I was recently contacted by a representative from Adagio Teas telling me about a new website they've launched for exclusive high-grade artisan teas - Master Teas. The sight is geared towards serious tea enthusiasts and connoisseurs. The rep wondered if I'd be interested in trying some samples.
I like Adagio teas so I said yes. The intention of Master Teas is to share the finest, freshest specialty teas direct from the farms where they grow. I selected five samples - 1 green, 1 yellow, 1 oolong, and 2 blacks. They arrived on the weekend.
I decided to start with the green tea - meng ding mao feng [or Misty Peak Downy Tip] from Sichuan, China, harvested in May, 2019. Very fresh!
The front of the package reads: Deep green tea leaves with strikingly bright, silvery leaf buds. Its dry aroma is that of hops and white grape, while the liquor is sweet, pear-like, crisp and lingering.
Back of package reads: Savor teas made by artisan farmers whose devotion and skills set them apart as true masters.
The dry leaf before infusion is curly and dark green with some strands of silvery leaf buds. Taste and smell is subjective. I've never smelled hops before, but the pleasant aroma reminded me of licorice rather than white grapes. It didn't have a grassy aroma as many green teas do.
The infused leaf is a bright green, and the aroma is the faint scent of freshly cooked green beans. I happen to like fresh green beans, so the aroma of them cooking is pleasant to me, but the brewed tea [liquor] doesn't taste like green beans.
The infusion [liquor] is a pale green, and absolutely delicious. I give it five stars - it's probably the best green tea I've ever drunk. There was no vegetal taste, rather a delicate, mildly sweet taste, with no bitterness whatsoever. The second infusion was just as good as the first. As yet, I haven't gone beyond two infusions, but I'm sure it will hold up to more. The website said the tea isn't pan fried, rather steamed, which gives it a unique taste more akin to Japanese teas.
I'll review the other four teas over the next few days. In the meantime, I'll end this post with something even sweeter than meng ding mao feng - my two little great-granddaughters, Evie and Juliette. The expression on Evie's face [her angelic eyes] melts my heart!