For the past days I have been working with a 50g bag of Alishan Jin Xuan tea, lot 207 from Taiwan Tea Crafts. This for me is the first disappointing tea from them. I have experimented with different pots (different clays, glazed and unglazed), with water temp., steep times, water adjustments, etc. It's the first challenging tea that I've had in some time (which gives me genuine gratitude for the grace to have so many good teas to drink
After pouring it in my Taiwan, 150ml stone pot I did get it to improve. But that improvement merely made the tea enjoyable but not great. It had to happen sooner or later. I wouldn't buy this lot again. It came out flat and not as rich as I expect from an Alishan Jin Xuan tea.
Today I return to （明岡梨山烏龍）Ming Gang Lishan wulong tea and it does not disappoint. I pour 8.6 grams in a 120ml Petr Novak glazed kyusu and cups for 9 rounds before stopping. It's such a rich and complex tea with notes of honeysuckle, cream, cane sugar, and meadow flowers with a stable vegetal underlayer and a fresh and lasting huigan. It's a really quality Lishan tea which I enjoy all the more after a few days of an average tea.
Today I also find my mind drawn to a rich appreciation for the gift of tea, for the world's unique terroirs and the gifted and devoted tea growers and tea makers that endure sleepless days during harvest and processing to bring this amazing gift to those of us lucky enough to be exposed to the experience of quality tea. I am left with lingering gratitude.