Wednesday, May 8, 2013

SerendipiTea Fu Man Chu

Country of Origin: not listed
Leaf Appearance: small, dark and slightly twisted
Ingredients: Jasmine Petals (Organic), Pouchong (Organic), Pu-erh (Organic)
Steep time: 5 minutes
Water Temperature: 212 degrees
Preparation Method: ceramic teacup and mesh infuser
Liquor: reddish brown

My friend Jo of A Gift of Tea raved about this tea so much that I just had to give it a try. The ingredient list sounded like such an odd combination. Jasmine is seldom seen outside of green teas. Pouchong and puerh are also pretty opposite when it comes to taste. I steeped the leaves for five minutes and that seemed to be a sweet spot for me. Any longer than that would make the tea too astringent. The taste was complex and incredibly well balanced. It was sweet, vegetal, floral and earthy all at once. None of elements overpowered the others but they all sort of danced in and out of the forefront. There was enough astringency to balance the sweetness of the jasmine but not so much so as to make it bitter. As it cooled, the puerh began to dominate the flavor profile. This tea lent itself perfectly to nibbling on a bit of white chocolate. I wouldn't recommend adding any sort of milk or sweetener as that would likely throw off the intricate balance of this blend.

You can find out more about this tea here.