 2013, 14 and 15 material that resembles Lincang character. I personally found it very relaxing, easy to drink and of very high quality material. The aging brings out more of the softer notes, and intense aroma. Lets get to the actual review. 

    Quite bud heavy, silvery slightly golden buds.

     Basic Info

    • 2013, 14, 15 material 
    • 0.48 CAD per gram
    • Blended 

    Temperature ( 95 degrees celsius)

    Brewing Vessel (100 ml Jingdezhen gaiwan)

    Grams of Leaves ( 7 grams)

    Steeping Time ( less than 5 seconds per infusion, and every infusion increasing the time by 5 sec to 10 min depending on which infusion)

    Review in detail

    First brew. Lighter, but very sweet.

    (1st to 3rd steep) Relaxing, super sweet tea. Nothing off putting. Sweet potato with lemon and mint leaves, mixed with some basic, hay and honey notes. Again, not much astringency but very throaty and pleasant. The huigan is pretty great. The classic, sugary Lincang profile, nothing harsh and crazy. My back and shoulders feeling the Qi.

    Oiler, and thicker.

     (4th to 6th steep) slightly more bitter, thicker and definitely more potent. The bitterness is sweet, and brings more huigan to the palate. Minerality definitely increased, and it has a very warm effect on the body.  Definitely more action on the tongue

    (7th to 9th steep)

    7th brew.

    Slightly less bitter, but more of the Stone-fruit taste coming out. Peach, longan, cookies and oats. 

    12th brew. Less viscous but tasty and nice to drink.

    ( 10th to 13th brew) very easy to drink. Some of the sweet potato note coming back, and again… really sugary. A little bit of corn and spinach.

    14th brew: not very thick, red dates and longan in the brew. Nothing crazy but still good. Pretty much done brewing at this point. 

    Wet leaves

    Wet leaves: smells of maple syrup, roasted nuts and yogurt with fig! Sugary, again. 

    In conclusion

    This is a very uplifting and easy to drink tea, that has a lot of potential for the future. The Lincang character, this ultra sugary taste is very nice and something a lot of people will enjoy. If you like sweet and very fragrant tea, this might be the one for you. The unique balance of honey and base notes were very well done, and I think for longer term storage this tea is very capable of improving and will age gracefully. The mouthfeel is not the absolute thickest, so I don’t think it is made with Gushu material; but overall it does make it a very good tea. My final Attitude Ranking for the 2015 Pin would be a 8/10. Awesome!

  • Gongfucha,  Puerhtea,  Raw,  Tea Review,  Teaappreciation,  Teainfo,  Teareview,  XiZiHao

    2014 Da Hong Xi Ying

    Xizihao is a brand that I am quite obsessed with lately, and I am trying more and more of their teas from different years. This tea, the 2014 Da Hong Xi Yin or for short the 2014 DHXY is made from very high-end regions from the Mengla area. This tea was first produced to create a collection of supreme teas in memory of the ancient seal collections, by what I mean is the 1950s classic Pu Erh pieces ever made. Such as the 1950 Red Mark, Blue Mark, Yellow Mark, Green Mark and etc. Tony Chen decided to recreate these teas but using the best material he could obtain as well as making sure that the wrapping also is using exceptionally crafted paper.

    A small sample of this cake. Long, bright leaves.

    There were seven cakes that are part of this collection, which are the

    2014 Da Hong Xi Yin                       2014 大红囍印

    2014 Hong Yin Tie Bing                  2014 红印鐡餅

    2014 Da Hong Xi Ying (Jia Ji)         2014 大红囍印 (甲级)

    2014 Da Hong Xi Ying (Yi Ji)          2014 大红囍印 (乙级)

    2014 Da Xi Lan Yin                        2014 大囍蓝印

    2014 Da Xi Lu Yin                         2014 大囍绿印

    2014 Da Xi Huang Yin ( Shu)       2014 大囍黄印 (熟)

    5g in my gaiwan

    This time I tried the 2014 DHXY in a 50 ml gaiwan, brewed with Whistler Spring Water with 5 g of leaf. I figured that this specific 1g to 10 ml is a great ratio to begin with, being not overpowering but will make sure that the tea shows it’s true colors and will affect my body sensation.

    Basic info about this special tea:

    • 2014 Spring Tea.
    • From Government Protected Land within Walong 瓦龙, Bohetang 薄荷糖 , and Wangong 弯弓 Yunnan, China. Three area premium blend.
    • Hand picked and hand processed
    • Almost 4 CAD per gram
    • 200 – 600 year old tea trees

    Temperature ( 95 degrees celsius)

    Brewing Vessel (50 ml Jingdezhen gaiwan)

    Grams of Leaves ( 5 grams)

    Steeping Time ( less than 10 seconds per infusion, and every infusions increasing the time by 2 sec to 10 min depending on which infusion)

    Dry leaves: Looks

    Glossy leaves, golden buds and longish stems. Leaves are loosely compressed. Stone pressed.

