A Tea Urchin pairing today. In the morning:
Luo Shui Dong Spring 1) Spicy, umami. 2) Buttery coating on the tongue, a nice bitterness, very pleasant, although short-lived base. Leaves the tongue wet and tasting pleasant bitterness. Very slight astringency. 3) More of the same. 4) More. Nice. Tongue still coated. 5) one minute. Oooh, yeah. The first little cup was creamy, totally different (but not the rest). I suspect the sweetness talked about is in the base more than on the tongue. 6) 1:15 Giving up the ghost. 7,8) Long infusions, nice to the end.
In the afternoon:
Luo Shui Dong Autumn 1) Very interesting. At first, I was disappointed that the vegetal bitterness and spicyness of Spring wasn’t there, but there was vanilla or something in the base that’s very nice. The buttery tongue coating is back. 2) Accidentally overbrewed, for a minute, but the result was good. It’s bringing up olfactory memories of pleasant things I can’t place. 3) Oops, infused for a full minute AGAIN, and this time it was too much, the bitterness on the front of the tongue overcoming the gentler notes. 4) 30s, but it’s too late. Bitter now. Still pleasant enough to drink, but this tea reviewer needs to pay better attention. 5) 15s Too weak now but still giving that nice base with an OK bitterness around the edge of the front of the tongue. The bit at the bottom of the chahai is more bitter. 6) Just bitter now, the pleasant base is almost gone. 7) blech, poured it out.
In conclusion, I like both of these. They are both interesting and different from each other and good value. I, on the other hand, need a tuneup. Out with the wife yesterday I was a grumpy driver and my gongfu was anything but skillful this afternoon. This is how I get when I miss a few days of meditation. I'm going to go remedy that right now. The producers work very hard with great skill to produce these teas for me and that deserves my best effort in brewing them.