My thoughts on an ji bai cha

Made from leaves that have not been oxidized.

My thoughts on an ji bai cha

Postby Alurpal » Nov 9th, '12, 11:21

Name: Ming Qian An Ji Bai Cha Organic Green Tea 2012
Type: Green
Region: Zhejiang Province, China
Method: Gaiwan, ~100ml
Water: Filtered tap
Temperature: 175 Fahrenheit
Amount: 3.5g
Time: ~20 sec.

Setting: Commute to work
Music: Jazz (Lee Morgan – I’m a fool to want you)

This was my first time preparing/drinking this tea. I decided to brew it 5 times and blend it all in a larger to go mug for my drive. Each infusion went well. The color appeared to be consistent with others’ reviews – a light golden yellow tint. The smell of the dry tea was more grassy than some other green teas I’ve had and very delicate. I’m curious to see how my multiple infusions blended together differ from one big western style infusion.

The first sip definitely met and exceeded my expectations. I usually like to get a sense of the mouth feel initially, and the result was great. It had a similar silkiness that I usually find with a tieguanyin and that familiar green tea after taste that lingered nicely. Unfortunately, I was drinking from a plastic to go mug so the flavors were somewhat muddled by my container, and the after taste was definitely the strongest aspect. Reminiscent of fields of tea plants after a morning shower, lifting the fragrance up, into the air, blending with the smells of the earth. A sweet taste though, no bitterness. I kept getting a chocolate vibe the entire time but would dismiss it. I am now sure there is a slight chocolate characteristic in the after taste, but maybe that’s just me.

The effect of sipping a great historical tea (see “Treatise on Tea” if you haven’t already) amidst the morning commuting traffic with Lee Morgan conducting the theme music was quite extraordinary. Was it the theanine? I think so. Since I’ve been drinking tea and meditating I’ve developed my senses to tune into slight changes in perception and state of mind. The tea, combined with the setting provided a wonderful contemplative state and before I knew it, I was at work still pondering why some people get up every morning and “fight” their way through traffic while mindlessly arguing on the phone, displaying their displeasure through their obvious body motions. I don’t get it. But that’s another topic.

Overall, I bought 50g of this tea and plan on experimenting with my brewing method and explore what else this tea has to offer.


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Re: My thoughts on an ji bai cha

Postby debunix » Nov 9th, '12, 14:24

I love An Ji Bai Cha, and find that it does hold up better than most green teas when bulk brewed, but it is far better to drink each infusion quickly after brewing.

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Re: My thoughts on an ji bai cha

Postby gingkoseto » Nov 10th, '12, 09:46

This is one of my favorite green teas too :D
It's a typical high amino acid, low polyphenol tea. Therefore, some people may find it a little tasteless (indeed it doesn't have as much of certain polyphenol-related taste as some other green tea), but those who love it, would love it deeply. In China, some people call it "chicken soup tea" and I can surely understand where that name comes from :D
I saw your other post about brewing. I think Seven Cup's recommendation of 185F is not too high, and with your gaiwan size, even higher temperature would be ok (with leaf/water ratio adjusted).

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Re: My thoughts on an ji bai cha

Postby debunix » Nov 10th, '12, 12:43

Now enjoying some An Ji Bai Cha (2012 spring tea from Norbu), and I did my now usual preparation for it: a hot flash rinse with water at about 180-190 degrees to 'wake up' the leaves, then a series of infusions starting at 150 degrees and working up 10 degrees or so per infusion.

gingkoseto wrote:those who love it, would love it deeply

That's me. It does lack a certain grassy astringency that most other greens have--it's very difficult to pull that out of it, or to get bitterness, thought I've managed it even in the past. It's very subtle--a hint of floral and fruity but mostly fresh green spring peas come through. Mmmmm. Gentle for waking up, and easy to drink quickly enough on a chilly morning to warm me up. I wish the ponchos weren't already packed up weeks ago....

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Re: My thoughts on an ji bai cha

Postby blairswhitaker » Nov 10th, '12, 17:28

I'm also in the love it deeply crowd. I always brew it grandpa style. four grams in a 10oz glass at 80c and no timing, just drink it as slow or fast as I please. I refill the water when it gets about 1/4 of the way down. I get about three glasses using this method.

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