    Dry leaves: smell

    Deep honey covered with storage notes of slightly old books added with this clean aroma of dried bed sheets. Clean clothes, fresh smell. A tiny bit smoky as well.

    Wet leaves : Smell

    Nothing harsh, very easy sweet smelling leaves with various ripened fruity aromas. No smokiness what-so-ever. Mango and passion fruit aromas from the wet leaves.

    1st brew. Amazing color from the beginning.

    1st to 3rd infusion: Lighter body, but very intense floral aromas as we expected, with notes of wild flowers and a bit of khaki peel. The throat feeling is super good, or what we call in Chinese 喉韵。However, the aftertaste starts to build after the second infusion. Not right from the beginning.

    3rd infusion. Thicker and better.

    4th to 6th infusion: Sweeter, a little bit of astringency which enhances the tea’s character. The aftertaste is really present throughout these two infusions. A little bit of a wild herbal taste coming out, but not overpowering.

    5th brew. Very nice touch of acidity that is very enjoyable.

    8th to 12th brews: Amazing brews, so buttery, so sweet.. It almost didn’t seem like a tea. It has such amazing, sweet florals combined with this mango, passion fruit taste which is slightly astringent, but quickly transforms into a deep honey pineapple sweetness that stays in the mouth for quite some time. I can tell that very premium material was selected for this tea. It’s just so easy and pleasant to drink.

    7th brew.
    Leaves expanding.
    13th infusion. Getting lighter, but still very sweet.
    The brewed leaves of this Da Hong Xi Ying.
    Such beautiful leaves, I love this tea!!

    13th to 18th brews: More buttery, still very fragrant and the tea was still strong and potent. When cooled, I get some faint mangostine and grape notes that remind of fruit juice mixes. Around the 18th brew, it has come to a conclusion that the tea was done and we couldn’t push the tea anymore.

    In Conclusion

    I like this tea, quite a lot. It has a very distinctive Yiwu vibe, as well as the leaf brews out so tenderly and not harshly. This tea is for sure a Gu Shu or 古树茶 that comes from very tall tea trees. There is barely any astringency, nor a strong bitterness. Very delicious tea. However, I would’ve liked it if the tea is a bit stronger, and can give a little more. I understand that the goal of it was supposed to resemble the tenderness of a Yiwu and more of a milder tea, but I would’ve liked it a bit stronger and a bit more potent. I would rate this tea at a 9 out of 10, just because of that part. Great tea, what so ever!

    .

  • Puerhtea,  Tea Review,  Teaappreciation,  Teareview

    2007 Five Cake Two Fish Sheng from Vesper Chan BTH

    2007 Five Cake Two Fish

        The Best Tea House, is renowned for its founder Vesper Chan and the 88 green 7542 cake, and has a branch in Vancouver that I often visited and drank tea there. Their teas have always been high quality, especially there Pu Erhs that range from the 1950 to 2018. This time, I am reviewing one of there very popular cakes that was produced in 2007, which is a Menghai blend of several different mountains in that area.

    Basic info about this special tea:

    • Dayezhong Assamica Varietal
    • 2007 Spring Tea.
    • From Lincang, Yunnan
    • Blended
    • Arbor blend

    Temperature of Water ( 95-100 degrees celsius)

    Brewing Vessel (100 ml Jingdezhen gaiwan)

    Grams of Leaves ( 7.5 grams)

    Steeping Time ( less than 10 seconds per infusion, and every  infusions increasing the time by 2 to 5 seconds)

    Main Info

    Number of Total Steepings: Over 15 strong infusions.

    Aroma of Dry Leaves: Very sweet sticky honey, with clean paper. A little trace of smoke.

    Aroma of Wet Leaves: Intense sweet sweet honey, layered with chinese tropical fruits and a little hint of herbs, but not super herbal. Some aged-fruity transitional period notes. Guava, papaya, mango… etc. Wild creamy honey smell.

    Taste Profile: See Below

    Texture Profile: Strong bitterness and astringency, definitely not a easy tea to drink. But with further aging, I suspect this tea to become quite thick and sweet, full of strength and vitality.

    Feeling/Aftertaste: Very strong sugarcane sweetness, just so numbingly sweet. The bitterness becomes so sweet, like candy. Also, the huigan lasts surprisingly a very long time.

    Price: 350 Canadian dollars/370 grams

    Rating 8.3 out of 10.

    Nice, clean crisp leaves with still fluffy hair.

