Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels


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Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels

Postby Herb_Master » Mar 1st, '11, 17:21

Whilst visiting Hojo, I was only going to buy tea, I was not going to buy teaware.

The best laid plans of Mice and men ........... ...........

whilst Natalie was preparing to give me the compulsory water test, I browsed the shop

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whilst Natalie was preparing some tea for me I went round the shop again

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Magnetically I kept being drawn to the Gisui

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I had not thought of brewing Dan Cong in anything other than Gaiwan, Chao Zhou teapot or Yixing.

Natalie brewed some dan Cong for me
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It was sweet, soon Natalie was unpacking Gisui Teapots and Teacups for me to choose from.

Isolating my choice of teapots to 2
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Soon I had chosen a Gisui Teapot and 2 Cups
Last edited by Herb_Master on Mar 2nd, '11, 07:47, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Cheap Oolong in Different vessels

Postby Herb_Master » Mar 1st, '11, 17:34

Today I christened the Gisui, I chose a bag of Imen's Da Wu Ye from the daays back when her commercial grade DC was relatively cheap.

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The results were sweet and floral with no bitterness

the pot seemed to be performing well
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the first brew 7gm in a 200ml Gisui 15 seconds was on the light side - so I upped infusions to 25 sec then 35 second

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stronger brews produced more flavour but with none of the layered finesse of the premium DCs

the pot poured well, and the filter keeps long intact leaves in control so no need for a strainer

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The Jury is still out, I need to try the same leaves in Chao Zhou and Gaiwan and I need to try a premium DC in the Gisui.
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Re: Cheap Oolong in Different vessels

Postby David R. » Mar 1st, '11, 19:02

Wahouh, Hojo's shop looks like Disneyland to me ! :)

Thanks for the Gisui first impressions. I am really eager to hear the rest of your results...

(presently with Hojo's Ali Shan Cha in a plain gaiwan, a real treat)
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Re: Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels

Postby brandon » Mar 2nd, '11, 07:47

What is the compulsory water test?
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Re: Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels

Postby David R. » Mar 2nd, '11, 11:31

I think HM told it in another post. It was much like the one of your blog, basically, testing water coming out of the different teaware he sells to appreciate the difference.
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Re: Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels

Postby Herb_Master » Mar 2nd, '11, 14:47

Yes, before tea Hojo insists that customers recognize the impact that different brewing vessels will have on the tea.

Water is boiled in as neutral a kettle as possible, then poured into a Glass Pitcher, and 3 brewing vessels. There are cups for each person for each vessel, the customer is invited to try the water from each vessel and recognise the differences.

In September with Hui (who has since left) It was Glass, Tetsubin, Sado and Shigaraki (I had expressed an interest in buying Shigaraki)

Last monthI was with Natalie and I had expressed an interest in Gisui Tokoname - it was Glass, Tetsubin, Banko and Gisui Tokoname.

I told Natalie that I had experienced the water test before and would like to forgo it, she said Hojo would be highly disapproving of her if he found that I had not been 'offered' the water test, but like before my ability to discern much difference was questionable.

When Hojo joined me on a later occasion he had received a full analysis of my taste preferences from Natalie and immediately produced some teas for me to try and enjoy which I did. They both knew that I preferred high roast yan cha like TLH, and flavour packed DCs - Hojo produced some high fired taiwan Oolongs that I enjoyed more than any Taiwan offerings I had had before, and some excellent DC.

I believe 2 teachatters that have received the water test could tell the difference between the waters.

Tead Off and Chua (Auhckw)
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Re: Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels

Postby Herb_Master » Mar 2nd, '11, 17:32

2nd Up was the Ba Xian gaiwan from China Cha Dao

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3.5gm in a Gaiwan that I was using to about 100ml

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15 seconds first infusion (No wash, I skipped a wash on the Gisui Tokoname, so felt obliged to repeat with all vessels) (I rarely do a wash on Imen's premium DCs - it seems a waste of good money :lol: , I could have done a wash with this cheap commercial grade, but when I start a new tea, with eagerness and great enthusiasm the wash often goes out of the window, I mean down my throat :D )

The flavour seems very very similar to the Gisui.

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The colour light, the taste delicate, fragrance obvious, but texture minimal

Repeating as per Gisui test, 2nd infusion 25 seconds

3rd infusion 35 seconds
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4th infusion 55 seconds (not sure how long the Gisui one was, I think I got distracted and overbrewed it (or was that the 5th?)
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Re: Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels

Postby Herb_Master » Mar 2nd, '11, 17:34

Ba Xian Gaiwan

Overall impression - very very very similar to the Gisui, but though I could not detect any differences I did feel that I enjoyed it more.

http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5020/549 ... a7bc_z.jpg

Was that because I was growing accustomed to the tea?
Was that because of my first session I was expecting what I got ?
Was it because of atmospheric conditions and change of mood in me?

It was fairly early in the morning whereas the Gisui brew was mid evening!

