Keep Moving Forward… 08.09.10

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Chǎo Qīng Lǜ Chá, 炒青绿茶, Fried Green Tea

May/June, 2020; var. Huangshan Da Ye Zhong (黄山大叶种); Qimen, Huangshan, Anhui; buds only, fixation→rolling→drying; 600m;
#TodaysTea#今天的茶#JīnTiāndeChá.
Infusion: 4g in 200ml for 10-20 sec.@90-95deg. C

Dry Leaf Aroma: nutty, bready, connamon;
Wet Leaf Aroma: vegetal, cooked broad beans, hint of tobacco;
Liquor: pale green colour, with berry faint fruity/floral aroma;
Mouthfeel: thick, viscous, creamy, a touch of minerals on the tongue tip, mild astringency, mouthwatering, with a peppery finish;
Taste: floral, orchid, mildly bready, with a soft sweet finish.

Flower Tea for “Real” Men!

For a long time I have had a dim view of flower scented teas, yet it was a flower scented tea that introduced me to the world of tea, beyond good ol’ Aussie Black Tea: that tea was Jasmine scented green tea as served at our local Chinese Food Restaurant.

Recently, in response to a request from a beer brewer, I was asked to recommend a tea for a Hopped Tea experiment that they were doing. Can you believe, I’ve been brewing beer since 2008, and whilst I intellectually knew that hops were the flowers of Humulus lupulus, it never once occurred to me to use them to flavour tea.

With recent trends in America, to market #HopTea as a summertime quencher, it makes sense to explore further the possibilities and interactions of hops and tea both as one to one fusions, in the same vein as Jasmine Green Tea, or Osmanthus Oolong Tea, as well as blends of both #hops and teas, to create new #beverage possibilities.

Presently, I am trying to answer some thorny questions by blending different teas, and various hops, to reproduce specific and known flavours in beer, but as a #nonalcoholic, carbonated beverage.

Enjoy the video, this is my first fully targeted blend: #GreenTea#OolongTea, and #DianhongTea combined with #Ahtanum#Cascade, and #Mosaic Hops.

Why am I pouring the tea back in the bottle? To look at that glorious colour in the light!

#Today’sTea, #今天的茶#JīnTiāndeChá.

Háo Yá A Hóng Chá, 毫芽A红茶, Haoya A Keemun Black Tea;

Spring, 2020; var. zhuyezhong; Qimen, Huangshan, Anhui; bud & 1 leaf,, congou black tea process; 600m.
#TodaysTea#今天的茶#JīnTiāndeChá.
Infusion: 4g in 330ml for 2-5min.@90deg. C

Dry Leaf Aroma: dried tangerine peel, dried plum, raisins, a hint of malt;
Wet Leaf Aroma: sharp, aromatic, hint of orchid, and chrysanthemum stems;
Liquor: brown-red colour with a mild aroma
Mouthfeel: creamy, moderately viscous, astringent, tannic, with a fresh, lingering and tingling aftertaste;
Taste: strong, mildly floral, mildly sweet, with an undertone of minerality.

Opinion: This is a strong robust tea, with a distinct, characteristically, “Black Tea” taste without the strong spicy-floral notes of some other astringency-forward black teas.

***This tea was provided by the Anhui Keemun Black Tea Development Co. Jenny Jiang

Yě Shēng Lǎo Yīng Chá, 野生老鷹茶, Wild Eagle (Herbal) Tea

Spring, 2021; Litsea cubeba; Ya’an, Mending Shan, Sichuan; leaves & occasional stems, pan fried; 700m
#TodaysTea#今天的茶#JīnTiāndeChá.
Infusion: 2.3g in 115ml for 1-2 min. @90deg. C

Dry Leaf Aroma: milk chocolate, cotton candy, honey, malt, hint of peach;
Wet Leaf Aroma: soft green vines, mildly spicy;
Liquor: golden amber colour with a bready, biscuit-like aroma;
Mouthfeel: viscous, syrupy, creamy, stimulating, sweet, slight prickly dryness in the back of the throat;
Taste: pleasant, slightly spicy, herbal, honey-like, with a lingering sweet finish;

Opinion: Laoying, Eagle/Hawk Tea is a herbal tissane made from the Chinese Mountain Pepper bush, which grows wild, around Ya’an, on Mending Mountain in Sichuan Province. It is frequently served as a digestive after spicy and oily meals, and its medicinal properties assist blood sugar regulation in the case of diabetes and helps to regulate and control lung (such as asthma,) throat, and sinus issues. All in all, it is a very pleasant tasting, and enjoyable, herbal tea.

***This tea was provided by 小懒猫(Liu Lin) of Sichuan Tea Farm.

Goú Lǐ Heī Qí Mén Hóng Chá, 国礼黑祁门红茶, Keemun Black Tea (Gouli Congou Tea)

Spring, 2021; var. zhuyezhong; Huangshan, Qimen, Anhui; bud & 1 leaf, withering→rolling→oxidation→drying → refining, congou processing breaks the leaves to 8-10 mm length; 600m;
#TodaysTea#今天的茶#JīnTiāndeChá.
Infusion: 4g in 150ml for 20-25sec. @90deg. C

Dry Leaf Aroma: malty, floral;
Wet Leaf Aroma: aromatic, sharp, piney;
Liquor: brown-red liquor with golden surface ring, as well as a notable floral, and palm sugar fragrance;
Mouthfeel: moderate body/viscosity, astringent, tingling, stimulating, sweet,
Taste: mildly smokey, spicy, honey sweet, with floral hints of lavender;

Opinion: This is the first #Keemun tea that I have tried. It seems to have a latent minerality that underpins the more dominant floral notes, as well as a mild, pleasing astringency. It drinks well, both when hot, and when cool.

