Leaf Type: Green
Where to Buy: Shan Valley
This tea is considered to be the freshest and most sought after tea. Shan First Flush Reserve tea is the first harvest in the year and only occurs once a year, usually in early April.
Learn more about this tea here.
Oh, this tea is AWESOME! I have really enjoyed the first flush teas that Shan Valley has offered this year. They’ve been really lovely, and this tea is certainly no exception to that statement. This is really a delightful green tea.
Earlier this year, I had the opportunity to try last year’s First Flush Green Tea from Shan Valley, so I wasn’t sure how this year’s first flush would differ from last year’s. The dry leaf looks very much the same, dark in color (it almost looks like a black tea or a dark Oolong), but the color liquid these dark leaves produce is a pale greenish-amber color. The aroma of the liquor is fresh and vegetal.
Right off the bat, I can tell you that I find the flavor of this tea to be more forward than last year’s first flush. That is to say, I’m tasting a stronger flavor to the tea. It still has it’s delicate nuances, but I taste more of the sweet, vibrant flavors than I remember tasting in last year’s first flush green.
It is lush and vegetative, reminding me of mild steamed vegetables. And yes, I’m picking up on that bright citrus-y note that I tasted with last year’s tea. I’m also getting a slight creaminess from this cup which I don’t recall experiencing from last year’s tea. Imagine a creamed spinach but with maybe half of the “cream” eliminated from the dish and replaced with a squeeze of fresh lemon. I get some cream, I get some lemon-ish notes and I’m getting that really fresh, exhilarating “green” taste. It’s a really invigorating and refreshing tea!
While I generally prefer most teas hot – and this tea is no exception to that – I really enjoyed this one chilled too. After I finished my cup of this tea, I decided to resteep the leaves and take a sip, and I found that while the creamy tones were lighter in the second resteep, the flavors were still abundant in that second cup of tea. Then I decided to go ahead and chill the rest of the pot, and I brewed a little more to make a half gallon pitcher full of green tea goodness, courtesy of the Shan Valley. And it was so cool and absolutely lovely to drink on these hot summer days we’ve been experiencing.
Shan Valley has some amazing teas to offer – I highly recommend them to any tea lover! This tea company offers a new and exciting tea journey!