OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"


"Official Tea Tasting Initiative" Teas shared & discussed.

Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby lordmage » Jul 16th, '13, 00:17

well i finally had some time to dig into my OTTI 19 samples going to start with the Long fei xia oolong and work my way up. Image now i decided i would do a small infussion sampling with a simple cermic cup no gaiwan or any thing stay as close as i can to the suggested steps. the scent before i even infused the leaves was buttery with floral tones clearly in place neither scent truly overpowers the other. seeing how this is my first OTTI and freshest oolong i will ever have as well as the rest. look forward to another posting after a few infusions. i used a us tsp for the first samplings to determine how robust it is before i use the rest for my large batch drinking. in terms of timing it will be quick infusions starting at 20 seconds and adding 10 sec per infusion till i no longer enjoy it. i tend to also like sweetwater if the flavor is right which is why the first sampling is a low leaf to high water ratio. going to shoot for 8 oz cups. More posting to follow.
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby lordmage » Jul 16th, '13, 02:51

well i decided after a few small cups that it was time to bring out the big guns. for my taste i was able to get about 4 mins worth of stepping out of the leafs each infusion was an average of 35 seconds and each one was perfectly buttery with a floral undertone. i did enjoy that sample next one will be another day.
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby 茶藝-TeaArt08 » Jul 16th, '13, 13:58

With the OTTI recent or renewed exposure to Cui Luan for many, I thought this posting from TTC might be a nice backdrop for the general region of Taiwan. Just reading this makes me ache for Taiwan, for trips into the mountains, for quiet and cool moments looking out across "cloud seas" (雲海), stopping at hot springs nestled in bamboo forests along the way, and drinking high mt. tea connectively with friends: (http://www.taiwanteacrafts.com/2013/06/ ... olong-tea/)。台灣我好愛你。。越來越想你。 我受不了!
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby lmno » Jul 16th, '13, 14:50

I am at 2350m for this LI SHAN HUA GANG OOLONG. The dry tea in the bag has a nice aroma. The brewed liquor is a rich, pure yellow with crystal clarity. The second brew is even more beautiful and the fragrance matures and continues to permeate the room. The spent leaves feel like velvet.

This tea is at once vegetal, sweet and fragrant with a pleasant astringency; the floral notes linger nicely. Although I rarely accompany my teas with any food -- mostly, because I want to taste the tea -- I offset the astringency of this tea with a soft biscotti. This proved to be a perfect companion for this tea.

The complexity of this high mountain oolong keeps it interesting and I like this tea a lot!

Be sure to taste this one after it has cooled in the cup...very nice.
Last edited by lmno on Jul 16th, '13, 15:38, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby 茶藝-TeaArt08 » Jul 16th, '13, 14:56

2013 Cui Luan, light roast, wulong from Origin (OTTI 19):
(4+ grams brewed (the dry, green nuggets were not as fragrant as other Lishan I have from my last trip to Taiwan) in a 70ml Bero, red clay pot, drank in Lin's glazed tea cups, accompanied by smell cups to really experience the aromas, with 95deg. C Shacklee filtered water, brewed in a Bonavita stainless kettle)

For this tea I brewed in the style of my teacher in Taiwan attempting four, formally poured, "perfect" rounds, attempting even clarity, color, and graduation of flavor/aroma with no "flat" rounds, and no overloading of the pot with leaves.

I preheated all the vessels. After preheating I cracked the pot lid slightly (so as not to allow the steam and heat to escape) and loaded the leaves, waterless, into the heated pot to "bake" and allow a subtle, pre-wash/rinse awakening of the leaves. After 45 seconds I opened the pot lid to breathe in the rich aromas of the tea (quite different than dry leaf or post-rinse leaf scents (notes of pear and applesauce)). In my experience, this stage is where the leaves reveal their truest scent profile.

I then gave a 10 sec. rinse of the "baked" leaves followed by about a minute wait to let the leaves open slightly. Then came the addition of hot water to the pot.

1st= 2:30 seconds: (I used a timer so that I could really see where the tea was at and record it for the OTTI (I don't always use a timer.)) The smell cup lingered and lingered; I just stayed there with my nose in the cup, rather happily buried in the cup. :) The attack for me was of fruit, followed by a lasting, pillowy sweetness, with cereal notes and a rich throat.

2nd= 2:20 seconds: Amazingly fragrant cup, similar to the first but this round a greater dry, balanced astringency comes out along with pronounced buttery nasal aroma

3rd= 3:30 seconds: Best round! Again, amazingly fragrant. This round the throat linger really comes alive; it lingers and lingers. Perfect hui gan.

4th= 5:30 seconds: Dry continues to increase, subtle grassy notes accompanied by a bright floral and continuing linger in the nose, mouth, throat.

