Wow, thanks for all the recommendations, everyone--now at least I know where to look (and who to trust!) Teachat comes through for me again ...
And actually, that brings up another interesting question--what would you guys say a good dragonwell *should* smell/taste like? It would be interesting to see how much variance there is out there ...
Hot Roasted Crispy Duck Skin.
Here are some tasting notes from this year:
Dry leaves aroma of dry seaweed, clean morning forest air, dry jasmine rice, corn and tiny white orchid (Mei Lan). All the right flavor are presented.
Heat leaves: Lemon, rice, vanilla, chocolate, and pineapple. Brewing parameter: 1/3 in 100ml gaiwan. 120F water. 1st/10sec. 2nd/15sec. 3rd/10sec. 4th/30sec. 5th/20sec. with shrimp eye boil. 6th/30sec. 7th/60sec. 8th/2mins....
Liquor: Steamed green bean, light roasted corn, veggie, seaweed, roast duck, sweet pineapple, loads of bitter chocolate.
Notes: The liquor is not as delicate and soft as the promising aroma with big nose, and full fragrant upfront but not delivering in the taste. Perhaps the result of a too-early harvest, underdeveloped leaves. Too many tiny buds and fluff balls causing the bitter, veggie, over-brewed gyokuro quality, specially rough on the tongue at the later steeps. Although there are tons of umami, which might not be a good character after all. Will wait and hope for our 2nd harvest pre-grain rain shipment next week and compare.http://themandarinstea.blogspot.com/201 ... ng-10.html
Premium AAA Grade. 2011-03-28 Lion's Peak.