Bored by Baozhong?


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Bored by Baozhong?

Postby rhythmaning » Sep 2nd, '12, 11:28

Does anyone else on this forum find Baozhong to be just plain boring? Is that heresy?
I am a new to artisanal tea, and my palate definitely has a long way to go, but I just can't seem to get excited about this highly rated oolong. I've tried brewing it western style and eastern style, but it always just seems to come out like lightly flavored hot water to me. Am I doing something wrong, or should i just move on to a stronger oolong? Can one brew a "double-strength" baozhong?
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby puerhking » Sep 2nd, '12, 12:42

There is no doubt that Baozhong leans toward the subtle and nuanced. If you are new to higher end teas that explains a lot. I think most of us go through a palate adjustment or two over time. The more you drink tea, the more you will appreciate it.
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby MIKE_B » Sep 2nd, '12, 12:49

Not a baozhong expert or anything, but I was drinking a pretty good one last night. Loosely filled my gaiwan to the rim with leaf. After they had expanded, I had to keep pushing them down with the lid.
Yes, it was still a light tea. But I enjoy the super clean taste, subtle flavors.
For me, it's more about the aroma with Taiwan teas. Pressing my nose into my empty cup...pineapples.
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby debunix » Sep 2nd, '12, 13:10

rhythmaning wrote:Does anyone else on this forum find Baozhong to be just plain boring?


My first baozhong was a very mellow tea, a revelation for me when I first opened the tin, but one that I got a bit bored with over time. When I first opened it, I'd been drinking a lot of my traditional roast Ti Kuan Yin, and a cheap jasmine green tea. Next to those, it was fabulous. But as I started to discover a fuller range of oolong teas, it started to seem less fabulous by comparison. It was never bad, but never as special as the best of them either. I certainly was bored of it by the end, especially as I took so long finishing it off that it had also lost the little sweet floral sparkle that was its best feature at the start.

rhythmaning wrote:should i just move on to a stronger oolong? Can one brew a "double-strength" baozhong?


There's nothing wrong with trying to brew it different ways to add interest, and if yours is like mine was, reserving it for times when you just need a non-fussy ok tea.

But I've since has some wonderful artisan Baozhong, and if a description of another one catches my eye, I'd try it.
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby Chip » Sep 2nd, '12, 13:25

... it has been too long since I had a good one! I have been endeavoring to include a good boazhong in an OTTI tasting to no avail so far.

Speaking of Baozhong, is Wenshan still the way to go? I have fond memories from 7+ years ago of my first Wenshan.
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby rhythmaning » Sep 2nd, '12, 15:09

Chip wrote:... it has been too long since I had a good one! I have been endeavoring to include a good boazhong in an OTTI tasting to no avail so far.

Speaking of Baozhong, is Wenshan still the way to go? I have fond memories from 7+ years ago of my first Wenshan.


Thank you all for your input.

Interesting you should say that Chip. It's all new to me so I have no frame of reference. The only one I have thus far is Tea Trekker's Wenshan, from early spring of 2011's crop.

I might try brewing in a gaiwan with more leaf and see how that goes.....

Gary
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby rhythmaning » Sep 2nd, '12, 15:10

puerhking wrote:There is no doubt that Baozhong leans toward the subtle and nuanced. If you are new to higher end teas that explains a lot. I think most of us go through a palate adjustment or two over time. The more you drink tea, the more you will appreciate it.


I was wondering if that was the case. I DO get the floral and fruity nose that I've read about, but I guess my palate is still too used to black tea rocket fuel! :lol:
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby rhythmaning » Sep 2nd, '12, 15:12

debunix wrote:
rhythmaning wrote:Does anyone else on this forum find Baozhong to be just plain boring?


