Monday, July 14, 2014
Tea Drunk's New Spring Teas
If you are in the NYC area and haven't had the pleasure of enjoying tea at tea drunk, this needs to change. Immediately! A couple of weeks ago I had the pleasure of previewing their new spring teas. Owner Shunan traveled to plantations in China and hand selected teas to bring back. She plucked and processed many of the teas she brought back!
We sampled 6 fresh, vibrant teas. They were all so good that I had a hard time choosing my favorite. They each have unique flavors which are of course a direct result from the location, weather, and processing. The teas we had were:
Bai Mu Dan: From Dian Tou, Fu Ding. This is a rare white tea which was almost wiped out after a drought in the 70s. I love that the call it "little veggie tea". I'm not usually drawn to white teas, but this one was gentle yet complex.
Huang Ya: From Golden Rooster Mountain, Huo Shan. This is a wild, traditionally handmade yellow tea. This tea requires patience during processing. I think I accidentally skipped this one, but everyone seemed to enjoy it immensely.
Shui Xian: From Wu Dong, Pheonix Mountain. A true origin oolong tea. It has been grown and processed in this location for almost 1200 years! This is an aromatic, woody tea. Definitely not to be missed.
Tie Luo Han: A cliff oolong that has a satisfying deeply roasted flavor. It also has a notable thickness on the palate. I enjoyed the darker characteristics of this tea.
Dian Hong: This is a red (black) tea Shunan herself helped to produce. She told the story of how difficult it was to combat the hot sun and tediously pick out the drying leaves that weren't the ideal fermentation level. This was one of my favorite teas, it was sweet but gentle. You can get many steepings out of this tea, which in my experience is unique for a red tea.
I noted an interesting proverb I learned from Shunan regarding tea preparation (these are not her words)- preparing good tea involves listening to the tea. Poor tea preparation occurs when the tea listens to you. So true!
Tasting the teas at this unique shop is a special experience. You cannot find these teas or teaware anywhere else in the area. I was tempted to take home a tea pet, I wish I had!
I was so absorbed in the teas, I didn't take too many pictures. But you can see my original review here for more about tea drunk. It was a lovely afternoon of tea drinking, and I was able to meet fellow tea enthusiasts that I hope to see again soon.
If you are in the NYC area and haven't been to tea drunk, go now!