The first day of winter is only three days away, and since winter is coming, so is the cold. Where I live the weekend is supposed to get freezing cold, and with temperatures below 32ºf and a chance of rain, so you could say that it may freeze over this coming weekend. So what does all of this mean for me? For starters, I’ll be complaining about something that I cant change. However, there is something I can change as far as my weekend goes. In my forecast, I predict that there will be 100% chance of a session with Bitter Leaf Tea’s Ice Queen. This is a nine year old Bing Dao sheng puer that will definitely be drank by me, but will this cold named hot tea be enjoyed by you in this freezing weather? Here’s what to expect when Ice Queen comes into your forecast…
Steeps 1 - 4
First, before I started my session, I took a deep breath of this tea and noted that it smelled brilliantly of sweet sugary green grapes. I started to chill out with ice queen by giving 6.5g of this tea a quick rinse. Before sliding into my session, I took a deep breath of this teas wet leaf and noticed that it smelled of a deep sour Concord grapes. Now with that out of the way, I went to dethaw my lips.
At first, this tea had so much going on that I had to slow down my sled and pay closer attention to what was in my cup, but After a few more steeps, I was able to dethaw the frost that was sleeting over my vision of this tea. Ice Queen hit the front of my tongue with the sweet taste of sugary dates, and left the front of the tongue with a cooling sensation. It then glided its way the back of my throat and reminded me of a roasted honey - an amber like consistency that felt like a bourbon infused syrup. To top everything off, it left my tongue was coated in a deep-green oil that warmed every tastebud in my body.
Steeps 5 - 8
I continued to snow-plow on to my fifth infusion, which surprised me because the oil coating that I noted earlier sharply dropped off and was no longer noticeable. Fortunately, the tasting notes of dates transformed into the tasting notes of a biting aged barrel of whisky. Although this tea was still full bodied, the remanence of roasted honey became more raw, and the syrupy mouth feel was dissipating all together. On the bright side, I could now feel this tea in my chest and it was making me feel like I was melting by a fireplace.
Steeps 9 - 12
Just when I was expecting this sleigh ride to glide blissfully down a snow-capped mountain, it dove right off the cliff and plummeted into a pit of deeply roasted pile of sencha. My the ninth infusion, almost all of the boisterous aspects of this tea were completely gone, and the only thing left was a biting green tea with the aftertaste of honey. In other words, the Polar Express laid down its tracks and by the twelfth infusion, made its way to the North Pole - leaving everything else behind.
Ice Queen started out phenomenal, mainly because it hits your tongue like a sheet of acid. Then suddenly, it mellows out into something that is pleasant all its own, but not nearly as superior as its beginning steeps. Although this tea’s later steeps were incomparable to its golden start, it was saved by its internal warmth that made you feel like you were wrapped in a blanket by the fireplace. To add, I was thoroughly impressed by the fact that this is a nine year old Bing Dao, mainly because of how clean and well preserved is it. To add, this tea didn't possess any musky basement notes nor was it dusty. Whoever had this tea clearly took great care of it.
Overall, I think that Ice Queen was a great experience because not only did I get to drink something so euphoric, I was enraptured by the way this tea made me feel which only left me wanting more. If you get the chance to experience its euphoria for a short period of time, its up to you to decide rather if Ice Queen will be in your weather forecast or not…