Results: The tenth cup was just as good as the first. Quintessential for floral fans; or anyone turned off by an overpowering jasmine – Yunnan Sourcing’s Hairy Crab is the tea you’ve been looking for.
Vendor: Yunnan Sourcing (use this link for $5 off orders of $50 or more)
Origin: Anxi County, Fujian Province, China
Tasting: 3 / 190°/ 75ml / R10-20-35-45-50-60-70-75-80
Gong-Go Gear: Tangpin Blue Mini Kyusu
Average number of infusions: 9
When I first ventured into the world of tea, my first love was Jasmine Pearls, then I found Anxi Oolongs. While I’ve long since left scented teas behind (to overpowering for my palate these days) I’m a big fan of lightly oxidized oolongs. While almost everyone knows about Tie Guan Yin, fewer have heard of Hairy Crab (Mao Xie). The name alone doesn’t evoke a strong desire to try it but for fans of floral teas it is a must.
A product of Anxi County, this spectacular tea takes its name from the fine hairs seen on its leaves that float to the top of your cup. How that translates to crab is beyond me, but I have to admit its unforgettable. I haven’t had any in years and when I saw that Yunnan Sourcing was offering it, of course, I snatched some up. According to their website, this tea comes from the village of Gan De Village. I tried to find it on a map but as you can see I didn’t have any luck. Anxi though is famous for its oolongs and this particular tea is no exception.
While many teas take on different characteristics across infusions, I find Mao Xi to be pretty consistent right until the end. Lightly oxidized, the floral notes of orchids are perfectly presented and not overpowering right through about the 5th infusion. Around the sixth, a delicate sweetness comes forward and the floral notes move to the background. I’m having a hard time deciding which I like more. Sipping my 10th cup now I find myself loving it just as much as the first. For floral fans or anyone turned off by an overpowering Jasmine, Yunnan Sourcing Hairy Crab is the tea you’ve been looking for.
Distinct notes of roasted broccoli
Perfect green nuggets of goodness
Appealing delicate yellow-green
Succulent and lush
Gong-Go Rating Infusion 1 – 5:
Juicy good with notes of orchids and a buttery finish
Gong-Go Rating Infusion 6-10:
Lightly sweet with a delicate floral fish