Iron Goddess of Mercy – Tieguanyin
This is a lightly oxidized tea from China’s Fujian province. It has a fresh taste with floral overtones and can quench your thirst and charge you with the positive energy of the sun-bathed valleys of southern China.
Why we like it?
Tea and Zen philosophy have gone hand in hand for many centuries. Making this tea is supposed to invoke the teachings of Buddha. It’s a perfect choice for quiet contemplation. A good way to enjoy this tea is to use a gaiwan or a complete tea set and brew it properly multiple times. Each new brew will have a slightly different flavor. Following these changes is a big part of the tieguanyin experience. It is believed that the last drops of tea in the gaiwan are the most precious because they contain most of the tea’s essence. So, remember to share the last drops of this divine beverage with all your guests. Tieguanyin is one of China’s finest and most famous teas. It’s a must-have for serious tea drinkers. Teaspotting always offers the freshest tieguanyin available at the markets.
Roman’s personal score: 90/100
Miha’s personal score: 88/100
The scores above represent how the Daoli co-founders Miha and Roman feel about each particular tea. The ratings are given on 0 to 100 scale and are absolutely subjective. We simply translate into numbers our first impression about this tea.
According to a legend the Chinese name of comes from the statue of the Goddess of Mercy that one day appeared in a poor farmer’s dream and show him the place where a tea tree grew that eventually turned the farmer and the whole village very rich.
General steeping suggestions
Tea can be steeped in a tea pot, gaiwan, or a strainer placed right in your cup. Feel free to experiment with time, temperature, and quantity. If tea feels a bit strong or bitter, just use less leaves or steep it for a shorter period of time.
The purpose of the first brew is to rinse the leaves, so it shouldn’t last more than five seconds and should be discarded. Pour the hot water again. This time, steep it for longer periods. Avoid leaving the leaves soaking in water between brews, because it makes tea taste bitter and steals a lot of its flavor. If used properly, about six grams of tea leaves can yield several middle-size cups of excellent tea.
Chinese people enjoy the original taste of tea, so they never use milk, sugar, or lemon.
Steeping suggestion for Tieguanyin
Start with this, then experiment:
- one serving: 6 grams (0.2 lb)
- water: ~ 90 °C, 100-250 ml (194 F, 3-9 oz)
- time: 30-60 seconds
- number of infusions: 6-7 times
- discard the first brew
Tieguanyin is a delicate tea, so try not to use boiling water. Half a minute steeping time for the first 3-4 brews. Increase gradually to maintain the desired level of strength.
Have you tried this tea? Do you have any comments? Please use the space below to share your thoughts and ask us questions.