The dry leaves in my cup were fairly consistent in size, with a combination of small, straight, twisted, knotted and curled, greyish green pieces. They had a slightly sweet, smoky, and vegetal aroma (leeks?), but at the same time there was a whisper of fruit- like tones.
The first infusion…
Produced a clear, yellow liquor with very, very subtle green undertones. The liquor really surprised me – full bodied yet soft, with sweet notes of stone fruit – plum like in character. The smoky part was more of a subtle aftertaste; it was not very noticeable in the brew itself. There was the tiniest hint of astringency at the finish, but really just enough to leave my mouth refreshed and clean feeling. It re-steeped well and the second cup was very similar, but perhaps a bit more subdued.
Steeping Chun Mee…
As always, tea quality and quantity, water temperature and steeping time are paramount. The brewing water was 170 degrees Fahrenheit and my first steep was for minutes. The second steep was at a slightly hotter water temperature, than I used for the initial steeping.
Chun Mee is more easily over- steeped than some types of green tea. As with many green teas, but more noticeably with this type, it is especially important to make sure that the temperature of the water is not too hot, and the steeping time is not too long. Even high- quality Chun Mee tea can become acidic and astringent to the point of being undrinkable if it is brewed with water that is too hot.
As you will come to see, I am not normally a fan of green teas. I know the list of green tea benefits runs long – their superpowers if you will – but I just haven’t jumped onto the bandwagon yet. However, I usually have a more enjoyable experience, when I drink a flavored green tea, which to me helps to mask the bitterness of the green tea taste. It is still there a bit, but “camouflaged.” I do enjoy Grape Green Tea (Budou Green) which is a green tea blend scented with sweet and tart Kyoho grapes from Lupica Teas, or their Soleil Levant, which is a green tea accented with the aroma of white grapes and citrus fruits.
So, on my rating scale, it is a 2 + (I didn’t dislike the tea, but I wouldn’t probably drink it again).
All teas will be rated on a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 for dislike and 5 as love:
- Dislike (I didn’t like the tea and would not repurchase)
- Passable (I didn’t dislike the tea, but I didn’t think it was very good)
- Average (I didn’t find it good or bad and would drink it again)
- Good (I liked it but it and may repurchase)
- Love (I enjoyed it lot and would repurchase)