2015 Gongmei is a tea that I got from white2tea’s March tea club. It was a nice extra to the two Milan Maocha Dancong teas featured in March.
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White2tea’s 2015 Gongmei is a white tea from 2015 (Duh!). After production, it was stored in Fujian in dry and natural conditions until 2018. Not much more information is available except the fact that it’s gongmei grade, which is a higher grade than shoumei. Gongmei consists of more buds and the leaves are a higher grade. There are four different grades of white tea: silver needle, bai mu dan, gongmei and shoumei. Silver needle is the highest grade.
The dry leaves look like your average aged white. There are all kinds of pieces from a tea cake: leaves, stalks and smaller pieces. Darker colours with some gray and brown tints. The aroma is mainly fresh hay with some sweet notes of red fruits.
The wet leaves have a different aroma. I’m getting light hay in combination with some spices. There is also a subtle sweetness. The colour is a lot darker brown after infusing the leaves. One thing that is remarkable is that the leaves feel very stiff and not that soft.
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- 90°C water
- 5.5g for 135 ml ceramic teapot
- 1 rinse
- 6 infusions
1st infusion (15 sec): very light and transparent yellow colour. I’m getting some light notes of hay at the start. I also feel that there is a kind of sweetness beneath the surface but it’s not really peeking through. The finish is a tiny bit spicy in the throat.
2nd infusion (20 sec): the colour is starting to become darker orange/yellow. The spicy notes have moved to the front and I also notice some light notes of hay. The aftertaste is showing some traces of the sweetness from the previous infusion. It’s a bit like red fruity sweetness.
3rd infusion (25 sec): the colour is even more orange now. The spices have shifted to the aftertaste again; it’s a tingling sensation in my throat. There are no dominant flavours during this infusion, only light notes of hay.
4th infusion (30 sec): the liquor has a dark golden colour and I’m getting soft notes of hay. Pleasant to drink because it’s nothing too intense. Only subtle flavours during this infusion.
5th infusion (40 sec): the sweetness becomes a bit more prominent now. It’s what you get immediately after swallowing. This sweetness doesn’t stay long but it’s very enjoyable. The hay remains noticeable throughout the infusion.
6th infusion (50 sec): not many flavours are left, only subtle notes of hay.
I recently had another white tea. I had a session with Mei Leaf’s Moonlight White. You can read my notes here.
This tea was decent but nothing extraordinary. The flavours changed quite often as notes of hay and light sweet notes took turns in showing up. I also got some spices at the end of the earlier infusions. This tea is a perfect everyday drinker but I won’t drink it when I have to celebrate something special. The flavours were a bit too subtle for me. It’s definitely affordable so you can’t expect something extraordinary for this price.
If you like aged white tea and subtle flavours, this tea might be perfect for you. It was featured in March’s white2tea tea club but it’s also available on their website.