A few months ago, I visited the beautiful city of Mechelen (in Belgium) and one thing I had to do when I was there was paying a visit to the MIST pop-up. This is a tea shop that specialises in Taiwanese teas. It’s a shame if you don’t buy something when you are in a specialty tea shop so I bought their Seasonal High Mountain Black Tea. I’ve had it a few times since then and I felt the time was right to finally write down my thoughts about this tea.
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Seasonal High Mountain Black Tea
As I mentioned above, MIST Teas is a tea shop that focuses on Taiwanese teas. They offer teas that they bought from farmers themselves. The Seasonal High Mountain Black Tea is one of the teas they discovered while travelling through Taiwan. The batch I bought was from the 2018 Summer harvest (May 31st to be exact) and is made using the Qing Xin cultivar. It’s fully oxidised, which makes it interesting as I don’t usually go for teas like this one. It comes from the village of Meishan in the Alishan area. They even share some information about the farmer who produced this tea.
The dry leaves are long and twisted and the colour is really dark, almost black. The aroma is pleasant and refreshing. It’s fruity with citrus in the finish and a sweet undertone.
The wet leaves are not that different. They have fully opened but they are still large and I also spot some stems. The colour is dark brown and the aroma is similar to the dry leaves. Fruity and sweet citrus.
- Water 90°C
- 3g for a 90ml porcelain gaiwan
- 1 rinse
- 6 infusions
Infusion 1 (15 sec): this infusion has an amber colour. The smell is quite complex as I’m getting fruity notes in combination with citrus and a sweet undertone. The flavour is definitely fruity and I’m also experiencing some citrus towards the end. This fades out and it’s the fruitiness that is noticeable during the aftertaste.
Infusion 2 (20 sec): the colour is a tiny bit darker now. I’m starting to get the sweet undertone that I got when smelling the leaves. Fruity flavours are still dominant, but there is a warming and sweet undertone in there; it’s almost like sugar cane and warm sugar. This is, however, only very subtle. There is also a light astringency going on.
Infusion 3 (25 sec): the colour of this infusion is even darker and the aroma is really fruity. I’m not getting the sweetness anymore but it’s mostly summer fruits and citrus in the finish. The aftertaste is fruity as well. It’s not one specific fruit but it’s a more general fruitiness.
Infusion 4 (30 sec): The sweet undertone of sugar cane and warm sugar is back. This in combination with summer fruits is almost perfect! The aftertaste is sweet.
Infusion 5 (40 sec): the colour seems to be getting lighter. The sweetness is less prominent and the citrus is back. The main difference is that I’m experiencing citrus right for the start. This slowly changes into a sugary fruitiness that is also noticeable in the aftertaste.
Infusion 6 (50 sec): this one is still sweet and fruity, but not as intense anymore. It’s also becoming more astringent. It’s still really good, considering I only took 3 g for this session.
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This session was a back and forth between sweet sugar cane and citrus. The most dominant flavour was a fruitiness and this was noticeable in all infusions. It wasn’t really one specific fruit but more of a general fruitiness. There was a funny thing going on in which I either got citrus notes or a sugar cane sweetness. It was only at the end that I got them together. Not a big fan of black tea, but teas like this one have the potential to get me on the ‘dark side’. This means something so in short, it was a great session and I highly recommend this tea.
If you want to drink this delicious tea yourself, you can buy it over here.