Origin: Wuyi Mountains, China
Vendor: Harney and Sons (Product page)
Price: $18.00 (2 oz.) / $128 (1 lb.)
Despite the constant danger of bee attacks (see above) and the smell of dog excrement (see below), I braved the outdoors again today. It's so much more enjoyable to take pictures outside! (It was so enjoyable that I completely forgot to take a picture of the dry leaves, but whatever, they weren't anything special.)
This is actually a revisit; I've already reviewed this tea, so it should be interesting to see how the two of us have changed over the last 9-10 months.
Has this tea changed at all? Not really. It tastes pretty much the same; my notes from this session are remarkably similar to those from my previous review, which I hadn't reread until just now. It's an aromatic tea, but doesn't have much depth of flavor. The smell and flavor are about the same; bright tartness and fruitiness (last time I thought of rhubarb, and I think that's still true), with just a hint of cocoa and hot spice. There is not much charcoal/roast taste, thankfully.
After reading a recent post by MarshalN, I was inspired to brew the crap out of this one. I kept going until my kettle was almost out of water, despite the tea giving up most of its flavor in the first few infusions. Of course, I'm still guilty of not taking notes about the tea after the third infusion, but to my defense this one did die rather suddenly. :) Regardless, it was nice to slow down and enjoy the surroundings (and the company) with the occasional cup of sweet tea water; I think I'll do it again next time.
Though the tea hasn't changed much at all, I think my tastes have. If I were to re-adopt my 1-10 scale, it wouldn't score as high as it did then. Perhaps I didn't brew it as well this time, but I think it's more likely that, at the risk of waxing arrogant, my tastes have become slightly more refined since then. Don't get me wrong, this is still a decent tea, I just don't think it's as spectacular as I thought before.
Did I just have a nostalgic moment? Hmm, I guess I did. Still, I can't help but think it might be nice to forget everything about tea and be amazed by the slightly-above-average stuff again. Wait for it...