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Three or four months ago, a friend of mine mentioned that The Essence of Tea subscription service is pretty good. Unfortunately, I had never heard of this store before so I did some research. I was surprised by the tea and teaware they have on offer so the first thing I did was subscribing to the tea club. I also saw a really beautiful Yixing F1 teapot from around 1977-1982 and bought it. When I got the package, I found a sample inside and that sample was their 2019 Spring Singularity Gushu sheng puerh tea.
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2019 Spring Singularity Gushu
In order to produce this tea, they took two types of ancient tree maocha they had offered in their earlier tea club packages and blended them together. The combination of these two teas ‘was greatly in excess of the sum of the parts.’ I think you get why I was excited to try this one.
The colour of the dry leaves is dark green and brown. I see stalks, smaller leaves and white buds. The aroma is lightly green, but also sweet and a tiny bit fruity.
After the session, the leaves have a uniform green colour. There are large pieces of leaves and some smaller pieces. Some stalks, but not too much. The aroma is a soft sweetness with some hints of fruits.
- 90°C water
- 6g for a 150ml Jianshui teapot
- 1 rinse
- 6 infusions
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Infusion 1 (15 sec): the colour is light yellow. When this liquor touched my lips and coated my mouth, I experienced a pleasant energy entering my body. The flavours are subtle but energising. There is a very light punch at the start, which changes into a light sweetness. I’m even getting a slight hint of nuts.
Infusion 2 (15 sec): the colour is getting darker and the initial punch is still noticeable. It doesn’t really become sweet, but it gives way to a soft bitterness. I usually don’t like bitter, but it’s soft and enjoyable in this one. The aftertaste is a combination of sweet and bitter.
Infusion 3 (20 sec): the punch at the start is still there. I think I’m feeling some of the sweet and fruity notes underneath. The slight bitterness is the common thread, but there is more going on than this.
Infusion 4 (25 sec): the initial punch goes away quickly and changes into a very light fruitiness. This is subtle but you can feel that it’s in there somewhere. The aftertaste is fruity as well.
Infusion 5 (30 sec): there is no punch anymore at the start as I’m immediately getting sweet notes in combination with a fruitiness. I’m also getting some light nuts, similar to what I experienced during the first infusion.
Infusion 6 (long): definitely no bitterness at the start. I’m getting really sweet and fruity flavours. Nothing major or too dominant, but it’s simple and enjoyable. The nuttiness is still noticeable in the finish.
I got this tea as a sample with my latest order and I’m happy and thankful for the fact that this tea found me. At the start of the earlier infusions, there was a bit of a punch as you usually get with younger shengs. The main difference was that this one was just right; it wasn’t too dominant or overwhelming. This initial bitterness changed into sweetness and fruitiness that were rather subtle. In some infusions, I even experienced a light nuttiness, which is something I’m a big fan of. I think I’m going to pick up a cake (or two) to be able to enjoy it in the future.
If you’re interested in this tea, you can buy it over here.