Hey there Teacups! I’m back today with a Stateside Steeps post and this time around I’m going to be reviewing Adagio Masters – 2019 Huang Shan Mao Feng. I normally wouldn’t feature one brand twice in one month put when it comes to Masters Teas since I finally managed to start reviewing the 2019 teas I was sent I’ve not been able to stop myself from opening another and jumping into a tasting session with another amazing tea. All of my experiences with Masters Teas have been fantastic and I’m so honoured that I was given the chance to try out such a wide variety of the teas they have to offer.
My favourite thing about trying these teas is that aside from providing me with great tea experiences throughout my tasting sessions, they have also enabled me to learn about so many new growing regions and farmers which has helped me start the path to achieving part of my 2020 / 2021 tea goals. I’ve gained so much tea knowledge through trying these teas and I’ll forever be so thankful for that.
Here’s what Masters Teas themselves have to say about this tea over on their website: “Typical Mao Feng tea is known for its needle-like leaves and a slight floral overtone. Our premium Huang Mao Feng leaves nothing to be desired. Harvested in April, it is plucked with one bud and two leaves resulting in a fresh dark/medium green leaf. The infusion produces a pale yellow/green cup color with a floral aroma, luscious buttery texture, soft notes of lychee and delicate sweet grass.”
“Our Huang Shan Mao Feng is grown at 800 meters above sea level in She County, Anhui. The hand-plucked leaves contain one bud and 2 to 3 leaves. Harvested in mid-April 2020, the 5 cm long leaves are grown from plants that are 4 years old.”
Tea Tasting Notes
For this tasting session, like all other teas I do gong fu sessions with, I tried this on its own steeped multiple times in my gaiwan with no additional things added to it (such as sweetener). The first steep I did for 2 and half mins and then every addition steep I added 30 seconds on to the steep time. I did 5 steep in total all at 76°C and used freshly filtered water for them all. Each steep was 250ml and I used 6 – 7g of the leaf in my sample bag, I have smaller gaiwans but honestly I prefer to use my biggest one and get the most I can out of these tasting sessions.
Steep 1: The vegetal notes were prominent in this cup but still on the lighter side of things, sweet grass notes, straw, subtle honey sweetness and ever so slight lychee in the aftertaste. Normally teas never deliver in every single thing they mention in their descriptions but this one did from the very first. It definitely made a great first impression on me and after this steep I was so eager to see what notes in it flavour profile would change as the steeps went on.
Steep 2: Similar to the first steep only the vegetal became much less prominent and balanced themselves out. Again notes of sweet grass, straw, slight honey and lychee in the aftertaste. Less drying than the first cup.
Steep 3: This steep is where the lychee notes came to the forefront and took over the cup which I loved in fact this was my favourite steep of them all. Light vegetal notes, sweet grass and honey. Much smoother in the mouth and not drying at all.
Steep 4: Similar to steep 3 with the prominent lychee notes, but the vegetal notes, honey notes and sweet grass notes really started to waiver looking back I probably wouldn’t have taken it through many more steeps like this. This was its last well rounded steep. I have to say steep 3 and 4 were probably my favourites from this whole session. I just love that prominent lychee note paired with the sweet grass and straw notes it just worked so perfectly.
Steep 5: Similar to the fourth steep but all of its notes even the lychee were much too light for me. I enjoyed this steep but it wasn’t as well balanced as the 4th steep and I probably should have stopped there. The vegetal, sweet grass, and honey notes were all incredibly light and I don’t know if next time I’ll do more than 4 steeps.
Overall this was a very light tea in general but I enjoyed it quite a bit it was a nice break in my day. In ways this definitely reminded me of a light, slight dry, fruity white wine it definitely had that kind of feel to it especially in the first three steeps. I was really surprised by how prominent the lychee notes were especially in the third steep which was by far my favourite steep of this whole tasting session.
This is definitely a tea I would purchase again and I would be really interested to see how its overall flavour profile changes over the years. This to me is a great tea to drink mid – late afternoon as it is so relaxing to drink. I also feel like it would be a really nice tea to do an outdoor going fu session with in nice park during summer or spring.
Overall Teacup Rating: 5/5
If you want to find out more about Adagio’s Masters Teas and purchase some of this blend (from the 2019 or 2020 harvest) you can do both here. As always if you have any questions at all either leave them in the comments or send them to me on Twitter/Instagram @teaisawishblog and I’ll answer them all as soon as I can.
Speak to you all again soon. Happy Steeping – Kimberley
*the tea featured in this post was gifted to me for the purpose of this review. All opinions are my own and have not been paid for *