Origin: Wuyi Mountain, Fujian Province, China
Year: 2006 (?)
Vendor: Harney & Sons
Price: $18.00 (2 oz) / $128.00 (1 lb)
As you may have noticed, I have a good deal of Wuyi yancha (yancha means "cliff tea," referring to the landscape where these teas are grown) lying around. I guess I can't hide it anymore— I love this stuff. This Da Hong Pao from Harney & Sons was purchased after a recommendation from Salsero.
According to the product description, this tea is about 40% oxidized. To be honest I haven't paid all that much attention to oxidation percentages so I have no idea what this number means in terms of taste/wet leaf color/etc, but it's good to know I guess.
The dry leaf is dark, either black or dark chocolate brown. The aroma is surprisingly strong, smelling strongly of rhubarb, as well as some chocolate and raspberry. Unlike most dark roasted teas though, there is almost no charcoal aroma whatsoever. I'm not really sure what this means— I guess it's indicative of a lighter roast, but I don't really know. If any of you have any thoughts, I'd be happy to hear them.
The liquor is nice, with flavor echoing the tart rhubarb from the dry leaf fragrance. There is also a pleasant caramel sweetness, a mild dry spiciness, a light but long-lasting chocolate aftertaste, and a decent amount of body. While this tea has a lovely, round flavor profile, it seems a bit adolescent and awkward in that it is conflicted about whether its roundness should be centered around younger, brighter flavors or deeper aged ones. Still, it's good stuff, and certainly interesting despite its bold flavor. Overall, I'd give this tea an 8/10. With a bit more age (and maybe a re-roasting to give it more of a fired flavor), this tea could develop quite spectacularly.
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