Wednesday, January 14, 2015

What-Cha: Nepal 2nd Flush 2014 Silver Needle White Tea, A Tea Review

Being forced to be in the family room to do my computer work is really sapping my inspiration, you would think a bright room with lots of windows would make me happy, but nope. Not sure why but I have never liked this room and I avoid it at all costs, soon, my power cord will be here. Sadly that is all the intro I can muster today, so on to tea!

So, it is Wednesday, meaning that my journey to try all of What-Cha's teas continues! Today we are looking at Nepal 2nd Flush 2014 Silver Needle White Tea, a fuzzy tea after my own heart. What can I say, I love fuzzy teas, be they gold or silver! This particular tea comes from the high mountains of Nepal, specifically the pesticide free Greenland Organic Farm, this is one of several teas I have had from this farm, and I can say from the past teas that they all have a distinct mountain air taste and feel to them. I am completely ok with admitting that might be a 'mind over matter' thing, knowing the teas come from such a mountainous place. Like a little bit of the spirit of the place has entered the leaf and come along for me to enjoy, a mini vacation in a cup. The leaves have a subtle sweet and green aroma, blending a bit of fresh hay and sweet corn with distinct herbaceous notes of sage and lettuce. It is dominated by the more herbaceous note and finished with a tiny note of tomato leaf. The aroma reminds me a bit of a blend of the more traditional Chinese silver needle and Kenyan silver needle, which is pretty neat. 

Whoa! After a steeping in my gaiwan, the aroma of the leaves did a massive transition to sweetness. The aroma is a blend of sweet grass, fresh hay, apricot, a tiny touch of sesame nuttiness, and a finish that is some intense mouthwatering honeysuckle. The liquid also pretty sweet with dominating notes of honey and apricot, with a backup band of hay and sweet sesame paste. 

Ah, I love the first steep of silver needles, and fuzzy teas in general, they always tickle my mouth ever so gently and it makes me giggle. Trichome power! Fuzziness aside, the taste is a pretty neat blend of sweet and leafy, there are notes of honeysuckle and sweetcorn along with sage and lettuce. The finish is a distinct juicy apricot that lingers for while between sips. 

Second steeping time! The aroma of this steeping is sweet and fruity with notes of honeysuckle and apricots and a pleasantly refreshing sage finish. The taste starts off with cooling and slightly dry notes of sage and lettuce which transitions pretty cleanly into sweet corn and sesame seeds. I say transitions cleanly because really the transition is crazy smooth, none of this early 2000s era Power Point checkerboard transitions, this is straight up sideswipe...ok, that got a little weird, but hopefully you can see my point. The finish of the second steep takes the same path as the first steep and finishes with sweet and juicy apricot. I said at the beginning of my rambling that this tea is like a blending of Chinese and Kenyan silver needle, and after tasting it I certainly stand by that, it blends the notes from both teas in a really tasty way, I like! 

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