Review: Driftwood Tea Tie Guan Yin

Driftwood Tea, Oolong Tea, Single Estate Tea, Ti Kuan Yin Tea Add comments
Sophie’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"With it's bright floral tones and rich buttery feel, it's pretty much the epitome of what a good Tie Guan Yin should be. Definitely recommended! "
Sophie’s Teaview: 9.2/10
Other Teaviews: Samantha gave it 8.7/10
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This Tie Guan Yin was harvested on a small farm in the Chinese province of Fujian in the spring of 2012. It's described as having “brightest notes of honey suckle sweetness and supremely smooth rounded florals”. The leaves have been rolled into large erratically-shaped nuggets. The floral sweetness already abounds as their aroma wafts from my sample's package. We are off to a good start!

I followed the instructions provided for “European style” brewing, infusing 3 grams of tea (about a heaping teaspoonful) in 8 ounces of water heated to 95 degrees Celsius for 2 minutes. The cup is a delicate pale gold hue. It's aroma is a fragrant mixture of honey, lilac and rose. Taking a sip, the top notes are buttery and mineral. What follows is very sweet, featuring stone fruit as well as floral notes. The aftertaste lingers pleasantly on the tongue. The feel of this tea is very rich and creamy, bordering on syrupy.

Driftwood recommends steeping subsequent cups one minute more each time. So I brewed the leaves again for 3 minutes. The top notes are slightly rougher and more mineral this time. The buttery aspect of the tea is now noticeable all the way through the sip, making the flavour profile a bit less sweet. Otherwise my second cup is very similar to the first.

After 4 minutes, steep number 3 is more mineral still. A touch of bitterness has developed. The delicate fruit and flower notes of the finish are pleasant enough but it's clear that the leaves are fading at this point.

I have been consistently impressed by the quality of Driftwood's teas. This is another winner. It's decadent, filling, heavy yet light. With it's bright floral tones and rich buttery feel, it's pretty much the epitome of what a good Tie Guan Yin should be to my taste. Definitely recommended!

— To purchase Driftwood Tea Tie Guan Yin, or for more specific information on ingredients or the story behind this particular tea, click here to go directly to the manufacturer's web site.

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