30 Tasting Notes
I instantly fell for this pu’er when I smelled its baker’s chocolate depth, richness, and allure. Where many cakes usually need some airing out to let some of the “duiwei” to dissipate, this one didn’t seem to have much of any at all or that which it did have only blended nicely with its overall medley of aromas. The first sampling of the cake was good enough – See more at: http://universotea.com/content/2012-chengshan-golden-peacock?ovr=1#sthash.FdV57MeJ.dpuf
Flavors: Baked Bread, Cocoa
2006 Bulang, Tiandiren Teavivre
I mentioned a couple weeks back that I had this after someone mentioned having it. I noted that it tasted horrible. I was flash steeping at 195 and it tasted like cigarette water. Yeah, I’m from Iowa and I went through my tobacco chewing days like everyone else. The worst “chew,” as it’s called, imho, is the sawdust stuff that comes in a hockey-puck called Copenhagen. This all to say that brewed at that temp, this Bulang conjured memories of Iowa and I was only too eager for the right time to try again at my normal raw tea temp of 175. Big, big, big difference. Positive. Much sweeter, a hint of sour. The cigarette, not necessarily tobacco but yes, taste lingers in the background, not unpleasantly.
Orange peel, sandalwood, must, must, must, bitter, dry, orange peel.
Wet-stored treasure that is dry through and through. Very potent cha-qi, all head and not heat. Astringency, after all these years. Paul Simon would be please. Added time with each infusion.
Characteristically gorgeous brew colour: limpid, inviting, brassy red. Lingering taste of orange peel’s bitterness.
Tastes like a grown-up’s tea. Thanks for the sample JC.
Curiously, I had read about this tea last week, when my tea amigo showed up with a sample of this for our monthly Bamboo and Loquat tea session through Meet-up. I flash steeped this puppy up with water at 195. Just as the article I read noted, it smells like cigarettes, contrary to what the author noted, through several infusions, it tasted like cigarettes as well. Not smoky, but astringent, slightly sour and acrid. This tea delivers a wicked cha-qi and my tea amigo noted that this might be a good one for folks who are trying to kick the habit, but neither of us found it terribly enjoyable or tasty after four infusions.
I’d recommend this for folks who want a long lingering buzz, much longer than a cigarette and long for that cigarette taste… if that what it can be called.
2011 Dashu Bulang White2Tea— Nothing short of very tasty. I see that it is no longer on the site but the 2013 is there. It’s a serious price performer. I found it to be sweeter than bitter, but with hints of smoke and a bitterness that builds. This was another sample from JC. Highly drinkable in oppressive heat, refreshing, what a Bulang should be.
Flash steeped. I’ve been experimenting with 195 degree water and flash steepings of around five seconds with good success. This one works well that way, no overwhelming bitterness and little astringency, a kind of slickness is evident as with other highly alkaline teas. Not as bitter as I would expect a Lao Man E tea to be.
Flavors: Bitter, Fruity, Smoke, Sweet
This is part of a revolutionary series that I suppose I’m gathering. Though the description says that it is dry-stored, that is most certainly NOT the case. This cake was received on April of 2014. Upon sampling, I was duly unimpressed. First, it just didn’t taste very good and second the lingering haunt of must made me feel like the cake had been stored in someone’s dank basement. Whatever questions the cake posed diminished, as the moldy taste only seemed to emerge more forcefully and there was much astringency to boot. – See more at: http://universotea.com/content/dragon-phoenix-tea-company-great-village-old-teashop-%C2%A02011#sthash.GrZfelNe.dpuf
Flavors: Butter, Metallic, Mint, Musty, Sweet
This last Sunday an amigo brought by the Bamboo Fragrance offering from the Phoenix Collection, the ripe variety from ’03. It is very tasty and remarkably beautiful, clear and sparkly. Full-on funk factor, umame, and quite warming. Good cha-qi.
I was given very quick infusions, fewer than five seconds. Very sweet. The mustiness of wet storage melds very nicely. Ironically, it still tastes quite clean. Nice tea especially for the funk-meisters.
Flavors: Earth, Peas, Sweet, Umami
This cake has a deeply satisfying quality about it. I can see it becoming a favourite among those who like a rich-tasting pu’er with lots of sweetness, without the off-tastes. Sometimes, it takes a while for a ripe cake to air out before being ready for consumption. This is hardly the case with this 1938, though just to be on the safe side, you may want – See more at: http://universotea.com/content/2005-cnnp-lucky-brand-1938-prime-grade?ovr=1#sthash.BDTd6KB0.dpuf
I’ve noticed a tendency for the communist party themed teas to get overlooked. Serve the People was a slogan popular during the Cultural Revolution. People who went through this tumultuous period would be in their late 50s-70s now. This brick is part of the Cultural Revolution kitsch or nostalgia that began in the early 90s and has remained popular in China to this day. It is accented by Chairman Mao’s calligraphy front and back.
Enough background. http://universotea.com/content/2006-cnnp-serve-people-one-has-lot-cha-qi-and-clear-liquor-boot%C2%A0-no-errant-tastes-and
Flavors: Earth, Musty, Sweet