Wednesday, July 12, 2006

TN: Phoenix Mountain Lone Bush Tea (凤凰单丛)

This tea was gifted to me by a relative who got it in Guangzhou in April of 2006. I don't know which harvest vintage this was from. I could ask, I suppose, but for now we'll leave the age detail behind. It looked reasonably fresh.

Dry leaves: Observation could tell that it was a green, unfired Dan Cong. Color ranges from green to oxidized red-black caused by non-uniformity in the degree of oxidation. The long stalks were actually soft, fibrous extensions of the leaves. It smelled slightly sweet (peachy) and an aroma similar to a closet with moth balls, in a good way.

Parameters: This time around I was able to brew the tea better than before, except for the 3rd brew which I did for too long. Using a gaiwan, I filled 1/2 the bowl full of dry leaves. Arrowhead spring water, boiling. Poured high, swift rinse, and then 5s, 5s, 10s, 7s (rest).

Wet leaves: medium to dark green, many with red patches in the middle and on the edges. Beautiful aromas of floral (orchid), honey, peach, and [I swear there was] white pear nose in the background.

Liquor: Clear, medium amber. All of the aromas from the wet leaves were more or less present, though not as concentrated. Minty and cooling. Relaxing. Careful brewing prevented this tea from becoming bitter and tannic (however, I brewed too long for my 3rd infusion...too bitter and tannic. I scaled back the 4th infusion length by 30%). I got tea drunk after the 3rd round. Cha qi was noticeably present and calming. The most amazing part for me was the smell of crème brulee / caramel hiding on the bottom of the empty cup. The finish was long and lasting, with a sweet (caramel?) aftertaste in the very back of the throat. Absolutely nice!

4+ stars (pretty damn good tea in my book!)

No comments: