Sunday, October 18, 2015

Beautiful Taiwan Tea Company: Taiwanese Dragonwell, A Tea Review

Yeah, I might have stayed up til 8 AM playing Minecraft, what of it? I have created the ultimate awesome, blending my computer area, my painting area, and my tea area was at first quite epic...but with the inclusion of my Xbox 360 and a nice monitor and speakers, I have the ability to tea, paint, game, and watch videos at the same time. As one of my Instagram friends said, I never have to leave! I just need a tiny fridge, a small gas burner, and a bathroom and I really would never have to leave my bedroom.

Taking a break from my hard work of Minecraft and painting, teaing and writing...wait...to bring you today's tea! We are looking at another tea from Beautiful Taiwan Tea Company, their Taiwanese Dragonwell. Now before you start going all 'Amanda that is totally not really a Dragonwell' shush, they admit that, but they also admit that the traditional growing region of that beloved flat green tea is a bit problematic, and you know, I love tradition, but as a blue-haired pseudo-mad scientist, I love experimenting and pushing the comfort barriers. This tea is a fine example of that, taking tradition and tweaking it to something new. Using the Qingxin varietal grown at a low elevation, this tea is processed to be like a Dragonwell, so time to see how it compares! Looking at the leaves, it looks like the lovechild between an Oolong and a Dragonwell, the leaves are flat and long...and also kinda huge and very richly green, going into this blind I admit I would have no idea what this tea is. The aroma of the sizable leaves is green and nutty! It smells like my much loved honey sesame candies (it is just honey, toasted sesame, and sugar...and highly addictive) with fresh turnip greens, bell peppers, and a touch of lima beans. I admit, there is a strong similarity to Dragonwell, like a sweeter version of it.

I decided to use my engagement gaiwan for these leaves, since the leaf size is a bit massive, plus it is pretty and needs to get more use! The aroma of the now soggy and very verdant leaves is more vegetal than the dry leaves, it blends green beans, turnips, turnip greens, bell peppers and a buttery finish. Mmm, buttery turnips, this tea is making me hungry. The liquid smells quite buttery and green, notes of bell pepper and green beans, lima beans and a touch of honey at the finish.

The lovechild between a Dragonwell and Oolong is such a fitting description. This is the most buttery smooth Green Tea I have ever had, seriously, it is intense! It starts out very sweet, sesame and honey explodes over my tongue, radiating from honey at the tip to sesame toastiness at the midtaste. This goes on a magical journey to lima beans at the finish.

Second steeping time! The aroma is, well, it is a but surprising, notes of salty butter and a touch of seaweed and spinach with a sesame finish, well that was fascinating! The taste starts intensely sweet again, so much sweet honey and sesame seeds, again it is a magical journey of buttery smoothness and sweet. Then the finish is lima beans and a bit of a lingering buttery aftertaste.

Third steeping, the aroma is a blend of butter, spinach, green beans, and a finish of honey sweetness. The mysterious and kinda awesome seaweed note from the previous steep is a ghostly memory. The taste and texture is still so very buttery, and so smooth, I find myself feeling a bit melty and relaxed, it is a nice feeling. The taste starts sweet and honey like and moves to sesame seeds and buttery lima beans and just the lightest note of green beans at the finish. So, how does it compare? You get the seal of approval from me, it is an unusual Dragonwell, but it has its own distinct personality, one that is delicious!

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