Seller: Tea’s Delight Amsterdam
Link to seller’s website.
Price: 0.3 $/gram
Our grade: 8/10
The tea for this review is a special one for me as it comes from one of the nicest teahouses I visited in Europe. The couple owning Tea’s Delight in Amsterdam have an obvious passion for tea and each time I was lucky enough to visit, I was greeted with warmth and professionalism. The teas they offer, at least the ones I had the chance to try, were all very delicious.
Meizhou Spring is a green tea that we’ve had in our collection for 3 years. When I bought it, the owners mentioned it originates from the region they come from. This tea has become a standard for Chinese green tea for me, as it is a reference for comparison with other green teas.
The dry leaves: give off a fairly strong smell as if the leaves were recently fried in a wok or grilled on charcoal, mixed with walnuts, chestnuts, shrouded in a raw green fragrance. It’s similar to longjing in a way, however it has a distinctive aroma. The leaves are fairly broken up and fragmented and have a green-grey matte look.
The warm leaves: give off a very similar aroma as earlier only a bit stronger and somewhat sweeter. There’s another distinctive note similar to freshly roasted coffee. After rinsing, the smell of the leaves transforms into something woodier, floral and sweet at the same time.
Tea colour: a rather cloudy greenish yellow.
The tea session consisted of 4 grams in our 100 ml gaiwan, with a glass serving pitcher and porcelain cups.
Steeping temperature and times:
Texture and body of the tea: medium thickness, it leaves behind a lubricated sensation after swallowing.
First infusion: the tea soup is sweet and comes with a roasted flavor, walnuts, green grilled vegetables, green grilled bell peppers, grilled zucchinis. It is slightly bitter at first, but the sensation fades fast.
Second infusion to the fourth: the tea moves on with a certain feeling of coziness in the taste and certainly helps us relax and unwind. The roasted nuts flavor alongside the grilled green bell pepper is still present. The taste is sweet and slightly bitter. The bitterness has some warmth to it as it melds very well into the roasted flavour. The sweetness is reminiscent of sugar sweetness. The green tea dimension can be felt clearly: it carries the aroma you’d expect when having a spinach dish or when chewing a fresh blade of grass.
Fifth infusion onwards: the tea starts to lose its intensity but stays relatively constant in its aromatic and taste profile. The roasted walnuts are still there, alongside some miso soup algae or even spinach. The aroma we get after drinking is slightly bitter and reminiscent of raw wax cherry kernels, the soft ones.
The spent leaves are dark green. As noted previously they are fairly broken up and fragmented, however it looks as if the harvesting process was rather uniform, probably only the 2nd and 3rd leaves were picked (no buds). The texture of the leaves is rather oily which might lead me to think it’s coming from tea plants with ‘meaty’ leaves.
Overall, our experience with this tea was quiet and relaxing. The taste of this tea is kind of a ‘sticky green’ that really helped us unwind.
Meizhou Spring stems from the mountains in the Yannanfei Tea Garden. Because of the good air quality, it’s an ideal place for the tea to grow. Until recently, people of Meizhou used this tea for their own consumption only. Now, you can enjoy this tea too.