Notes of honey, orange blossom water, and sandalwood.
Red tea from Fujian, China・March 2016・金牙梅佔・Organic
Our reputation for bright unique teas make the inclusion of this tea in the collection surprising. On the uptake, it’s not intensely aromatic, nor overly sweet. But repeated brews yield uncommon viscosity and texture, and an aromatic character that begins gently, but crescendos with each successive infusion. A meizhan red tea was in the collection when we launched in 2013. This year’s Gold Bud Meizhan is an elevated rendition of that original tea.
Gold Bud Meizhan is so named because this tea consists only of young handpicked leaf buds from the Meizhan cultivar. Traditionally crafted as a yancha oolong from Wuyishan, it is prized for its aromatics, and typically used in blends that are marketed as Da Hong Pao. Gold Bud refers to the golden sheen of the leaf buds when they undergo oxidation.
The 500m source garden is located in Songxi County - east of the Wuyi mountain range in northern Fujian. The garden is CERES, USDA Organic and EU Organic. We also source our Golden Needle from this garden.
The individual buds were handpicked over a three day period beginning March 25, 2016. Once picked, the leaves were shade withered, rolled and oxidized in a controlled temperature and humidity environment. A final pan-roasting set the buds.
Each step of the production process, from harvest to final roast, was carefully controlled to enhance the natural floral character of the cultivar. The result is a concentration of florality that begins subtly, but intensifies with each successive infusion, with notes of honey, orange blossom water, and sandalwood.
Brew: 4 grams・150 ml・205° F・1.5 min
We think this tea is best brewed to the very edge of over-extraction, the better to express its aromatic intensity on the finish. Our starting brew parameters will take the tea shy of that, which will yield sweetness and viscosity. Consider increasing steep time to enhance aromatics.