This tea is gorgeous. I actually tipped a spoonful into my hand and examined it in the light, over the top of my glasses so I could really enjoy the detail. These are little curls of army green with swirls of white – real, true, pearly white. In appearance it seems more like an oolong than a green tea.
The odd thing is that this does not taste even remotely like the Bi Luo Chun I have had before, which we refer to in my house as “Cheerios Tea.” That’s how much it tastes like oats and specifically just like the cereal! But does anyone expect tea from Silk Road to taste like something you have had before? I look upon Silk Road as an exotic treat.
So if it doesn’t taste like I expected, what DOES it taste like? And furthermore, why does it taste so different?
The answer to the different taste may lie in the fact that this is a pre-Ching Ming tea. This means that the leaves are some of the very first ones picked of the new spring season, usually at the end of March and beginning of April.
After steeping, I run my fingers through the leaves, now unfurled and beautifully green, in the steeping basket. They are unbelievably soft! They are silky and smooth, and so irresistible that I can’t help but eat a couple of them.
The liquor is pale, a soft yellow, and the second steep is paler still.
My perception of the flavors does not match the description of the website. While it is smooth, it also is making a tingle on my tongue with a gentle and light briskness. There is definitely a floral overtone but it is ghostlike, appearing and disappearing. There is also a vegetal flavor that reminds me of rutabaga, but softer. The body is thin. And I detect a bare hint of roasty flavor, or at least a deep tone under the briskness.
What this tea doesn’t taste like is oats, or buttery, or creamy. And for my Bi Luo Chun, I think I may prefer the oat-y ones.
Want to Know More About This Tea?
Leaf Type: Green
Where to Buy: Silk Road Teas
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Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!
These charming, tightly-wound light-and-dark green balls unfurl dramatically into curls that Shirley Temple would be proud of. Watching them expand is like watching a slow-motion figure skating performance.
The resulting flavor is a delicious, buttery, almost nutty green. Its flavor is subtle. The light touch is not to be confused with weakness, however. It manages to leave a lasting impact that’s the epitome of a warm afternoon in a sunlit window, watching trees wave in the breeze. The perfect pillow upon which to meditate.
Speaking of which, my meditation practice has stalled, and this reminds me: I need to get back to that. It felt really good. I’d like to get back to that state of mind. Until then, there’s this tea.
Here’s the scoop!
Leaf Type: Green
Where to Buy: Silk Road Teas
Jasmine Pearls is a delight to watch unfold as well as to drink. This tea is certainly one of China’s finest quality jasmine offerings. The quality of the Pearl rests with two key attributes: a high-quality, spring pick green that is hand rolled then kept in cool place to await the jasmine harvest. Secondly, the number of scentings the pearls receive is key to the quality of their jasmine taste. The best quality pearls are scented up to 20 times but more typically 7-8 times for today’s “high-grade” pearl. The resulting jasmine flavor should be smooth and naturally sweet building on the sweet notes of the green tea pearl. Lot is 2018 crop and is made to EU Standard. Lot # JP-1.
Why we selected this particular lot. The white downy color that wraps our pearls indicates an early spring green tea harvest. This indicates the pearl is higher grade and the base green tea taste is sweet. Our source for this tea is in Fujian Province where we believe the best jasmines teas are made. The leaves unfurled and showed two leaves and a bud and a rich green color. The scenting of this lot is natural, soft on the tongue and lingering. The jasmine flower petals are minimal, again indicating a higher grade. Once rolled, the pearls wait until the jasmine flowers are harvested later in the summer. For a high-grade pearl such as ours, the flower petals are introduced and then removed after imparting their fragrance.
Tasting notes. The aroma of this tea is exquisite. With water, the pearl releases a sweet and delicate green tea redolent with the fresh scent of jasmine. The taste is very natural, smooth and clean. The jasmine will soothe. It goes very well food as well.