|"Robust but not over the top, it's definitely a treat for those who like heavily roasted oolongs. It features an excellent balance of toasted grains, dark cocoa and stone fruit. Recommended! "|
I first tried this tea brewed Western style, steeping a heaping teaspoonful of leaves in 8 ounces of water heated to 90 degrees Celsius for 3 minutes. The burnt orange cup has a lovely aroma, mixing the scent of baked bread and toasted grains. It provides well-rounded results, in both taste and feel. The top notes are slightly resinous in taste. The middle features toasted grains, plums and black currants, followed by a dry, smokey finish. Even if the flavours change as the tea cools, they always seem generous and well balanced – quite the feat!
I infused these leaves 2 more times, for 3 and a half and 4 minutes. The tea is more biscuity and mineral at this point. The second brew also features a pleasantly sweet, floral finish. Re-steeping is this tea seems worthwhile even if the results are not as spectacular as the first cup.
The folks at Peony Tea S suggest brewing this tea gongfu style, infusing 4 grams of leaf in 100ml of water. They recommend using an initial steep of 60 seconds, adding 30 seconds to each subsequent infusion, for up to 6 times. Brewed this way the tea is much sweeter, with more pronounced toasted bread, peach and chocolate notes, especially during the first two cups. Steeps 3, 4 and 5 are more focused on wood and tobacco flavours. I manage to pull 6 decent steeps out of the leaves, although the last infusion is a bit bland. No unpleasant side effects develop throughout the steepings.
While this tea is pricey, it has an excellent balance of flavours - it's robust but not over the top. Although it's named after a flower, the dominant notes of the profile are not floral. Rather they feature toasted grains, dark cocoa and stone fruit. It's worth steeping this tea gongfu style to get the most out of the leaves. It's definitely a treat for those who like heavily roasted oolongs. Recommended!
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