In the opening pages of The Korean Way Of Tea by Brother Anthony and Hong Kyeong-Hee ask the reader to imagine what it would be like to arrive at a home in the early morning hours. The host has brought water from a mountain spring and made tea for you with leaves harvested from her own tea bushes, made with her own two hands. Nothing but the sounds of a bubbling mountain spring and fresh, crisp, spring air. Well, evidently, this tea was made by the very same person they are referring to in the book. I am honored!
A few weeks ago I received a package from Arthur and he kindly included this tea along with the others I had ordered. Thank you Arthur! He couldn't remember which he had sent, hence the title of this post. If I had to guess I would say this is Sejak, the dry leaves are a little thicker and chunkier than I would expect from an Ujeon. I have only had Ujeon once before so it,s not as though I really know what I,m talking about here.
The aroma from the dry leaf is pristine, clean and sweet. Notes of pine, grain and florals. Very pungent but not heavy. Why can,t all my green teas smell so gorgeous? I wonder how much this tea costs?
The sweet smell of toasted grain and pine wafts from the pot as I pour out the first infusion. Very rich but delicate and balanced. A tad too yellow for a Ujeon, don,t ya think?
The second infusions color is much more yellow and not quite as clear as the first, it,s also sweeter. What I find interesting about this tea is that it has a very full and rich mouth feel but the flavors are never heavy and dull. When the tea starts to fade in later infusions it,s flavor and aroma stays very clean and pure. As opposed to heavy dull and chalky.
Tiny, tiny little baby leaves, what a pain this must have been to harvest. A labor of love I guess. God Bless Em!
Hi Bret, Thanks for posting about Yi Ho Young's special tea. It is not her woojeong. She simply calls it her “special tea”. They sometimes produce teas between woojeon and sejak like Dong Cheon’s muwi-sejak or guk-woo produced by Soa Tea another artisan producer whose teas I offer.ReplyDelete
The note reference re: Brother Anthony was not referring to his participation in making this tea but rather to his love of and his introduction of her and her teas. She is one of his favorite producers. His friend and co-author Hong Kyeong-Hee has made similar tea together with Yi Ho Young on a special occasion.
Her teas are truly Korean teas - hand picked and totally hand processed over an open wood fire. Very few others tea producers if any do this anymore it is a true venture of love. Many artisan producers are using small machines to roll their tea leaves and I don’t blame them. I have an arrangement with her to obtain her teas but must buy at retail prices. The tea you tasted sells for about $65 for 80g. I can get it. As you know I sell tea to promote Korean Art and Culture more than for great monetary profit. I may sell it at my cost. I'll be posting more on this tea and the producer on my Morning Crane Tea blog soon.
It is good to see you using Park Jong Il's teapot. They are great for these Korean teas.ReplyDelete
This comment has been removed by the author.Delete
Arthur, Thanks for stopping by. As you already know, Yi Ho Yeongs teas are superb. Without a doubt the best Korean tea Ive ever had. I am happy that you are providing everyone interested with the opportunity to try her teas.Delete
Park Jong Il,s tea wares are equally superb. He has a style that is at once very functional, down to earth and whimsical. I love em!