    Actual Review

    The tea itself was stored in Vancouver, with moderately dry storage of around 60% relative humidity, so the tea itself has a different profile it was to be stored somewhere more humid. It also did have quite a bit of punch in the mouth, very active, and strong. I also may have used a little more leaf for the water ratio than normal, which probably made it seem more bitter. I would say that the material itself is definitely not super old gushu, but probably tea trees from arbor gardens of probably 70-100 years old. I have noticed with mostly all of Vesper Chan’s teas, the teas all have this “house taste” of intense honey and really sweet, intense huigan after you have one or two cups. This house taste was also prominent in this cake, but probably more astringent and powerful than the others.

    First infusion of the 2007 Five Cakes Two Fish. Light but nice color.
    2nd infusion. Deeper.


    Infusion 1 to 5

    Light, airy but with very creamy notes of figs, vanilla and apple blended with cinnamon and traditional “forest” taste. Very unique blending, but very well done. Classic aged Lincang taste in my mouth. The tea spreads evenly around the mouth, and the astringency isn’t super strong yet. Clean, very fine soup with a very nice lingering fragrance in the dry cup. A little drying on the throat, but other than that very pleasant overall around my body. All of the infusions from 1 to 5 had almost no difference, so every brew was consistent. There is also a hint of smoke that reminds me of factory cakes, but the smokiness is quite enjoyable.

    7th infusion. Medium mouthfeel, very sweet.

    Infusions 6-8

    Much stronger, heavier body and quite sweet. The material really started to warm me up, and it was full of fragrance that I really like. Very sweet, sticky, and has a minerally body that evaporates quickly within your mouth.

    Coats evenly along the mouth, evaporates quickly.

    Infusions 9-11

    Lighter in mouthfeel, but still has a great fragrance and a milky soup aroma. Very clean, ripe fruit aroma but with a creamy consistency. This sweet rice pudding note also is coming off of these infusions, which is a very natural, light aroma that is almost like Rice Krispy’s. Great aftertaste, very long lasting huigan. The skill of blending that Vesper Chan has is quite something.

    12th brew. Silky and sweet.
    Leaves almost exploding from the gaiwan.

    Infusions 12-15

    Getting lighter, but the bitterness is still very much a part of this tea. Notes of mandarins, berries and nuts can be found in these infusions. At this point, I felt very drunk and had the energy to run around, dance and be crazy! Man, this tea is powerful! Somewhat grassy, but was practically done by the 15th brew.

    Oily, with a nice kick of bitter!!

    Concluding thoughts.

    I think this tea is a great tea for further aging, and will definitely be different if aged somewhere more humid or hot. The astringency and bitterness was a little too much for me, and it probably will be for others. However, great mouthfeel, fragrance and texture. Such a lovely blend. Very well done.

    The Chaqi was very good, and made me quite active. I love how Pu Erh tea is not only fun while drinking, but also amazing after the session concludes. This tea does deserve a high ranking, but not super high as I did find a few points that I disliked. I think an 8.3 is a reasonable score this time ~.

  • Puerhtea,  Raw,  Teaappreciation,  Teareview,  XiZiHao

    2018 Diangu/ Xi Zi Hao Daughter Tea

    2018 Diangu,  From Xi Zi Hao Daughter Tea

    Chunk of Golden Diangu

    I have known (Xi Zi Hao) this brand of Pu Erh tea for many months, and I didn’t have a chance to try any of their teas until this year in 2019. I am very happy to be able to try these rare teas that are difficult to require here outside of China or Taiwan. . Today, I tried the 2018 Diangu, which seems to be very popular among Pu Erh lovers here in the west. After drinking it today, I realize what the hype is all about. This boujee tea, said it all!  First, I will like to share somethings about this tea.

    This tea comes from Old-Growth or Gushu tea trees within the Fengqing region, which is renowned for its ancient tea gardens and government protected areas. There is approximately 14,400 square miles of ancient tea trees in that area, and it’s also very famous for producing good Dianhong or Yunnan Black Teas. When I spoke to the owner of Xi Zi Hao, Mr. Tony Chen, he told me me that the tea comes from government protected areas of Fengqing county, and comes from trees that age between 200 to 600 years old. The oldest tea trees that is said to be alive is the King Tea Tree, or Cha Wang Shu in this protected area, and is said to be 3200 years old. This tea does not contain material from that specific tree, but you know what I am trying to refer to. The Fengqing area is pretty special, and is an area that is lush with super old tea trees.

