Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Silver Needle

Tea: Silver Neeldle
Vendor: Jing Tea
Price: £6.90/50g
Source: Fujian, China
Vendor Description: Picked at the end of March this year, long, soft and downy, Silver Needle comprises the first spring buds of the Da-Bai tea plant. It comes from Fuding, a serene region with icy waterfalls and crystal clear lakes. The peaceful setting is reflected in the flavour - soft and mellow,with the freshness of honeydew melon and the soothing sweetness of a ripe cantaloupe. It’s an easy-drinking tea that's ideal for drinking on long and lingering afternoons, or well into the night.

Leaf: The leaf for this Silver Needle is a very vibrant green and white mix of hues. More so than most SN the color is really standing out with this tea. It has the distinctive fluffiness of a SN in a quite exemplary form. The bottom end of the buds have small amounts of blackening which I have seen on a few other SN teas before. The aroma is very vibrant and creamy. It has an almost peachish aroma to it.

1st Infusion Parameters: 5g, 50z, 185F, 1:20

1st Infusion: This infusion has a golden yellow hue to it, and the aroma is thick and sweet. It is bold and in charge, and is a perfect example of the creamy aroma of a SN. The flavor is fresh and crisp, not something seen in many SN, but it is still a light hearted tea. The flavor overall is quite well rounded with a slight conservative emptiness to it.

2nd Infusion Parameters: 2:00, 185F

2nd Infusion: This infusion has the same golden color, and the aroma is even more enthusiastic. Everything about this tea simply says vibrance. The flavor is creamy yet light, thick, but not overly so.

Rating: 10/10

Conclusion: This is one of the best SNs that I've tried to date. It is slightly different than some others in that the key to this tea is the vibrance and the freshness of the SN. A few others focus more on the subtle flavor and the creaminess. These aspects are present in this tea, but take second seat to the vibrant fresh flavors.

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