Two years back when I was a big fan of Longfeng, a local tea shop, the owner got married and made two minicakes along that occasion and I bought two sets of these, trusting they would be great. The first minicake I'll write about is the Phoenix, coming from Jie Liang in Bu Lang.
Photos go first again
The leaves do have a sort of strange reddish tint, but the first two photos overemphasized that so I took the other two in direct sunlight. Looking at wet leaves, they have a reasonably green color. Some are a bit reddish, but nothing terrible really.
The taste is described as "very strong, extremely rich and complex, with dominating tone of meadow flowers". The whole description sounds like of Cheng Zhi Tong's literary pupil. Anyway, there is certainly some truth in the description. It is rather strong, reasonably complex and the meadow flowers are truly present (although different from the meadow flowers found in Jinuoshan You Le teas). I do not think this tea to be yet extremely rich though.
I enjoyed the first brew the most - it was rather thick, sweet, flowery and all that. Sadly, from the second brew on, the redness suggested by leaves appeared, along with quite overpowering taste which I'd describe as "soapy". Usually, I'd blame bad storage, but all my other teas age to my contentment and this one is in the same conditions as the rest.
The strange soapy taste is a pity. The tea feels good in mouth, it is active and it has an excellent and long aftertaste and hui gan. Except the main taste, it is very good. Actually, when I brewed the tea using less leaves and longer steepings, the tea did much better - the soapiness is probably not a feature in itself, but too large amount of a certain green taste.
I don't know, the funny taste may age away... it hopefully will. The tea is declared as ment for longer-term storage (why is it pressed rather lightly and in only 100g cakes then?) so it is not wise to judge too strictly now I guess.