    Basic info about this special tea:

    • 2018 Spring Tea.
    • From Government Protected Land within Fengqing County, Lincang, Yunnan, China. 凤庆茶区国有森林。
    • Hand picked and hand processed
    • 2300 m to 2900 m depending on where in that area
    • 1.23 CAD per gram
    • 200 – 600 year old tea trees

    Temperature ( 95 degrees celsius)

    Brewing Vessel (100 ml Jingdezhen gaiwan)

    Grams of Leaves ( 7 grams)

    Steeping Time ( less than 5 seconds per infusion, and every infusions increasing the time by 5 sec to 15 min depending on the infusion)

    Let’s get started with the actual review!


    XZH Diangu 7g loose


    Dry leaves: Looks

    Fat, glossy leaves with tons of golden hairs, buds looking golden already after almost a year of aging in Tainan, Taiwan.

    Dry leaves: Smell

    Green peas and matcha, very nutty and fresh aroma. Sweet, almost like a light processed Tie Guan Yin, but with more creaminess and complexity.

    7g/100ml Gaiwan. Look at those hairs!!!!

    Wet leaves : Smell

    Incredible, like a mixture between a Longjing green tea and a phoenix Dancong, creamy and fruity while being fresh! Very unique, special aroma. After some infusions, the aroma of the wet leaves change into something like lilacs and watermelon rind. Fresh, grassy, and quite green smelling.

    2nd brew


    1st to 3rd infusion: Lighter sweetness, bitter, but very long mouthful. Rich, mouthwatering sensations after the second cup. Fresh aroma, very refreshing, quenching. Green peas with a slight twist of creaminess, lilacs and white peach. So much going on, it’s so hard to pinpoint.

    6th Brew


    4th to 6th infusions: Bitter, but with a beautiful creaminess that just rounds out the bitterness, almost like a cheder bitterness. Green veggies, broccoli, and this very unique green aroma. My mouth is covered in sweetness, and is sticky. The body of the tea is incredible, mouthfeel is so strong, with an intense head and neck, as well as back 茶气 Cha Qi. The tea soup is incredibly vibrant, with lots of tea hairs floating. The bitterness can be sometimes so overwhelming, but afterwards there is a huge rebate of saliva and sweetness that comes out from the bitterness.

    7th brew! So oily!

    7th to 9th infusions: Still bitter, but less peachy. More of the honey notes starting to come out, with a slight tang. The more I drink, the sweeter it gets. The bitter sweet is very rewarding, and it makes you want to drink more. I was also afraid that the tea hairs would mean that the tea would be harder to drink, and would make my throat uncomfortable… but this was not the case. Very nice throat feeling.

    11th and 12th brew

    Even after 12 brews, so much fluff! Crazy tea!

    10th to 12th infusions: I pushed the 11th infusion up to 6 min, and the tea soup was bitter, yet sweet and was incredible. Such unique aroma and relaxing taste. Citrus fruit with golden peas. Creamy as well.

    13th to 15th infusions: Light, but still the tea taste is noticeable. I pushed the 15th infusion for 10 min. Not as bitter, but still a noticeable tea taste and is very refreshing to drink. Umami, seaweed, and some plum.

    16th infusion: I brewed it for 15 min, and the tea soup was pretty much done. No more aroma coming off, just a sweet mineral taste and a slight bit of astringency.

    Huge leaf and stem combo!
    Beautiful leaves. This is really nice material.

    In Conclusion

    This Diangu is incredibly potent, and is for sure not a beginner’s tea. If you cannot tolerate bitterness, this tea is meant for you. That being said, if you are already use to Pu Erh and can handle some levels of bitterness and strength, this tea will be your soulmate. With such potency, it’s very easy for one to remember this experience. Also, this tea has such a unique flavor profile, and it is for sure not a flavor that everyone will love. I, personally like this tea very much, and it’s unique green, fruity flavor but that’s not everyone’s liking. Some may say it is too fruity for them, or too strong.. Etc.

    However, because of such high-grade material and it’s very unique body feeling and strength, I would give it a 9.4 /10. I want to personally thank Mr. Chen for sourcing and producing this tea, and I am very excited to try the 2019 Diangu as well. It was a very enjoyable session, with great material and very surprising tasting notes!

  • Ecocha,  Jinxuan,  Oolong,  Taiwan Tea,  Taiwanese Tea,  Tea Review,  Teaappreciation,  Teareview

    2017 Premier Crop Organic Jin Xuan Oolong

    This is my third tea from Eco-Cha that I am very honored to review here on Tea Reviews with Shinzo. Andy expressed about how surprised he was about this tea, especially for it’s unique mouthfeel and character.  Let’s dive straight in and analyze this tea!

    Olive green, and is very vibrant. Smells super green.

    Basic info about this special tea:

    • Jin Xuan Oolong Varietal
    • 2017 Winter Tea
    • From Songbolin, Taiwan
    • Premier batch
    • 400 m above sea level.

