Popular Teas from DoujiSee All 27 Teas
Recent Tasting Notes
The Douji DaDou produced in 2009 is a blend of very fine Menghai and Lincang leaf. The characteristics of the two areas blend wonderfully to produce a fantastic cup! The cake is composed of beautiful whole leaves throughout (i.e., not just on top) which are quite large. The tea liquor is a nice orange-yellow color – even after two rinses it was a tiny bit cloudy during the first 2-3 infusions. The scent is pleasant – fresh, fruity, sweet. The sip is quite smooth and mellow with a definite sweetness and there is a little boldness and strength (a thickness?) to balance the sip. Nice chaqi settles in after 10-12 swallows. Definitely a bit of appealing complexity in this one — a good quality offering and I am a fan for sure!
The Douji brand is considered a premium puerh – particularly their single-mountain cakes. Unfortunately these cakes have become extremely pricey in recent years. I have learned from a few individuals more knowledgeable about puerh than I that the best value in Douji products may now be their blends which also use high quality tea leaves. Of course these too have risen dramatically in price recently. However, if you keep searching you just might stumble upon a cake here or there in a tea seller’s inventory with a little age on it and an “older” price which makes it a bargain compared to the more recent Doujis. I’ve stumbled upon a few lately and I am very happy to have added them to my puerh collection.
All of my ratings are 88, luck be with you.
The dry leaves smell like white sugar. Very young, with scents of vegetal grass still present – probably due to being pressed only a month ago, and picked but a few months ago. That young smell can be put-offish, but in this case it is quite endearing.
The price of this tea is totally crazy by now, as the cakes of this tea are probably in the several hundred dollar range. (357g puer cakes) I just used up my last of this small sample and I have to say it is good tea. But, with a qualifier, that it is far too pricey. There are other outlets with better Ban Zhang tea, but for the main stream, Douji is great. Better than Chen Sheng Hao.
I can not make up my mind about Douji. Their teas are better than Menghai or Zhongcha or the other factories, but their prices are so high. Then, if you dip into their less expensive teas (see above) the quality is just ok.
This is good enough to drink, and it is a decent daily tea. Just as a point of reference for frequent steepster users, this tea is about 5 times better than anything offered by most American tea retailers, but if you compare it to all the other puer tea out there, it is just a hair above average.
I’ve drank this tea a fair amount lately and I have to stop and ask myself why. I think because this tea is kind of a throw away. It’s not bad, it’s not great and it was cheap. The maocha was obviously heavily cleaned and maybe processed a little stiffly. There’s an odd papery sensation to the whole tea and I think for now, I’ll stop drinking it and see what becomes of it in 10 years.
Thank you Jerry for sending me this amazing sample!
I could so get used to pu-erhs like this!! in fact, once I’ve finished the samples I would definitely consider buying some more. That will take a long long time mind you… since I have to finish all of what I have first!
The only thing that gives me pause so far… is that the steeped leaves smell like wet dog!! blegh. I don’t wanna know what wet dog tastes like…
Moving on! The first steep was very plain. Mellow, but very smooth and comforting. Not bold at all like the last pu-erh I reviewed. It had a natural cakey sweetness to it that lingers for a long time in the aftertaste. The cakeyness seems to be sort of clay-like, in a sort of distant mellow way. I feel as if I’ve just eaten a delicious angel food cake!
Oh and as it cools, there is a hint of astringency coming out. Odd, I think, for a pu-erh.
(I gave it a little rinse first btw! I only do this for fancy pu-erhs hehe)
The second steep is more of the same only a tad more cakey and as it cools a hint of fish. Definitely less cakey or sweet notes here. One of the other reviews mention spinach and I can see where they are getting that from in the finish though I never would have pinned it as such.
Oh wow, I let the cup cool even more and a different sweet note has emerged! or rather the same note, only right before the finish. and in the finish there is a bitter point that I’ve never experienced in a tea!!! it’s so mild that I am actually enjoying the bitter aspect. The bitter part of the aftertaste reminds me of brussel sprouts (only it tastes even more spinachy now, so picture a spinach sprout!). Oh and no more fishiness either, once it’s lukewarm.
I’ve done two or three more steeps after this (I always lose count!) and they’ve been pretty much the same as the first. I’m starting to get a bit of that raisiny flavour from the other pu-erh I reviewed last week, which isn’t really my thing!
Ah well. There are so many things to love about this one! It was never harsh, always smooth, and rather complex! Mmmm. I likey this one, alot!!!
Overall: This tea is not a typical Puerh tea in our opinion, we are accustomed to a much more earthy pungent tea. This tea is very gentle and gives out a faint sweet aroma. There is a hint of bitter on the tongue and it initially brings a floral flavor. We recommend a longer than shorter steep (approximately 9 minutes). 1st steep was the best in our opinion but keep in mind we are fans of earthy strong tea.
1st steep (one of two trials)- 9 minute steep 1.5 tsp/1 cup 96*C
-light color (coppery)
-aroma not-earthy, sweet
-after-taste is bitter and lasts a while
-initial-taste strong but disperses into a medley of flavors (algae very small hint of fish and floral )
-very good but not the Puerh that we are familiar with
1st steep (two of two trials)- 5 minute steep 1.5 tsp/1 cup 96*C
-light color (golden)
-light fresh smell (almost like green tea)
-initial taste, lightly bitter, disappears quickly
-slight almost floral after-taste
-does not taste like Puerh, however refreshing
2nd steep (two of two trials)- 15 minute steep 1.5 tsp/1 cup 96*C
-very little taste, slightly tart compared to bitter taste of first steep, more floral than first tea
-very faint after-taste (more of a gentile tea), reminiscence of what the first steep used to be
-same color as first five-minute tea (golden)
3rd steep (two of two trials)- 15 minute steep 1.5 tsp/1 cup 96*C
-very similar to the 2nd steep, lost much of it’s flavor.
The fifth and sadly last sample from Jerry. This is the most densely packed of the samples. Pulling enough tea off the cake took some effort. The dry leaf is dark and is the most shredded of all the samples. 2g of leaf and near boiling. 10s wash. 45s steep. The wet leaf is dark olive/brown and grassy as was the dry. The liquor in the cup is between a deep rich gold and a copper color.
The first cup is difficult to describe. It’s not overly earthy, grassy. It’s not fishy, bitter, or syrupy. The best I can do is say it is a comfortingly mellow and it makes the sides of my tongue tingle. The first cup is not as complex as most of the others, but I am ok with that on a Monday morning, as it is a warm and happy cup. Cup 2, the leaf was spinachy. The brew is still mellow, no tingle, slightly grassy, more complex, or maybe I am just awake now. 3rd cup very slight fishiness. 4th or 5th cup (lost track) developed a bit of a coppery taste. This is the first tea I have experienced the liquid feeling not syrup but thick. Will revisit this tomorrow with more steeps.
I am really excited that I wrote the above before reading any of the comments or descriptions of this tea. It tells me my tasting skills are progressing.
First steep: a bit earthily floral, if that makes sense. With a green factor.
Second steep: a Very roasted taste
Third steep: very earthy with slight fish to it
Fourth steep: a bit bitter with earthy finish
Fifth steep: eathiness is much lighter. a tiny bit astringent.
And so on.
This is a good pu-erh and much lighter than most I’ve had.