I continue on with other rounds because the tea is still alive. However my emphasis was mainly on the first four rounds as if I was being tested by my teacher, imagining what I needed to produce if I were pouring for him to exhibit the characteristics of the tea.

Post-pour: The limp leaves are still fragrant. Inspecting them, the quality is apparent. Almost every nugget seems to have unfurled into a good sized stem with 3 to 4 leaves, one of which is a bud. The leaf edges are solid and and not torn and look to have been prepared very well. Rubbing them, they do not disintegrate, even with the longer steep times I used.

All in all, a very nice experience.
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby debunix » Jul 16th, '13, 15:28

Because of need for speed, on my way out the door yesterday, I grabbed the nearest packet of tea, my thermos, and ran. I grabbed the Cui Luan, and later put a small quantity in the 1 quart thermos, added cold water from a water cooler, and waited.

It was AMAZING. Some of the finest cold brew tea ever. That sense of salivation from something fruity/tart at the end of a sip was very strong in the cold brewed tea. I was in bind and this tea came through just brilliantly. I later brewed the rest of the sample for a more conventional hot-brewed session, 6 infusions or so, in my small porcelain Seong-il pot dedicated to greener oolongs, and it was also delicious, but not quite the revelation it was as cold-brewed tea.
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby saxon75 » Jul 16th, '13, 16:06

I tried the Fushoushan last night. I found the flavors and scents to be light and delicate, floral, pleasant. Nonetheless, this aspect didn't strike me as particularly interesting, though it was nice. What really caught my attention were the mouthfeel, the way it coated my tongue, made me salivate, and made my mouth tingle. Really quite lovely.

Fushoushan: 10g in 180 ml porcelain gaiwan, 20 sec/40 sec/80 sec/2 min/4 min @ 95C.
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby lmno » Jul 17th, '13, 10:58

As "debunix" described in a July 16 post yesterday, I also brewed the remainder of my LI SHAN: CUI LUAN cold. How lovely!

When I first brewed this tea hot a few days ago, I did not find it to be very fragrant or extraordinary. However, it is an elegant tea when brewed with room temperature water and left to chill several hours or overnight in the fridge. The leaves fully opened and the tea is smooth and sweet with no astringency.
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby hopeofdawn » Jul 17th, '13, 11:48

Managed to sit down and try my second sample from this OTTI (first brew session): this time it was the Li Shan Hua Gang.

Ratios: 4 grams/100 ml porcelain pot
1st steep at 208F/30 secs, 2nd steep at 195F/20 secs, 3rd steep 208/30 secs, and 4-6th steeps hotter and longer, usually 208F/60 sec and up.

1st steep--the scent was AMAZING. Not sure if it was just because this was coming at the end of a long day and I was prepared to appreciate it or not, but the leaves in the preheated pot and after the first brew smelled extraordinary--floral, but yet thick and full. If I had to compare it to anything, it was almost like smelling fresh-baked bread or a stew--not in actual scent, but more in the power and fullness of the aroma. In contrast, the first brew was actually very clean--it lingered on the tongue with just a hint of astringency, but otherwise was very sweet and clear.

2nd steep--still a clean brew, with a beautiful golden color. This one was more powerful, but didn't coat the tongue--just green and sweet.

3rd steep--I combined the 3rd and 4th brews, due to time considerations--a lovely, savory cupful that I just wanted to bury my nose into. Almost no astringency at all. I think this was my favorite steep.

I haven't exhausted these leaves yet--they're waiting for when I get home again. But this tea was a lovely end to a long day yesterday!
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby SilentChaos » Jul 18th, '13, 08:07

Glad to see everyone enjoying the teas. :D

I've been reading all the posts and following everyone's opinions and preferences. It might be interesting to note that the Lishan: Fushoushan and to a lesser extent the ShanLinXi: Long Feng Xia are classic examples of greener gaoshan oolongs, minimal oxidiation and roast with high fragrance. The flavour and aroma is all up front. An even better example of this greener style of gaoshan would be the bonus DYL. The Lishan: Cui Luan, in contrast, is slightly more traditional in style - heavier oxidation with a constrained but noticeable roast. The meat of the tea shows up in the aftertaste and hui gan. (A tea like this should get better after spending sometime stabilizing.)
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby AdamMY » Jul 18th, '13, 08:14

SilentChaos wrote:Glad to see everyone enjoying the teas. :D

I've been reading all the posts and following everyone's opinions and preferences. It might be interesting to note that the Lishan: Fushoushan and to a lesser extent the ShanLinXi: Long Feng Xia are classic examples of greener gaoshan oolongs, minimal oxidiation and roast with high fragrance. The flavour and aroma is all up front. An even better example of this greener style of gaoshan would be the bonus DYL. The Lishan: Cui Luan, in contrast, is slightly more traditional in style - heavier oxidation with a constrained but noticeable roast. The meat of the tea shows up in the aftertaste and hui gan. (A tea like this should get better after spending sometime stabilizing.)