    Temperature ( 90 degrees celsius)

    Brewing Vessel (150 ml Jingdezhen gaiwan)

    Grams of Leaves ( 6 grams)

    Steeping Time ( less than 15 seconds per infusion, and every  infusions increasing the time by 20 seconds after the second brew)

    Main Info

    Number of Total Steepings: Over 5 strong infusions.

    Aroma of Dry Leaves: Veggies, green pepper. Floral spiciness, with a splash of fresh milk

    Aroma of Wet Leaves: Fresh artichoke, somewhat savory

    Taste Profile: See Below

    Texture Profile: Super sweet and delicate, if you push the tea enough, it will become very thick and creamy.

    Price: 29 dollars/75 grams

    Rating 6.8 out of 10.


    1st brew: Very light, but full of aroma and robust flavor.

    1st infusion; Light, but clean. Extremely easy to drink, and tastes full. The aroma is most present in this infusion. Notes of green beans, fresh avocado and some pistachios. Very soothing. Light, creamy and very soft.

    2nd brew: Less vibrant, more grassy and punchy.

    2nd infusion: Wow. The mouthfeel changed completely. While the fragrance seemed to buzz off a bit, the mouthfeel is super thick and rich. The savory character is also very nice, creating more of a brothy feeling than a tea feeling. A little sea foody, but not sticky or anything. It’s just got some strength and richness.


    3rd brew: Color changed, and so did the taste.

    3rd infusion: This infusion was also very unique, as the bitterness started to welcome me and reminded me of how much strength these leaves have. Notes of very green veggies, like spinach or kale were also prevalent.  The bitterness adds more complexity and enjoyment to the experience. I very much enjoy the freshness but also how much strength and power this tea reveals in every infusion.


    4th infusion: Similar in the sense that the tea has a lot of strength, but the fragrance is really starting to fall off the cliff. But, in return, the sweetness has become even better and is really nice.

    4th brew: Thick, and is very soothing.

    5th infusion: The tea becomes fairly basic, and the freshness of the tea starts to become dull. Notes of stewed vegetables, broccoli and the taste becomes slightly sour. It’s not that it’s become bad or anything, but just not my style.


    In conclusion.

    Beautiful!

    It’s a very interesting tea, because of its nature of being so green and fresh yet having so much to give. It reminds me more of a Japanese sencha than of a Taiwanese oolong. I feel this tea works great especially in the mornings, as it’s slightly milder than a green tea but still greatly resembles one. Nothing crazy, but a nice tea to begin the day with. I would suggest people to experiment, and see what you like the best. If you want to extract more of the aroma, perhaps decrease the temperature and brew for slightly longer. On the other hand, if you want more of the mouthfeel, you can brew it with hotter water and fairly quick steepings. You cannot really over-brew it, which is really nice for people that wishes to brew more care-free.

  • Teareview,  White tea

    2018 Nightlife

    This is a White Moonlight, which is a type of white tea made with a different cultivar than usual called Camellia Taliensis. The processing is also quite different from your average white tea; and thus creates a very different tasting profile compared to many white teas from Fujian. Although it has many similar characteristics to Yunnan-made white teas, the tea has its own sticky, citric and sort of medicinal character that is unique to this tea. Some argue that this is a pu erh, and some say its a white tea. However, I am no expert so I have no free will to comment on this. The most important aspect to any tea is the actual experience and the taste.

    This tea was made by White2tea, and they mainly sell Puerhs, but also deal with White, Oolong and Black teas.

    Quite bud heavy, rich tea. Looks very clean and pure. Almost like a fresh Raw Puerh.


    Basic info about this special tea:

    • 2018 White Moonlight (Yue Guang Bai) Tea
    • Camellia Taliensis
    • From Yunnan, China.

    Temperature ( 90 degrees celsius)

    Brewing Vessel (100 ml Jingdezhen gaiwan)

    Grams of Leaves ( 7 grams)

    Steeping Time ( less than 5 seconds per infusion, and every infusions increasing the time by 5 to 15  seconds depending on infusion)

    Main Info

    Number of Total Steepings: Over 13 strong infusions.

    Aroma of Dry Leaves: Sour apple, apricot smell with some creaminess

    Aroma of Wet Leaves: Rich, deeper honey, some spiciness, smell of cold patches; like root beer. But not very very strong root beer smell, only a hint. Vanilla as well. (Sorry to all root beer fans;(

    Leaves after the first brew. Olive greenish brown tones.

    Taste Profile: See Below

    Texture Profile: Different with every brew

    Feeling/Aftertaste: relaxing and very natural. Spicy and slightly medicinal aftertaste.

    Price: 35 dollars/200 grams

    Rating 7 out of 10.

    First infusion: Bright, and just started to breath.

