The past few days were typical Spring days. The sun is shining and you hear the birds singing while flowers start to appear everywhere. This weather makes me crave green tea even more than usual. I still have a lot of samples left and one of these samples is a green tea from Taiwan. There are not that many decent green teas from Taiwan, which made me try this one to see if it as good as Taiwanese oolongs.
Qing Xin Gan Zi
Qing Xin Gan Zi is a green tea made from the Qing Xin (or Green heart) cultivar. This cultivar is usually preferred for oolong teas, producing a brilliant floral flavour profile. The Gan Zi in its name refers to the sub-varietal of the Qing Xin cultivar. This cultivar tends to produce a high amount of buds, which is useful for an Oriental Beauty oolong tea. The cultivar is also more delicate than other cultivars used in Taiwan but offers a more unique character. The Qing Xin Gan Zi is described as having “smooth and comforting notes that are lightly vegetal. The taste starts on a fruity note, followed by stronger floral middle notes and finishes on a slightly sweet, yet drying aftertaste.” (source)
The dry leaves have a twisted shape and are a darker green colour with some bright notes. These leaves look really vibrant because of that.
The wet leaves have a bright green colour and look even more vibrant than the dry ones. The size is also worth noting.
- Water 80°C
- 10g of leaves for a 200ml Tokoname Kyusu
- 1 rinse
- 6 steeps (15 sec + 5 sec each steep)
Smell dry leaves
The smell of the dry leaves reminds me of hay on a warm August evening.
Smell wet leaves
The hay is gone and it’s more roasted nuts now. Also some subtle fruity notes.
1st steep: it starts with a pleasant sweetness and some nuts in the finish. No dominant flavours, just a subtle steep.
2nd steep: lightly roasted nuts in combination with floral notes. It’s a subtle steep again. It’s funny that I got a warm sensation in my body while drinking this steep.
3rd steep: this steep starts out with a subtle sweetness. It’s more of a fruity sweetness but it’s not that prominent.
4th steep: the vegetal flavours start to come through now. In combination with lightly roasted nuts.
5th steep: the verdant flavours starts to come through more and more. This steep is mainly vegetal.
6th steep: weirdly enough, the green flavours are gone again and I’m getting a nutty flavour.
This was a pleasant but subtle tea to drink. The initial steeps had a light sweetness to them but this changed during the later steeps. The verdant and green flavours started to come through near the end of the session. A roasted nuttiness was noticeable during most steeps, which was quite pleasant to drink. I can say that this tea is enjoyable but if you like strong flavours, this tea might be too subtle for you. The flavours are tasty but just not that strong.