I purchased a sample of Golden Hunan via Harney and Sons, a tea from Hunan province, described as "long golden buds with tinges of black, shaped into a slow twist." The dry leaf has a very fresh scent to it, even in the small sample packet. It brews up to a mellow cup with spicy notes intermingled with toasty-grain and hint of honey. There's a hint of floral bud in that breath you draw in after swallowing. It's what I think of as the fresh scent a bud has just before it becomes fully floral once it opens.
Second trial of the Golden Hunan with two full teaspoons of life, 6 ounces water to boiling, 4 minutes: Very fragrant aroma, even deeper and more pervasive than my first cup above. The cup itself remains very mellow, too. It's a very likable and approachable tea--has a nice clarity to it, not muddy or heavy on the palate. I definitely find that I need to get at least the two teaspoons of leaf for the aroma and flavors to pull forward in this more decisive way.
Golden Luo is also from Hunan province. The leaf on this tea is shaped like little black and gold curls. This tea brews up comparatively darker in the cup, both as to color and depth. It is a bit less spicy than Golden Hunan. There is a sweetness to the aroma, but it is not as honeyed as Golden Hunan. Instead it almost seems to have a sweet-floral note wafting in and out. Rather than the toasty-grain emphasis in the cup, there is a darker thing going on in the cup that is related to that powdery dark cocoa taste. Even though it's darker in emphasis, the tea still has a freshness to its taste and something almost floral that meanders into the finish and aftertaste along with the hit of bitter cocoa. The floral isn't flamboyant. It is more like the delicate sweet-green note of one of those heather plants I've purchased from grocery stores. What lingers on the palate is a mix of the dark cocoa powder and a slight pungent hit that seems more green bud-floral.
And later: Using up the last of my purchased sample, I upped leaf amount on this one (two full tsp plus the smidgen left in the sample packet per 6 ounce cup, water to boiling) and shortened brewing time to three minutes. The almost floral note pulls forward even more against the dark cocoa depth. The aroma is even more pervasive today.