HIGH MOUNTAIN BAI HAO "ORIENTAL BEAUTY"
Tea type: oolong tea
How to prepare it:
Quantity: 4 grams
Water temperature: 85 - 90 °C (185 - 195 °F)
Steeping time: 20+ seconds
Number of infusion: 7-8
Where to buy: https://daurim.com/discount/godsave10
What we have noticed immediately the first time that we opened the pack is that that tea has an increadible sweetness: smooth, strong and really thick. After a few time, some herbal notes are shown, with a sort of umami feeeling and a tiny salty hint. Then there are woody notes which recal to some high graded Darjeeling black tea, but without their tannins. At the end there is also a different type of sweetness respect the initial one, which reminds to a white tea.
first steep: pale yellow
second to last steep: bright brown - orange (maybe copper?)
First steep: really sweet and consistent to its dry scent, with strong woody notes. However now it's shown a strong floral aroma at the end.
Second steep: completely different: there are still the same woody notes as before, but now an extremely powerfull orange arises, sweet and
really juicy. Then its sweetness goes towards exotic ripe fruits - mango and papaya - with a slightly balsamic ending.
Third steep: really closer to the second one, but more open, with more orange notes and less of woody one. Ripe fruits at the end.
Fourth steep: now, on the contraury, wooden notes are stronger than th orange ones. At the end there are the same scent of exotic ripe fruits.
Fifth steep: prickly, with lots of wood and orange notes.
Sixth steep: orange now becames the main scent, while wood give body to the brew. At the end an abstract sweetness arises.
Seventh steep: close to the last one, but with more orange hints.
First steep: it has a light taste with a sweetish finish, recalling a little bit honey and hay. Weak aftertaste.
Second steep: really different as before - consistently with its scent - :definitely thicker and full-bodied with strong orange notes, which give an interesting sour dimension to the brew. Then there are woody hints and at the end a sweetness made up of exotic ripe fruit.
Third steep: really closer to the last one, with a gentler orange.
Fourth steep: now the citrus dimesion is weaker than before, leaving space to wood, which goes toward ripe fruits at the end. There is no bitterness, neither tannins. This specific steep, in my opinion, recalls to a few Darjeeling oolong teas.
Fifth steep: really closer to the last one, but wealer in intensity.
Sixth steep: equal the last one.
Seventh steep: even weaker, with really a light aroma of orange and wood. of course there still a subtle sweetness.
Brewing tea through the Gong Fu Cha method is extremely differents respect what we are used to in occident. We steep a small amount of tea for long time, while here is exactly on the opposite side, letting multiple infusions. It's quite difficult gives a final score consistently to other ones.
I steeped this tea two times: one at 90°C (195 °F), modifyng sometimes the steeping time, while the second one at 85°C. At 90°C the liquor's is stronger in flavours, but react badly if you arise the steeping times just for a few second, giving a more pricly brew with really a few tannins sometimes. On the other hand, at 85°C you can play more easily with the steeping times, paying something in terms of intensity.
Besides all theese conclusions, this is really a great, complex tea with many differents scents and flavours in your cups.
My score is 9.1/10