Jin Xuan Charcoal

Jin Xuan Charcoal - dry leaf

Another month, another order placed at House of Tea, another free sample to play with.

This time they’ve opted to tempt me with another tasty Oolong.

The leaves used here are of the Jin Xuan cultivar, and were grown in Ming Jian township, Nantou county, Taiwan.

During processing the leaves were roasted in the traditional way over charcoal, which apparently is a seldom used technique nowadays.

House of Tea’s notes state that this method of roasting requires great skill in order to strike the right balance in the tea.

They go on to say that the roasting gives the tea a good deal of its character, as well as making it a good candidate for long term storage/ageing.

The dry leaf had a noticeable but mellow “roast” aroma – it wasn’t harsh or in your face.

After the leaves had been in the warmed up pot a short while I managed to pick up biscuits, brown sugar, and a sweet mineral thing.

Steeping method
Water Used: Filtered tap water
Weight of dry leaf: 3 grams
Infusion style: Western
Steeping vessel: 200 ml ceramic teapot
Water temperature: 95°C
No. & duration: 3 infusions of 3, 3, and 4 minutes duration

The first infusion had a base of that gentle roastiness, but a sweet floral note came crashing over the top of it. The brown sugar aroma was left clinging to the inside of the empty cup.

Jin Xuan Charcoal - a cup of

Now that the leaves were fully opened the second steeping saw the liquor beefed up a good deal, turning into a real slick and creamy lip sticker. The roast had become more assertive, but the floral aspect was still showing it who was boss.

The third and final round, a 4 minute long infusion, was one of those that should be filed under “drinkable but game over“.

Jin Xuan Charcoal - used leaves

Conclusions

Sometimes a sample will grab you by the lapels and drag you towards its rabbit hole, and this is exactly what happened here. Sooner or later I’m going to have to splash some cash and buy a full sized cargo of these leaves. I can’t help but think that I’d be missing out if I didn’t see how they fared in a gaiwan.

Good stuff.

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2 Responses to Jin Xuan Charcoal

  1. This sounds absolutely fantastic! Thanks for taking the time to review it I feel like I definitely need to give this a try

    Liked by 1 person

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