***This tea was provided by the Anhui Keemun Black Tea Development Co. Jenny Jiang

Hóng Chí Chá Shì,Jīng Pǐn Pǔ Ěr Chá Gòng, 竑祺茶室,精品普洱, 茶貢, Hung Chi Tea Room, Boutique Pu’er Tribute Tea

1982; var. assamica, and/or Qimao( taliensis); prepared in Menghai, Yunnan, packaged in Hong Kong, stored in Kunming, Yunnan; bud & 3-4 leaves, Menghai Wò Duī(握堆) Shou Pu’er process; 1800m; #TodaysTea, #今天的茶, #JīnTiānDeChá.

Infusion: 5g in 150ml for 30sec.@90-95deg. C

Dry leaf aroma: dusty, dank, old;
Wet leaf aroma: old wet carpet, must, dank, hints of peppery spice;
Liquor: deep red colour with dank, dry, musty aroma;
Mouthfeel/Taste: peppery, viscous, oily, with a mildly camphor or mint-like fresh finish;
Flavour: dusty, fresh, a vague touch of sweetness with a retronasal suggestion of swamp water.

Opinion: After a first disappointing tasting of this tea, I shifted it to a xisha clay storage canister and drank this tea with a friend, who thought it was very good. This highlights one of the core issues with well aged pu’er teas, their dark murky character is not considered suitable as, tea for beginners. It definitely needs to be shared with an experienced Pu’er tea drinker.

Yā Shǐ Xiāng: Yín Huā Xiāng Weì Dān Cóng Chá, 鸭屎香: 银花香味单丛茶, (Phoenix Mountain) Duck Shit: Honeysuckle Fragrance Dancong Tea

Spring, 2021; var. yashixiang; Pingkengtou, Fenghuang, Chaozhou, Guangdong; hand picked and processed, 950m; #TodaysTea#今天的茶#JīnTiāndeChá.
Infusion: 3.4g in 150ml for 50sec.@95deg. C

Dry Leaf Aroma: dry biscuit, honey suckle, mildly spicy and aromatic;
Wet Leaf Aroma: nutmeg, black pepper, ginger;
Liquor: brassy yellow with an aromatic honey scent;
Mouthfeel: creamy, luscious, tingling, sweet, and late, latent minerality;
Taste: spicy, sweet, almost milky, with a stimulating fresh finish, and lingering retronasal honey biscuit aroma;

Opinion: This Tea genuinely benefits from a longer Brew time to bring out its flavors and aromas. All scent is lost when brewer for less than 40-50seconds. Traditionally called “Duck Shit Tea,” the new formalized designation is “Honeysuckle Fragrance,” I have long enjoyed this tea type, and today’s tea is very good, elegant, and lingers long on the palate.

***Tea supplied by my friend, Huang Jiliu of Yinhai Tea Industry.

Tea is more than a drink, but a lifestyle. Recommended Video

Liziqi posts some wonderful videos about an idyllic village lifestyle: the production quality is fantastic. This video shows a concept of Tea as a lifestyle and is fascination extraordinaire! Such a beautiful homage to hand crafted tea in a simple way. Well worth watching. #TodaysTea#今天的茶#JīnTiāndeChá

Fèng Huáng Shān (Mì Lán Xiāng: Fēng Mì Tián Weì) Wū Lóng Chá, 凤凰山 (蜜兰香:蜂蜜甜味) 乌龙茶, Phoenix Mountain (Honey Orchid Fragrance: Honey Sweet) Oolong Tea

Spring, 2021; var. Honey Orchid; Wudong, Fenghuang, Chaozhou, Guangdong; 300 y.o. trees, organic, hand picked, manual oolong process; 1000m; #TodaysTea#今天的茶#JīnTiāndeChá.
This tea was sent to me by my tea Tea friend in Guangdong, #引海茶业.

Infusion: 3g in 150ml for 50 sec.@95deg. C;
Dry Leaf Aroma: mild, sweet, honeyish;
Wet Leaf Aroma: aromatic, spicy, peppery, orchid, peach;
Liquor: pale yellow liquor with a mild, spicy scent;
Mouthfeel: moderate thickness, peppery, mouth watering, somewhat astringent;
Taste: floral, fruity, followed by a notable retronasal sweet spiciness, and a sweet honeyed finish.

Opinion: The wet leaves are insanely aromatic which follows thought into retronasal notes in the taste. There is also a late onset of minerality and earthiness, which I hope is a characteristic of the 300 year old, organically managed tea trees.

Jí Biān Yǒu Jī Wū Lóng Chá, 极边有机烏龍茶, Jibian Organic Oolong (Black Dragon)Tea

Summer, 2018; var. Qingxin (soft stem); Teng Chong, Yunnan; organic, Taiwan Style Oolong process; 1900-2500m. #TodaysTea#今天的茶#JīnTiāndeChá.

Infusion: 4g in 150ml for 20sec.@90-95 deg. C

Dry leaf aroma: subtle, mango, butterish;
Wet leaf aroma: strong, spicy, peppery, resinous;
Liquor: yellow, with faint, sweet stone fruit scent;
Mouthfeel: watery, metalic, viscous, syrupy, tongue coating, with distinct peppery, prickly ash tingling;
Taste: apricot, cinnamon, lingering retronasal floral , raisin, and spicy hints, underpinned by a distinct minerality, and lingering honey sweet aftertaste.

Opinion: This tea uses fresh leaves of the Qingxin Oolong (soft branch) varietal: a soft stemmed “oolong” tea tree originating in Fujian Province.

Seedlings, or cuttings were then taken to Taiwan where a distinct tea style based on this varietal was developed.

Then seedlings, or cuttings were transplanted from Taiwan into the volcanic, mountainous region of Yunnan to take advantage of the distinct minerality that underlines the flavour of this tea.