Monday, January 18, 2010

Taiwanese Er Mei Shan Old Bush Eastern Beauty

It was a great holiday season for me. Wonderful Family time, food, gifts, tea gatherings and great company filled up the festive month.

Chinese New Year is around the corner, so before that, I wish to taste most of the newly collected. Over this weekend, I got to taste an amazing brandy, some good aged smoke and a special tea from Michael Wong.

The Tea Gallery. NYC

Er Mei Mountain is around Dong Ding area South of Nantou, Taiwan. This tea was harvested in Fall 2009, from old bushes around 1000 meter elevation. They renovate the tree every 2 years and let it regrow to intensify the flavor and characters.

Trimming/pruning in such technique is common in wine and olive harvesting. Also choicest Wuyi Yan Chai or Feng Huang Old bushes are harvested once every 2 years instead of normal 2 seasons per year.

Dry Leaves and Aroma:
Strong white buds, with 5 different hues. Meaty and robust, with sweet honeysuckle, orchid, muscat, faint walnut and dry late winter foliage.

Brewing Parameter:
150ml Yixing Kyusu '70s / 6 grams of tea / full boiled fresh polandspring water.
Flush rinse / sit 30 s. /1st - flush/ 2nd - 20s / sit 2 mins / 3rd - 10s / 4th - 30s / 5th - 60s. All boiling crab-eye temp.

Liquor Color and Aroma:
Pale golden yellow. Clear and with tiny white hair (from the buds). Steep color gets darker reddish yellow till the 5th brew.
Honey, nutty, wine grapes, floral and Darjeeling FF on the nose. Character of smooth and thick mouth feel. Long lasting sweet floral aftertaste after 1 min.

Ending Notes:
Not a regular Eastern Beauty with delicate feminine and high perfumy notes. More body and robust like a Ella Fitzgerald song. Could be aged and developed into fuller/thicker body and sandalwood character, if vacuum-sealed in cold storage.

1 comment:

author said...

Hey Tim, sorry I missed this post before. I will have to try Michael/TG's Eastern Beauty.

I have had two Eastern Beauty's from different vendors in the past month -- both were with a beautiful bodied quality I think of as dark ruddy caramelized sugar... taste came 3/4 through sip experience. I wondered if it was an exceptional season perhaps? This sounds wonderful, thanks.
- Janine

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