These four teas of the same type will challenge the taster to distinguish quality grades and demonstrate the range of tastes, aromas, and appearances that can occur within a narrow band.
The samples arrive in pouches numbered from #1 to #4. Along with the samples, you will receive a link to a page that will reveal the name and nature of the teas, to be viewed after the tasting.
Some questions to ask oneself while tasting Set #1 are:
- Smell the leaves in the pouch before looking at them. Can you guess the tea category? Can you narrow it further down?
- What do the appearance of the leaves suggest about the attention and finesse of their processing? Based solely on the appearance, which do you imagine have the best taste? Which do you imagine are the most expensive?
- Tasting and smelling the teas, which notes are shared amongst all teas, and which are unique? Which teas have a greater range of flavor, and which are more focused?
- (Best with gongfu brewing) Try to note the longevity of the tea leaves: how many infusions can you get out of the same leaves?
- After tasting the teas, how would you rank them in terms of quality? Which do you imagine are the most expensive? Try to list them from cheapest to most expensive.
- Last but not least, try to guess the origin and harvest time for each of them.
For an extra challenge, after examining the leaves, have someone else prepare the infusions. Try to match the infusions to the leaves. (See our video Find the Black Sheep for techniques for doing blind tastings by yourself.)