Just curious where does the Hua Gang fall in the scope of things? Had that one again last night, and I felt I nailed it this time, it was really nice all the way through.
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby CLC » Jul 18th, '13, 17:19

So far I have tried the Shan Lin Xi and two of the Lishans (Cui Luan and Hua Gang), prepared with close to 6.5 grams dry leaf in a 100mL gaiwan. I closely followed the recommended brewing instructions, although after the first ~45s infusion, I dropped to ~15s for the next, adding about 5-10s for each subsequent infusion. After my backpacking trip through the Cohutta Wilderness in northern GA, I had some filtered mountain spring water left over and used that for the Lishans. Even with the RO well water from my house, though, I am the biggest fan of the Shan Lin Xi. I found its aroma the most interesting, with this undertone that reminded me of apple skins. To me, it had the most interesting huigan of the three, although its aftertaste was outmatched by the Lishans. I also loved the Shan Lin Xi's buttery textures that lasted throughout the entire session, and its multi-faceted textural form, rapidly evolving from opening to finish.

I found the Cui Luan Lishan to be unique in its roasted qualities, which were very well integrated with the leaves' properties and did not overpower in flavor. However, I found the aromas and flavors to be less powerful than the other two, especially in the dry leaves' scent. It was also a bit too tart for my tastes, although it transferred into a very nice, strong and thick aftertaste, with a throaty cooling. I didn't notice the salivating effects as much as other chatters noted, although it certainly wasn't drying at all. More of my attention was drawn to the powerful throaty coolness (more than the Shan Lin Xi, but less intense than the Hua Gang, although the Cui Luan's cooling lasted much longer throughout steeps). The spent leaves were also quite large compared to the other two, of consistent size, and strong and waxy when rubbed.

The Hua Gang Lishan was quite tasty, although it didn't hold up to as many steeps as the other two. Yet, its slight astringent bite and intense whole-mouth cooling sensations made up for the lack of staying power. The spent leaves were also quite varied. They consisted of the smallest leaves, the largest leaves, and the longest leaf chain of the three. I also noticed many of the smaller leaves were ripped up along the edges and were fairly delicate when rubbed.

Today I'll be having the Da Yu Ling, and tomorrow, the Fushoushan.

Many thanks to Chip and SilentChaos for this opportunity! So far, so excellent.
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby lmno » Jul 19th, '13, 12:33

Continuing my climb to 2400m, I just brewed the 2013 SPRING FUSHOUSHAN.

Upon opening the bag, I smelled...the bag! I did not smell much of the tea. However, after heating the dried nuggets with a splash of off-boil water for a quick "wash," I was rewarded with that heavenly caramel candy aroma that belongs uniquely to these high mountain teas.

The liquor was a light yellow with brilliant clarity. The mouth-feel, in contrast, was rather thick with resultant salivation. The flavor is of grassy hay and not sweet, with no astringency. The overall taste is a little weaker than what I anticipated.

The second brew yields an equally light yellow tea with great clarity. Although this second brew has a hearty bouquet in the mouth, the flavor continues to be a little weak. It has more perfume than actual flavor. The linger is brief.

I have been using half of each of my baggies of these five high mountain teas for hot brewing and the remainder for chilling in the fridge. Because this FUSHOUSHAN is such a high high-mountain tea, I am anxious to see what it offers in a cold water chill. So far, I have been quite pleased with the chilled results of the other teas I have chilled: Shan Lin Xi/Long Feng Xia, Li Shan/Cui Luan and the Li Shan/Hua Gang. Our extremely warm summer in Southern California makes these chilled teas very refreshing!
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby Splinters » Jul 19th, '13, 13:20

I've just finished my sample of my fourth OTTI tea: the Hua Gang. The tea and its broth's appearance are similar to the other selections, but this tea definitely has its own style. The scent of broth is more like chicken soup than the others, and the taste more vegetal. I've been able to generate three thick and tasty steeps before (to my taste) the drop-off begins, each of about the same character, with good mouth-feel and a pleasant, subtle veggie flavor. It doesn't whack you over the head with its character, but it's mellow and sufficiently distinctive. I like it.
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Re: OTTI 19 OriginTea "Event of the Season!"

Postby Rymdpromenad » Jul 19th, '13, 15:53

I think I like the Fushoushan the most, so far. Quite an experience.

What do you do with the tea that remains after your first session, by the way? I've got 4 grams left, which is too little for another gong fu session. Grandpa style? Cold brew?
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