    First to Third infusions : Light, sweet, warming. Notes of hay, apricot, but not much else going on. Mostly focused on the texture and mouthfeel. The finish especially on the third brew is quite drying.

    Fourth to Seventh infusion: Richer, and more texture, medium to medium thick body. Taste of medicinal honey, apricots, and the classic Yunnan white tea taste. But, the finish is still dry. Cooling gan sensation on both sides of my mouth, and back of my throat. Every infusion is very consistent, and you can push this tea without getting bitter. Slightly astringent, which makes you want more.

    4th brew. Deep color.

    Eighth to Tenth Infusions : Soft, silky tofu with honey and almonds. Nuttiness coming out.

    Eighth brew. Very consistent color throughout.

    Eleventh to Thirteenth Infusions: Acidic, soft, velvety, and super easy drinking. But, no more tea taste.

    In conclusion
    This tea is a good, daily drinker. Price to quality ratio is very fair, and I am excited to see the progression this tea will take over the years as it ages. Aged White Moonlight should give more oomph and more character to satisfy the senses. Nothing crazy in this tea, a very good easy drinker that is soft on the pallet. I am also curious to see the outcome of this tea; cold brewed. The higher notes of the tea should reveal better that way, and not much of the astringency should reveal.  This tea is ideal for people that are not very comfortable to spend a huge amount on tea and like teas that aren’t too strong yet still has a distinctive quality but want something nice and solid in their collection to drink daily.

  • Dancong Oolong,  Gongfucha,  Mei Leaf,  Teaappreciation,  Teareview

    Duck Sh*t Oolong– Yashi Dancong from Mei Leaf


    On Dec. 29th, I was asked to go to a friend’s and make some tea for them as we haven’t gotten together in a while and we were on a two weeks break. I asked my friends what tea they would like to try, and they replied with “something sweet and fun.” So I thought, why not Duck Shit from Mei Leaf— as I thought it would be the perfect tea for the occasion. Even just the name; is intriguing.

    The name, 鸭屎香, which translates to Duck Shit Aroma, creates many people to have misunderstandings that this tea will actually resemble “duck shit.” But in many cases; it’s the complete opposite. Baked notes, fresh, out-of-the oven type of smells are very common characteristics of this cultivar, and as well as floral notes, lilacs, orchid, and other sweet smelling things. It’s supposed to be delightful, and make your senses dance. The farmer who named this cultivar Duck Shit is incredibly clever, as he/she didn’t want others in the village to know how wonderfully delicious this tea can actually be.

    There are many different flavors or different cultivars/ sub-flavors/cuttings of Dancong. Such as 蜜兰香 Mi Lan Xiang,玉兰香 Yu Lan Xiang,杏仁香 Xing Ren Xiang,八仙 Ba Xian,通天香 Tong Tian Xiang, and many others. All of these names are representations of what the varietal of this type of Dancong is supposed to remind you of. For example, Mi Lan on one side is renowned for it’s very peachy, honey like taste;while the Xin Ren Xiang is supposedly very herbal and bitter, with almondy characteristics. In the future, I would love to make a blog post on the differences between these varietals, to really dive deep into the world of Dancong. My first Dancong I tried was a 东方红 (Oriental Red Dancong), and it blew me away completly. Since then, I have not incountered anything that tasted better than that one. I asked if the tea was expensive, and my friend’s mom said. “It’s Chairman Mao’s signature Oolong.” I was speechless at how vast and rich the flavors were. Now, let’s get right into the tasting of this tea!

    Duck Shit Oolong  


    Leaf
    This is from Mei Leaf’s webpage as I forgot to take pictures of the dry leaf. Upps.
    But, nice glossy leaves. Very whole.


    Basic info about this special tea:

    • Ya Shi Cultivar
    • May 2017.
    • Wudong, Fenghuang, Chaozhou, Guangdong China
    • Up to third or fourth leaves
    • 1200 m elevation

    Temperature ( 95 degrees celsius)

    Brewing Vessel (100 ml Jingdezhen gaiwan)

    Grams of Leaves ( 5 grams)

    Steeping Time ( less than 20 seconds per infusion, and every  infusions increasing the time by 5 seconds)

    Main Info

    Nice leaves. But quite green. I got very milky, soft peachy notes from the wet leaves.

    Number of Total Steepings: Over 8 strong infusions.

    Aroma of Dry Leaves: Mild, almost like dried cherries .

    Aroma of Wet Leaves: Flower Garden with peaches and a little bit of butter mixed with it. Purely unique.

    Taste Profile: See Below

    Texture Profile: The texture is sharp but not very astringent. Soft bitterness but a refreshing kind, almost like fresh citrus peel. The mouthfeel is lighter than other Dancongs I’ve tried. But still good enough to appreciate the different faces of this tea. Easy going, very friendly tea.

