My first Vietnamese green tea, Purple Rain from Hatvala
Yum. Amber-hued, silky, no astringency, very vegetal and soft on the tongue.
My first try of a Vietnamese tea and by the quality of these leaves I am looking forward to trying the other varietals Hatvala was so kind to send! The flavor is mild, but full and very distinctive, definitely different than any other greens I have had. I am not a huge green tea drinker and would have to say that I like this one more than others I lean towards on my green tea sessions. Better than Jade Earrings even! Just a delight. Track some down if you can and try for yourself. Last note, and I must be mad but this tea in its later steeps has a puerh edge to it to me. This is a very good note, a slight after-bite that reminds me of the few young shengs I enjoy.
The website tells us the following:
This is an artisan tea that is produced in small quantities in a small factory workshop by Mr Chiu and his family. The tea is produced from wild tea trees in Muong Khuong District of Lai Cao Province from leaves harvested by H’Mong ethnic people who live and work in this small community. The defining feature of the tea leaves is that many have a definite purple hue when young due to the unique composition of the soil. The tea is produced using traditional techniques with minimal technology and relies heavily on Mr Chiu’s skill and experience. Fresh leaves are drum baked in an oven fired by longan wood, rolled and dried several times until the perfect balance is achieved.