64 Tasting Notes

Several sessions later, I now have a better sense of this tea. Flavor is aged fruity with characteristics of ordinary tea bag black tea. Easy to drink, with strong enough, very well rounded flavor that can be pushed quite far without going bitter. after several cups, I am left with a comfortable, warm, relaxed buzzing feeling that for me is a hallmark of good aged puer.
If I were to find something lacking in it, then I would state that It does not have a volatile aromatic (cogniac/cinnamon/vanilla/camphor,etc..) quality that for me is a sign of really excellent puer, Though its price is far less than teas that I have had with this quality.

This is a solid tea, easy to drink and brew. Definitely recommended. Well priced.
Its a chance to taste a reproduction of what is arguably the most famous puer recipe of all time, so it should certainly be near the top of the ‘must try once’ list of any puer fan.

mrmopar

Agreed this is pretty nice for the investment.

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sufficiently complex flavor and decently aged. has a herbal, almost fruity quality to it. no musty storage notes. has a hint of what might have once been a smokey flavor.

I am happy to have picked up a full beeng. Its quite different from 2004. actually I liked the (no longer in stock) 2004 better. It had what seem to be higher quality, plump leaves and more thickness, with a distinct prune aroma. but this one is more aged, mellow, easier on the stomach.

mrmopar

I love this one. It is on the way as I may have got the last one.

Asaf Mazar

by the way, the printed ticket inside the wrapper on the cake I got is a bit different from the picture. The last row is not ‘menghai tea factory’, but cnncp instead. I wonder if all of these cakes are the same. http://www.finepuer.com/files/images/chinese-tea-(green-tea-or-green-puer-tea)-2003-menghai-wild-arbor-red-mark-discus-tea-cake-6.jpg

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just did two final sessions with the remaining leaf.
first session was not remarkable.
one the second session, I brewed probably 4g intact chunk for approx 40 secs each time.
this longer infusion made a huge difference and I got really nice 1st and 2nd infusions with ethereal vanilla like qualities in there.

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After rinse there is a somewhat pleasant aged aroma. there are some hints of rubber in there.
I found some decent aged notes in some of the brews, though by and large, its not something that I feel like drinking much of, and has this cooked artichoke water somewhat bitter flavor that is not too exiting. Maybe its my (filtered) tap water, who knows.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec
JC

Nah, sounds about right. I was hoping for a bit more sweetness out of this one when I tried it. Try giving it a good rinse and letting it rest for a longer time. I did this a followed by brewing with water at 200-205 and ti was a bit better. Not great though. Cheers!

Asaf Mazar

JC, Its always fin to compare notes. I will try it with a longer rinse and rest.

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brewed probably 5-6 grams in Gawain.
It was much better this time.
During first several infusions leaves have a nice aged aroma of wet earth and raisins, with a faint hint of camphorous complex aged puerh aroma and much much less storage smell than before.

First few brews did have a bit of of that eukalyptus/camphor that boychich mentioned.
The tea is thick, almost coffee like, which is nice though its also somewhat muddy/murky.

From the three recently sampled aged shengs, this would take second place, after the yong ping hao. Both have some notable qualities, but I would rather pay more for a sheng with stronger, more obvious flavor and aroma, and with notable enhancement of well being and state of mind.

This morning I transferred the samples to small mugs with puer-paper & rubber band seals at the top. Will see how they fare in a couple of weeks or months.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec
boychik

Glad it was better this time. it’s sold out anyway. I do really like 2008 version.

Asaf Mazar

Seems like both 2005 and 2008 are out of stock now. there is 2012 for $35.

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Brewed in my roasted oolong $15 yixing pot from jk tea shop.
Coworkers loved it. they said it might even be their favorite so far.
It lasted for a good number of infusions.

Preparation
5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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This time I brewed it in a gaiwan using long steep times, at night in a relaxed setting.
It does have a classic complex aged puer flavor, though you have to pay fairly close attention to notice it.
The aroma of the rinsed leaves had a deep, rich and fairly pleasant but not amazing aged aroma during the first 2-3 steeps.
This tea is much more aged tasting than just about any post- 2000 sheng that I have tried. There is a sense that the leaf material itself is of high quality, and that it was somehow dulled down and muted, overly mellowed during storage. That is just my uneducated guess.
There were some mild cooling sensations primarily in the throat, and some coating on the tongue as well.

Compared to more expensive late 90’s shengs that I have tried , this one has no significant storage smell, and while its flavor is perhaps equally interesting and complex, its faint and a bit hidden underneath a mild primary flavor somewhat akin to composted wet wood.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 30 sec 3 g 2 OZ / 50 ML
Cwyn

I think I have the 2002 but I haven’t tried it yet.

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Rinsed leaves smell fantastic. Deep creamy Vanilla orchid aroma, and a hint of ‘cookies and cream’ of all things.
Taste is vegetal-orchid.
Nice dark large leaves take a while to expand.

Flavors: Orchid, Vegetal

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 15 sec 3 g 60 OZ / 1774 ML

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Dry leaf smells dusty and musty, a bit like mold spores actually. Since its from a reputable site I am not worried about sampling it.

I rinsed twice. All the infusions are dominated by a strong storage flavor. The brew itself is a bit sweet, faintly aged-fruity and lacking vitality.

Well, 3 out of 3 semi-aged sheng samples that I ordered are all rather disappointing to be honest. I see good review here so perhaps I am doing something wrong. Again, lets see what happens after they breathe for a few months.

Flavors: Musty

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 4 g 90 OZ / 2661 ML
boychik

it was first wet stored for me but i liked it. maybe because i live in a very humid climate. Couple days ago i tried 2008 wild tree Ye Sheng cha. nothing like this one. bright yellow soup, not bitter at all. sweet. highly recommended. available fr Mandala Tea

Charles Thomas Draper

I always enjoy your honest reviews.

Asaf Mazar

Thanks Charles. Its challenging to be accurate when rating a tea, especially aged puer. So many factors seem to influence the experience. This is why I have put aside numeric ratings for now. Perhaps its best to assign a score to a tea only after about 4-5 sessions with it.

Asaf Mazar

boychick, I am hoping to get some of that menthol that you mentioned. Its one of my favorites qualities in puer. Fortunately you left precise notes.I will try again using the same parameters.

mrmopar

I agree on lettung the tea “breathe” also. Since shipping can be slow and it is sealed most of the time I allow it to "acclimate’ to my environment.

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Dry leaf aroma has fruity tangy notes. After rinse the aroma is not that pleasant, perhaps a bit like aged rubber but not quite. The tea itself has a dulled-out aged barely fruity taste with some storage notes. Not much vitality in this one.
Perhaps it needs to acclimate for a few months.

After my experience with the ‘ancient spirit’ cake from YS, which seemed dull wen I first received it and is now an excellent tea, I can’t really judge a tea from an initial tasting right out of the sample bag.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 4 g 80 OZ / 2365 ML

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“Drink your tea slowly and reverently, as if it is the axis on which the world earth revolves – slowly, evenly, without rushing toward the future.” ~ Thích Nhất Hạnh

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