Taiwanese Sun-Moon Lake Black


Fully oxidized tea leaves for a robust cup.

Postby TokyoB » May 9th, '09, 13:24

Victoria wrote:I'm sorry I don't think I can even post a coherent thought on the Sun Moon lake from Upton. It was so horrid, I couldn't get down more than a few gulps. Definitely not for me. I didn't sense any wintergreen. Not to offend those who like it, it's not for me. As with all teas though, I'm glad I tried it, I love trying and learning about tea.


Wow - well that's too bad. No offense taken of course. I'm wondering how you brewed it though - did you try it a few different ways - gongfu or English style? I've only brewed this English style. I have to say that I also never sensed any mint but I thought that could be due to the English style brewing vs. gongfu. I also thought this tea was very "strong" - by that I mean that brewing it English style I only require a very little amount of tea for a 3 min. brew.

Victoria - did you mention that you also ordered the Sun Moon Lake/Ruby tea from CS? Do you still plan on trying it?? :wink:
I found them to be similar - will be interesting to see if you do too nor not. On a separate note - what are your favorite blacks or other teas from Upton? I have a gift certificate to use there. Feel free to start a new post if you'd like.

Thanks for your honest opinion of the Sun Moon Lake tea.
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This sounds like a good tea

Postby yoshter576 » May 9th, '09, 14:18

This sounds like a good tea im gona have to give it a try soon.
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Postby shah82 » May 9th, '09, 16:02

Stephanie Erler of Teamasters sells a ruby tea that I consider pretty good, and which I prefer to the Upton versions. The Sun Moon Tea is very beautiful in dry appearance though...

One thing to really note with these teas is that they are extremely unforgiving of overbrewing.
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Postby Victoria » May 9th, '09, 17:46

TokyoB wrote:
Victoria wrote:I'm sorry I don't think I can even post a coherent thought on the Sun Moon lake from Upton. It was so horrid, I couldn't get down more than a few gulps. Definitely not for me. I didn't sense any wintergreen. Not to offend those who like it, it's not for me. As with all teas though, I'm glad I tried it, I love trying and learning about tea.


Wow - well that's too bad. No offense taken of course. I'm wondering how you brewed it though - did you try it a few different ways - gongfu or English style? I've only brewed this English style. I have to say that I also never sensed any mint but I thought that could be due to the English style brewing vs. gongfu. I also thought this tea was very "strong" - by that I mean that brewing it English style I only require a very little amount of tea for a 3 min. brew.

Victoria - did you mention that you also ordered the Sun Moon Lake/Ruby tea from CS? Do you still plan on trying it?? :wink:
I found them to be similar - will be interesting to see if you do too nor not. On a separate note - what are your favorite blacks or other teas from Upton? I have a gift certificate to use there. Feel free to start a new post if you'd like.

Thanks for your honest opinion of the Sun Moon Lake tea.


I prepared it English style and made a 16oz pot of it. There was not enough in the sample to go another time, unfortunately, or I would have tried less leaf, and also tried it in a gaiwan. I tried a taste of the cold tea from the pot and it was much less objectionable, so it might be ok as iced if watered down some. Which yes, is what I may have to do when my CS order gets here if you say they are similar. We'll see! Oh and I was careful not to go over 3 mins.

I am not a fan of Upton, so asking for recommendations from me will get you the "buy accessories" answer. They have great bags and tins for sharing and storing tea. Or you might try some 2009 FF Darjeelings. The Arya was good but on the astringent side.

My favorite blacks are Darleeling FFs, three favorite Nilgiri. Several from Adagio: Adagio Yunnan Gold, Yunnan Noir, Nepal FF, and the Darjeeling FF. Favorite vendors for black: TeaSource, Tao of Tea and of course Adagio.
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Postby Janine » May 9th, '09, 23:12

Thanks all, again, and for the recommendations on favorite teas and vendors. All of this is so informative, it is really great and much appreciated!

Victoria, thanks for trying a brave experiment and going all the way trying the tea. I feel like I've been through a bit of an adventure through you, and I really appreciate the reviews and recommendations too. I just hope my enthusiasm and curiosity didn't push you into something you regretted! Now that I know slightly more about different black teas, I really appreciate the recommendations as I have yet to really explore Indian teas. So, I'm looking forward to hearing more about darjeelings, etc. and trying more myself.
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Postby Victoria » May 10th, '09, 02:17

Janine wrote:Victoria, thanks for trying a brave experiment and going all the way trying the tea. I feel like I've been through a bit of an adventure through you, and I really appreciate the reviews and recommendations too. I just hope my enthusiasm and curiosity didn't push you into something you regretted! Now that I know slightly more about different black teas, I really appreciate the recommendations as I have yet to really explore Indian teas. So, I'm looking forward to hearing more about darjeelings, etc. and trying more myself.


Hahaha! It doesn't take much pushing to get me to try a new tea!! No worries. I knew what I might be getting into. Besides it was a good excuse to order some of the new FF Darjeelings. :)
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Postby aaronlawson » May 10th, '09, 15:14

Victoria,
The longest steep I did with this tea (and with the Ruby Jade tea from Taiwan) was 30 seconds (that's how it was prepared for me in Taiwan.) I've never tried any of the #18's English Style. As I reported earlier the "Premium Formosa" did not do well English Style, so I stopped serving it that way.
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Postby Victoria » May 10th, '09, 16:04

Thanks Aaron, I'll try it gongfu when the CS order gets here.
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Postby Victoria » May 14th, '09, 13:10

Well my CS order arrived. (Oh some yummy FF Darjeelings BTW)

I tried this one English style just to compare and be fair to Upton's.

It seemed a little bit better, but maybe because I knew what to expect.
The first taste of this tea is an eye opener to be sure.

This is a BOLD tea, and I can see how it could be loved by some. At this point I will say it’s not for me, but I will try brewing with different parameters as suggested.
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Postby TokyoB » May 14th, '09, 13:25

Try using much less leaf. I was surprised at how little is needed. In an infuser mug I just used several leaves for a few mins.
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Postby Victoria » May 14th, '09, 13:33

Ok, I'll try that too.
Thanks!
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Postby Victoria » May 16th, '09, 16:22

Almost forgot I also ordered this one from Imperial Teas in the UK. They call
theirs Black Ruby.
http://www.imperialteas.co.uk/index.php ... y&x=53&y=6
Actually since I got wise and with the advice of other posters, I used less
leaf and less time, this one came out pretty good. Definitely fruity and
complex.

Image
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Postby TokyoB » May 18th, '09, 13:53

More on Taiwan cultivar #18 from the Red Circle tea blog yesterday.

http://www.redcircletea.com/blog/?p=71
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Postby TokyoB » May 18th, '09, 13:57

Victoria wrote:Almost forgot I also ordered this one from Imperial Teas in the UK. They call
theirs Black Ruby.
http://www.imperialteas.co.uk/index.php ... y&x=53&y=6
Actually since I got wise and with the advice of other posters, I used less
leaf and less time, this one came out pretty good. Definitely fruity and
complex.

Image


So you like this one? Did you notice any minty taste? On another topic, how are the teas from Imperial Tea? I've looked at their site a few times but haven't ordered from them as of yet. Wish they has smaller sizes - 100gms of the "Ruby" tea for 31.5 pounds isn't cheap.
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Postby Victoria » May 18th, '09, 15:25

Yeah I know they should offer it in smaller sizes.
I just got the 20g sample.

No minty taste. But again to be consistant I prepared it English style.
But I did like it more with less leaf and less time.
And it's not bad over ice.
But I'm not buying any bulk amount of it.
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