My first baozhong was a very mellow tea, a revelation for me when I first opened the tin, but one that I got a bit bored with over time. When I first opened it, I'd been drinking a lot of my traditional roast Ti Kuan Yin, and a cheap jasmine green tea. Next to those, it was fabulous. But as I started to discover a fuller range of oolong teas, it started to seem less fabulous by comparison. It was never bad, but never as special as the best of them either. I certainly was bored of it by the end, especially as I took so long finishing it off that it had also lost the little sweet floral sparkle that was its best feature at the start.

rhythmaning wrote:should i just move on to a stronger oolong? Can one brew a "double-strength" baozhong?


There's nothing wrong with trying to brew it different ways to add interest, and if yours is like mine was, reserving it for times when you just need a non-fussy ok tea.

But I've since has some wonderful artisan Baozhong, and if a description of another one catches my eye, I'd try it.


I guess I'll try playing with the brews a bit :wink: . Though I guess a traditional might shudder at the thought!
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby edkrueger » Sep 2nd, '12, 17:36

Baozhong is like concentrated light oolong. I have to ask, how are you brewing it?
I think its your ratio that is off. Unroasted, lightly oxidized Baozhong usually has very little bitterness. So that means you can use more leaf. Anything lighter than 10g per 100ml is too light.
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby rhythmaning » Sep 3rd, '12, 08:42

edkrueger wrote:Baozhong is like concentrated light oolong. I have to ask, how are you brewing it?
I think its your ratio that is off. Unroasted, lightly oxidized Baozhong usually has very little bitterness. So that means you can use more leaf. Anything lighter than 10g per 100ml is too light.


Whoa......DEFINITELY not the ratio I was using. I'll up the amount of leaf and see how it works. Thanks, Ed!

Gary
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby AaronF » Sep 3rd, '12, 10:24

I'm also new to artisinal teas. I've only had a few, but my favorite Baozhong so far (Floating Leaves '12 Honorable Mention) was definitely very delicate, but also very graceful. It reminded me of baroque chamber music, which would barely register if you're used to romantic symphonies, but reveals subtle beauties and intricacies if given its own space. Of course, it's all a matter of taste... I rarely turn to anything baroque on my mp3 player :)

P.S. Great handle. I love Monk.
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby rhythmaning » Sep 3rd, '12, 13:01

AaronF wrote:I'm also new to artisinal teas. I've only had a few, but my favorite Baozhong so far (Floating Leaves '12 Honorable Mention) was definitely very delicate, but also very graceful. It reminded me of baroque chamber music, which would barely register if you're used to romantic symphonies, but reveals subtle beauties and intricacies if given its own space. Of course, it's all a matter of taste... I rarely turn to anything baroque on my mp3 player :)

P.S. Great handle. I love Monk.


Monk Lives! :D
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby rhythmaning » Sep 6th, '12, 15:54

edkrueger wrote:Baozhong is like concentrated light oolong. I have to ask, how are you brewing it?
I think its your ratio that is off. Unroasted, lightly oxidized Baozhong usually has very little bitterness. So that means you can use more leaf. Anything lighter than 10g per 100ml is too light.


The larger amount of leaves really helped a lot, Ed. Thanks for the tip!
Best,
Gary
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby Cole » Sep 28th, '12, 02:23

Use lots of leaves, and maybe try a couple dong dings or lower altitude flowery oolongs first? I don't know if I'd appreciate a good Baozhong as much if I hadn't tasted a couple other more basic, sweet, flowery oolongs first (but I could totally be wrong).

It can be very subtle. I like just tossing 4/5g of leaves in my tiny ippukuwan and letting it brew "grandpa style." When you can get mostly water (instead of leaves) in your mouth, it's ready to drink :lol:
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Re: Bored by Baozhong?

Postby teaisme » Sep 28th, '12, 14:08

subtle?

I've never really thought of boazhong as that. Usually its a pretty full frontal buttery floral assault with hints of fruit and forest for me.

"lightly flavoured hot water"...
"I DO get the floral and fruity nose that I've read about, but..."

in some of my experiences muted taste but strong aroma is indication that water may not be ideal, even with 3-4g of a good baozhong in 250ml and a one minute steep, you should be getting more then what you have described if water and tea are good
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