    Feeling/Aftertaste: Warming, slightly energising. Rising warmth or “chi” towards the heart area. Friend’s loved the warmth of this tea!

    Price:  42.5 Canadian Dollars/ 30 grams

    Rating 8.5 out of 10.

    This tea had a lot to say, but first things first. I didn’t take many pictures because I was busy pouring for my guests and was focusing on tasting. I have my tasting notes for every two infusions below.

    I tasted a lot of cream, nuts, apricots and that greenish, viny taste that I associate with a lot of lighter roasted Dancongs. Sophia, was like “Oh, it tastes so comforting.” I knew right off the bat that they all liked this one. It’s just super easy going—- easy to drink. Good for any occasion; even with sweets. I feel like this tea will go really well with sweets, especially, like those very light, cream based cakes. The first two infusions had very mild astringency and bitterness, and leaves your mouth coated with the essence of goodness.

        The third and fourth infusions of this oolong was probably the most delicious brews, as the bitterness was just right and it had a very nice heart warming chi afterwards. Me, Jenny, and Sophia all agreed that our bodies felt warm after drinking the fourth infusion. We were all enjoying the tea, to a point that no one spoke for around 5 min! Perhaps, a little tea drunk?

        After the fifth and sixth infusion, I felt extremely calm, grounding, and warm. Notes of more florals, different type of fruit maybe; almost like mandarins.

    On the eighth infusion, I pushed it hard. Added 5 min, and the tea was almost like stew, offering this herbal, very silky and smooth but nicely creamy tea soup that was a different experience as well.

    Although this tea did not blow me away completely, it still provided us with a great experience of  what quality Dancong is supposed to taste like. I just found it a little light and too green to my liking. But nonetheless, it still deserves to be called as one of my favorite lighter , more aromatic Dancongs I’ve tried. It’s also very balanced and easy to drink.

    I told my friends, “Maybe this was the best sh*t you’ve had so far.”

    LOL;)

  • Ecocha,  Gongfucha,  Jinxuan,  Taiwan Tea,  Taiwanese Tea,  Tea Review,  Teaappreciation,  Teareview,  Tieguanyin

    Tie Guan Yin Oolong- Eco Cha

    Tie Guan Yin Oolong from Eco-Cha Teas

    Basic Info about this special Tea
    From Pinglin and Muzha, Taiwan
    Half Tieguanyin/half Jinxuan varietals. 
    45 dollars/150g
    500m/300m altitude. 
    Brewing Parameters
    Temperature (95 degrees celsius)
    Brewing Vessel (Jingdezhen Gaiwan 90ml)
    Grams of Leaves ( 6 grams)
    Steeping Time ( less than 15 seconds per infusion, after the third infusion increasing by 10 seconds every infusion)
    Main Info
    Number of Total Steeps (6)
    Aroma of Dry Leaves (charcoal, ripe plum)
    Aroma of Wet Leaves ( coffee, cream, chocolate)
    Taste Profile ( see paragraphs)
    Texture Profile ( medium)
    Feeling/ Aftertaste (huigan after first infusion, cherry aftertaste)
    Attitude Rank: 7 out of 10.

     

    Dry leaves before expanding. Both Tie Guan Yin and Jin Xuan cultivars!

     

    Tea made from two cultivars intrigue me as it makes me wonder how the characteristics of the two cultivars affect each other and affect the final result. This tea, made from Tieguanyin and Jinxuan cultivars, should match very interestingly. I was excited to see how the milky aspect of the Jinxuan cultivar might affect the TGY. The results are expressed below.

    1st infusion, starting light! But nice fragrance!

    Initially strong, the tea when warm smelled like wild bushes, wood, and some dry mango. The TGY cultivar probably supported the flavors and fragrance of the tea, while the Jinxuan made sure that it’s smooth and well structured. The tea has a good amount of roasting on it, and because of the style of processing being the Muzha style, the tea has a lot of depth, strength as well as richness in the mouth. The fragrance is good, starting with a nutty, roasty fragrance and slowly changing into a dry to juicy mango. Robust, and reminds me of a Shui Xian Rock Oolong from the Wuyi Mountains. Although it doesn’t have the same rock yun or Yan Yun that I associate with Rock Teas, the characteristics of this tea is very similar; without the sweet savory turn I find in a lot of Yanchas. Boiled potato is another one, after the heavy, roasted note comes that warming, potato skin aroma that I get in a lot of Jin Xuan Oolongs.

    Getting darker! 2nd infusion

    The third brew

    The second infusion was much more thicker, rounder, and sweeter. The best infusion, as it had everything from raisins to coffee to grains, to sweet huigan that lasted ten minutes or so. Good minerality, a little drying and nice strength. Gongdaobei smells sweet, like honey and chocolate. The lid of the gaiwan had that sourness that many Muzha TGY have, with intense veggie notes.

