White2Tea’s 2013 Gongmei and 2013 Shoumei | Tea Review

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white2tea_2013_shoumei_spoon

Lately, I’ve been learning to appreciate white tea and its nuances. So, I wanted to compare two aged white teas and see the differences.

I will be comparing a gong mei and a shou mei from 2013. Based on the descriptions on the website, both teas come from the Fuding county in Fujian province and were stored in dry/natural conditions in Fujian from 2013 to 2018. The difference between gong mei and shou mei is that gong mei has more buds and a higher grade of leaves than Shou mei.

white2tea_2013_white_tea_spoons

Since the teas were aged, I brewed them like I did with Zhen Tea’ Aged Shou Mei. I started with a 30-second wash, followed by a 45-second infusion and increased the time by 15 seconds intervals.

With all that being said, let’s go!

 

2013 Gongmei

white2tea_2013_gongmei_spoon

Description: “The thick, soothing body of this tea is smooth and calming, with heavy dark fruit fragrances.”

Instructions: Gongfu style brewing 

Review: The dry leaves were tightly packed into a cake and I could make out the leaves and fuzzy buds. It smelled of sweet, floral and plum and became sweeter after it was warmed in the pre-heated gaiwan. The leaves were chocolate brown and had a sweet fruity smell after the first infusion. The liquor was a light yellow with a floral, fruity, and hay smell.

white2tea_2013_gongmei_wet_leaves

30 second rinse: The liquor was a faint yellow with a sweet fruity and trace hay flavour

Infusion 1 (45 seconds): The liquor had a honey flavour, alongside hay, herbal and fruity sweetness. There was a faint lingering of bitterness at the tail end

Infusion 2 (1 minute): The liquor was a darker yellow colour with similar flavour as Infusion 1. The flavour was more hay-like at the end of the sip

Infusion 3 (1.15 minute): The floral notes have persisted along with the hay flavour. The liquor was a golden yellow colour like honey.

Infusion 4 (1.30 minutes): The liquor was faint

Overall, I really enjoyed the floral honey notes! This may be my first time trying gong mei and I need to find more (3.5/5 rating).

  • Type: White tea
  • Origin: China (Fujian province)
  • Caffeine: Unknown
  • Ingredients: Aged white tea
  • Company: white2tea

 

2013 Shoumei

white2tea_2013_shoumei_spoon

Description: “The soothing body of this tea is smooth and light, with fragrances that range from cinnamon and honey to red dates.”

Instructions: Gongfu style brewing

Review: The dry leaves were similar to the gong mei with large leaves and fuzzy buds. It smelled like hay and herbs. After infusion, the leaves were chocolate brown and had a fruity smell. The liquor started off amber yellow with a hay smell.

white2tea_2013_shoumei_wet_leaves

30 second rinse: The liquor was a golden yellow, and had a herbal and roasted taste. The taste lingered in the mouth

Infusion 1 (45 seconds): The liquor was herbal, hay and roasted with some astringency at the tail end

Infusion 2 (1 minute): The liquor was a darker yellow colour with a roasted smell. It had a thick mouthfeel that coated the mouth. It had a floral and honey note, with some roasted undertones which lingered in the mouth. There was also a bit more astringency

Infusion 3 (1.15 minute): In comparison to Infusion 2, the liquor was much thinner in texture. It was a golden yellow colour with fruity, hay and faint floral taste.  There was a bit of astringency as well

Infusion 4 (1.30 minutes): The liquor was faint

The shou meis I’ve had in the past tended to be more hay-like, so I was surprised how roasted this tasted and how dark the liquor became. I wonder if that is due to the aging (3/5 rating).

  • Type: White tea
  • Origin: China (Fujian province)
  • Caffeine: Unknown
  • Ingredients: Aged white tea
  • Company: white2tea

Final Thoughts

white2tea_2013_wwhite_tea_compare

I have to say, it was nice to be able to enjoy each tea but also compare them side-by-side. I found the shou mei had more of a roasted note which I didn’t expect. I found I enjoyed the honey floral notes of the gong mei just slightly more.

When comparing teas like this, I find it really helps me hone in on the subtle differences. I can’t wait to compare more teas!

The question of the post: What teas should I compare next?

3 comments on “White2Tea’s 2013 Gongmei and 2013 Shoumei | Tea Review”

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