The product is made from high grade solarized tea leaves and experiences a series of processing steps, such as moderate fermentation, screening and tipping and special winnowin and sorting. It is an exquisite tea processed from strictly selected ripe materials. The tea leaves are tight and slender. It brews a mellow flavor and a smooth taste with rich aroma.
Last winter was so cold and so long we thought it would never end. But it did, and now it is as hot as a 4th of July firecracker outside. A lot of tea drinkers slow down on their sipping in the summer, or switch to iced tea. I drink iced tea year round and the heat does not slow me down on my steaming cup of hot tea. I love air conditioning. :)
I haven't enjoyed a puer in a while, so this morning I rinsed out the Yixing teapot and selected Golden Branch Jade Leaf for review. This one is a loose leaf version from Berylleb - you can find them on ebay.
The leaf is beautiful. It is an obvious Yunnan. There are lots of golden tips in here along with the very chocolate looking leaf in the short little curly twists. The aroma of the leaf is slightly woodsy and leather.
My prep was 212 F water and about a 45 second steep. I say about because the teapot pours slowly taking several seconds. My crystal teapot pours about the same so it is just my impatience speaking. Tea is about taking your time and fully enjoying each step. I am working on it.
The brew pours with a rosy tint. Very pretty. The cup is more orange tinted and turns a burnt umber color as it cools in the mug. See patience is rewarded.
The wet leaf does not expand a lot. It is very dark chocolate in color with some barnyard scent.
The sip is very nice. At once I get a cross between book leather and horse tack. I notice some mild metallic notes that are sensed more along the sides of the tongue. There is no bitterness and no off putting notes. I noticed almost no dryness while sipping. The flavor is full but gentle.
I decided to add Splenda to brighten the flavor - and it did, but not a lot. I could drink this without it. That suggests to me that it already has a natural sweetness, which with my sweet tooth I wouldn't notice it as such.
As the cup cools this takes on more of a nutty profile with oak bark notes. Yes, I used to chew bark as a kid. It was all in the name of science of course (not). A friend of mine said this had notes of apple. I didn't get apple but I trust his tasting skills.
I may be re-steeping this one all day. After 36 oz this was still going strong. I really like this one.