Did the gaiwan brew better - marginally - or were they as I feel incredibly similar?

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maybe this is a morning tea?
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Re: Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels

Postby Herb_Master » Mar 2nd, '11, 19:53

NO it is not a morning tea, tonight in a cheap Zi Sha yixing from ebay Zen8tea it outperformed the Gisui and the gaiwan (For ME) [but I generally prefer Yixing and Chao Zhou to Gaiwan and Glass and this is no exception]

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I repeated the same infusions 15 sec 25 sec 35 sec 55 sec
The pot holds about 145 ml so I used 5gm

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One advantage of a Yixing style pot over gaiwan and japanese style pot is you can be lazy when decanting from the teapot

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Strangely even with similar ratio and infusion timings the liquor color started off darker and stayed consistent.
The first 2 experiments the colour got darker as I upped the infusion times :?:

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The taste had more texture than from the other 2 vessels (as I usually find from DC in clay over Gaiwan) But the Aroma and Fragrance was not removed - it just moved from the start of the sip and the front of the mouth - to - the back of the mouth and the swallow.
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Re: Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels

Postby David R. » Mar 2nd, '11, 19:59

Thanks for your illustrated reports !

Maybe leaves are more "cooked" in the thicker-walls yixing, leading to a stronger extraction, hence the density, texture and colour.

You seem to brew your dan cong rather lightly compared to me. I tend to use at least a 5g of leaves in a 10cl gaiwan and don't brew shorter than 30 seconds for the first. And when using a teapot, I sometime pack even more. So I am wondering if the teapot has more influence with heavier parameters. I will try your way.

This gaiwan of yours is really gorgeous !
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Re: Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels

Postby Herb_Master » Mar 2nd, '11, 20:02

I really began to enjoy the tea in this cheap Yixing.

1 Thought occurred to me

This is one of 3 cheap zen8tea pots that I have dedicated to DC, between them I must have brewed DC well over 100 times - so they are perhaps well seasoned :!:

Today I got a small zing from the tea, with DTH DCs I have often got a big ZING from them - a sort of feeling of fizziness rather than astringency, it heightens my love for DC. With the DTH DCs it often comes at the expense of Aroma, but today, smaller Zing but back of the mouth Aroma :D

I need to break in the Gisui over a number of brewing sessions before comparing like to like with this pot 8)

Tomorrow I try with Chou Zhou pots, then back to Gisui for another try, then a premium DC edit one of Imen's

with mineral water for all 4 vessels

and then a 3rd DC :P edit one of Hojo's

The zi sha has thick walls and retains the heat well, the Gisui has thin walls and both it and the gaiwan cool down fast :)
Last edited by Herb_Master on Mar 2nd, '11, 20:17, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels

Postby Herb_Master » Mar 2nd, '11, 20:09

David R. wrote:Thanks for your illustrated reports !
Maybe leaves are more "cooked" in the thicker-walls yixing, leading to a stronger extraction, hence the density, texture and colour.


You could be right I was just posting some thoughts on that as you were posting

David R. wrote:You seem to brew your dan cong rather lightly compared to me. I tend to use at least a 5g of leaves in a 10cl gaiwan and don't brew shorter than 30 seconds for the first. And when using a teapot, I sometime pack even more. So I am wondering if the teapot has more influence with heavier parameters. I will try your way.

This is not my way, bearing in mind that I have lately been using 95ml to 100ml Chou Zhou pots, and that I was to conduct an experiment with possibily 20 variations, the 200ml size of the Gisui meant I downsized on leaf ratio to speed up on my progression through the tests and so as not to run out of leaf :lol:

Because I am a texture first - loving animal - aroma 2nd - I normally pack high, and brew short!

David R. wrote:
This gaiwan of yours is really gorgeous !


It has appeared on TC before when Zensuji was singing the praises of Jerry's Gaiwans I bought one, just before someone else wanted to buy it.

China Cha Dao

http://www.teachat.com/viewtopic.php?f=36&t=14106&p=175382&hilit=+China+Cha+Dao+China+Cha+Dao+#p175382
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Re: Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels

Postby Chip » Mar 2nd, '11, 20:37

Very interesting topic H_M. It is really interesting hearing about the cheap pot topping the uber $$$ one ... at this point.

BTW, the Japanese Canister police called, they want to fix the lid to the black crane canister properly! :mrgreen:
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Re: Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels

Postby edkrueger » Mar 2nd, '11, 22:06

I am confused. Where is the cheap DC mentioned in the tread's title?
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Re: Cheap Dan Cong in Different vessels

Postby gingkoseto » Mar 3rd, '11, 00:18

edkrueger wrote:I am confused. Where is the cheap DC mentioned in the tread's title?

:lol:

Herb_master, it's a very nice kyusu! From what you've showed, I got an impression that the difference in taste is probably mostly caused by size difference - or is it just my illusion that the vessels are of different sizes?

I constantly dream of more <120ml kyusu's :D
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