Think you know tea? Some teas are very distinctive in dry form while others are “mimickers” and tend to look a lot like other teas. Just for fun here, I’m posting a few teas and letting you test your tea acumen, starting with some of the obvious ones and going to some that are a bit trickier. No prizes here, unfortunately, except your own sense of self-satisfaction at knowing any of the tougher ones.
I know that none of you peeked at the answers here before making your own guesses (it’s the honor system) and some of you did not need to guess but knew the answers. See which you got right and give yourself a gold star for each correct answer.
D. Tie Kuan Yin — The Iron Goddess Oolong, a very desirable tea that is also fairly well known among tea aficionados. The dry tea tends to be fairly recognizable to those who have it on a fairly regular basis. (More info.)
E. Young Pu-erh — Probably fooled ya with this one. For many pu-erh drinkers, the loose form is almost unknown, plus this is a “young” one, that is, it hasn’t sat around in storage for months or years, getting more aged. It tends to be earthy in a pleasant way and can be steeped as long as 10 minutes without being bitter. (More info.)
F. Tarajulie Estate Assam — This is an orthodox Assam and tends to look like other orthodox Assams in dry form. The flavor, though, is very different from those Assams. You really need to steep and taste a tea to “see” the difference! (See my review.)
Now it’s time to pick one, steep it up, and enjoy!
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