    Third and fourth infusions in, the fragrance and aroma started to fade away, but maintains a very nice mouthfeel and huigan still persists. Nice caramel, honey, and a grainy sweetness that remains in your mouth. Very nice color as well.

    The 4th brew. Super creamy, almost zero astringency.

    Fifth and sixth infusions were definitely lighter, and by the sixth, I knew that the tea was done. There is just no flavor and thickness in the tea. Perhaps doing this tea western style might impact how the taste comes out differently. It might work better for this tea.

    Intriguing colored leaves! Half and half;)

    I think that this Tieguanyin Oolong made by Eco-Cha offers the sweetness, bite, and aftertaste that people look for in a nice dark roasted oolong. However, I expected the tea to last a little longer, and gave off a little bit more in infusions two, three, and four. It’s a good everyday type of tea, and can be enjoyed inside a larger cup or mug without worrying too much on how the taste changes on each infusion. Solid oolong for a good price!

  • Baimudan,  Teaappreciation,  Teainfo,  Teareview,  White tea

    Baimudan- From The Best Tea House Canada

    Basic Info about this Tea
    From Fujian China
    White Peony: One bud one leaf ratio white Tea
    Brewing Parameters
    Temperature (95 degrees celsius)
    Brewing Vessel (My yellow hand painted Jingdezhen Gaiwan, 100ml)
    Grams of Leaves ( 5 grams)
    Steeping Time ( less than 3 seconds per infusion, increasing by 10 seconds after the third infusion)
    Main Info
    Number of Total Steeps (6 good ones)
    Aroma of Dry Leaves ( plumy, vegital, and quite heavy )
    Aroma of Wet Leaves ( wet, leather, and like a Puerh)
    Taste Profile ( See paragraphs below )
    Texture Profile ( smooth and silky, some astringency from the first to third brew)
    Feeling/ Aftertaste ( cooling, but the tea seems to get stuck near the throat)
    Attitude Ranking: 6.5/10
    

    Silvery buds with leaves

     

    When I initially received this tea, the tea was inside a foil bag. Like the metallic bags, but I took the tea out and  placed it into a plastic bag a few days after. The tea definitely does have a lot of dust, and that was probably why the tea released it’s juices so fast. I have no previous information on the terrior, the year of picking and processing, and other facts that usually are important to analyze as well. That even said, the tea still was something enjoyable and refreshing but not my type of tea that I would enjoy everyday.

    Dark brew. Amber orange is not very common with newer white teas.

    The first infusion was dark and strong, producing a slightly astringent brew. The flavor is mild, and not as powerful as I wanted it to be. The fragrance isn’t bad, but it’s just too light. The body feels lighter than expected, despite the heavy colour. I was tasting some nuttiness but with a earthy overtone, accompanied with plums and grass. The taste did have some of the character that I associate with baimudan, but not as obvious. I almost thought it must be aged because of the colour. Man, it was so dark and quite weird! The apperance fooled me.

    Still amber orange, is it aged?

    The second and third infusions has a very pleasant cooling effect around the sides of my tongue. But, it gets dry very quickly and the flavor of the very natural, sweet, white tea taste dissipates. I don’t quite understand the reasoning behind this.
    The fourth and fifth infusions was probably the best ones out of all six. Flavor was milder, and less astringent. Calm and cool, the tea wasn’t as weird as the first and second brew. By the sixth infusion, the tea died down quite a while, and took almost 5 minutes to brew to the normal strength I like. Some honey notes, grape notes, but not as pure as a baimudan I tried before.

    The brewed leaves look quite green, so must be young! But why was the brew so dark?

    Teaheads, what could’ve I done wrong? Was it because I stored in inside a plastic bag for two weeks? Could it be that I dried out the tea? Maybe so. If I dried the tea out, I learned a good lesson today. Don’t move your teas into many storage areas, and keep it clean, dry, and out of light. It is maybe because I left the tea on my display that faces light and the tea absorbed some unwanted characteristics? This was a very good experiment on how storage affects your brew. The tea is alive, and will react to the environment quite constantly. You are able to see that the colour is abnormally dark and red for a relatively new white tea. Anyhow, was a great session to see and think about what could’ve went wrong. A cup of tea is always a reflection of the causes that was created!

     

    The reason I gave this tea a 6.5 was because for me, this tea was kind of strange. The flavors were nice but not what I was expecting. Also, the tea didn’t last as long as what I wished, and so that’s why I am giving it a 6.5. I love The Best Tea House nonetheless, and  more amazing BTH teas to come!