Yay! It’s the 250th day of the 365 teas challenge, and I have an excellent tea to review.
Actually, this is the best rou gui yan cha I have ever tasted. I usually do not read the packaging before I taste a tea (have to confess not being able to read Chinese, also helps!). But I simply don’t try to find out much because I want to test myself (whether I get the tea/flavours right). Before drinking this tea, I knew it was a yancha, and that’s it.
By smelling the dry leaves, I could not tell what it was. But by tasting it, I could certainly tell it was rou gui. I then checked the packaging, and I was right. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to promote myself here but the tea. I then offered the tea to my husband (who is not particularly into teas), and his first reaction was ‘cinnamon’. Yay! Sometimes, I had rou gui without any cinnamon flavour, but this one was full of it. To me, this tea was the definition of rou gui, at least until now.
However, this tea is not only about cinnamon. It carries all the fantastic properties of being a yan cha (rock tea). Locals describe their fragrance as ‘flowers growing on the rocks’. Around Wuyi Mountain in Fujian, farmers plant tea trees (not bushes or shrubs) between rocks and stones. This is where the name Yan Cha comes from. There are about 1000 types of tea trees in the Wuyi area. I am thinking about buying more from this tea.
Origin: Shuiliandong, Wuyi Shan, Fujian
Harvest time: 2019
Leaf colour: Tones of dark brown with some reddish edges
Liquor colour: Orange/amber
Tea aroma: Floral and smoky
Tea taste: Slighlty sweet with rich cinnamon, floral and mineral notes with a lingering affect
Steeping/brewing: Place 8 g of this tea in a teapot or gaiwan and add about 100-120 ml water at around 100°C. Rinse after 5 sec. Steep for 15 seconds for the second time and increase the consecutive steeping time by 10 seconds each time. You can steep this tea up to six or seven times.
Shelf life: Up to three years.