Menghai Tea Factory(obtained from mandala tea)

Recent Tasting Notes

last night session
last time i had this tea i probably didnt use enough. it was ok but nothing special.
this time i decided to increase the amount to 8g. it made a huge difference. this tea is rich smooth and creamy. i’m happy to have it in my cupboard.

http://instagram.com/p/v0xkcChwm9/

http://instagram.com/p/v014KRhwg-/

http://instagram.com/p/v02Ay7hwh3/

http://instagram.com/p/v02Lsjhwiz/

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 8 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
jschergen

That’s a favorite of mine. I think its a clear cut above most of the rest of Menghai’s ripes.

I have maybe one more session with my mini-cake. Wishing I stocked up more!

Red Fennekin

The photos are amazing! The liquor in the final shot looks divine… :D

boychik

thank you Red Fennekin. the brew is thick strong and creamy. i dont think its very caffeinated. i had 4 steeps around midnight and fell asleep immediately ;)

TeaBrat

this is a winner….

jschergen

Thanks! Is that where you bought it from?

It may just be the cynic in me, but their price is beneath the Chinese market which has left me concerned about it being a potential fake. I’d feel a lot more confident knowing someone has gotten the tea and it was pretty alright.

Cheers!

boychik

i bought it at Mandala. but i placed couple orders with them. its not fake what i received. You can ask mrmopar and Dignitea. they ordered fr them as well. Look at Tuocha Tea, their prices are low too
i got fr Angelina’s 2006 Haiwan * Peacock Quest * Ripe
2008 Menghai “Hong Yun” Ripe Pu-erh Mini and something else i dont remember. All authentic

TeaBrat

Mandala doesn’t carry these anymore but I definitely trust them, don’t know much about Angelina’s tea however. I got my 2009 from Jas-e tea but they’re also out.

DigniTea

James – I have purchased several things from Angelinas and I have been happy with each one. I picked up one of these Zi Yuns but it is my second so I’ve not yet tried it. Today I am enjoying a 2005 6FTM MengSong purchased at Angelinas last year. It’s a good one.

TeaBrat

@DigniTea – great, now I want one :P

Terri HarpLady

I almost drank this one today :)

boychik

Terri, the day is not over yet. You can still make it cause its awesome! Unless you have other plans ;)

mrmopar

The “Dayi Hong” is good and similar to this.

jschergen

@DigniTea @boychick Thanks for the notes on Angelinas! At less than $10, the risk is certainly not enormous.

Rich

Indeed, I have been looking for this for a while. If it is the real deal I will definitely stock up! If anyone can verify that Angelina’s is carrying this same cake, it would be very much appreciated!

Rich

Oh, I see, Angelina’s has the 2008 version, not 2009. I am wondering how they compare.

boychik

Rich, I got one 2008 Dayi Hong fr Mandala and one fr Angelina. They are absolutely the same.

Rich

Oh, thanks for checking! So the wrapper from the Angelina’s cake says 2009?

boychik

I misunderstood you Rich. I bought this tea fr Mandala. I also bought 2008 Red Rhyme fr Mandala and 2008 Red Rhyme fr Angelina. Those cakes are the same. But last night I ordered Zi Yun fr Angelinas. Hopefully next week I will tell you if they are the same. They ship pretty fast.

mrmopar

I think the one from Angelina’s is actually from 2009. It looks legit though.

boychik

Ok. Got it. Very impressed. Placed an order on Wed , got it Sat . Don’t forget that it was Thanksgiving week. It is 2008. Looks exactly like 2009. Box, menghai sticker. Looks good to me.

TeaBrat

that is so funny, I ended up ordering one too. Just have to go to the post office to pick it up next week. :))

boychik

Sorry for being enabler, TeaBrat ;)

awilsondc

Based on this thread I placed an order with Angelina’s to get that Zi Yun. It is legit, and tastes just like the one I got from Mandala. However… I bought an Adorned in Red cake and a couple loose leaf teas that were HORRIBLE! Tastes like they were stored in a fragrant environment and the odors soaked into the tea making it pretty much undrinkable. I might be able to air it out over a couple months and save it, but I was not pleased. The Zi Yun comes in a box in addition to the wrapper which may have saved it from succumbing to the same fate as the open cake and loose leaf tea. Buyer beware.

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This classic Menghai Dayi blend is a lighter fermentation shou and considered a standard setter. It does a good job of delivering on the typical characteristics of the well known Dayi factory shous – blend of larger and smaller leaves and pieces, dark reddish brown tea soup, appealing smooth and mellow sip with rich flavor, woody sweet aftertaste, good durability for resteeps. Already six years of aging but it has the strength of character to continue to improve with age.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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This is probably the oldest puerh I’ve tried so far. It had such great reviews and was very affordable, so I picked up a cake in my last order. It comes beautifully packaged…almost didn’t want to break the seal and keep it that way like my husband likes to do with some of his collectors items. I used to think that was ridiculous, but I can see it now (don’t tell him!). ;)

I had a really rough time picking pieces off this cake to brew….and yes, there was blood, from my little pinky! I also ripped the nice paper! Nooo! Note to self: get a puerh breaking tray.

This brews up super dark. The minute I poured water over the leaves I got this hit of sweet raisin in the aroma! Ooooh!

The taste is smooth and dark and the sweet raisin/date notes come in at the end of the sip in the aftertaste. Yum!

Definitely more dominant sweetness of raisin and dates in the 5th steep. So good. Very glad to have this in my cupboard, but I’m a little scared for my next cake breaking session!

boychik

Do you have a pu pick? I have a pu knife and pu pick and sometimes I need to use both when its very tightly compressed. Pls be careful. I once stubbed myself with steak knife. After that I got a pick. Yea tray helps too

Tealizzy

No, I’ve been using a cheese pick thing. I have a proper pick on my wishlist. Oh, and a tray! ;)

mrmopar

Yah this is a good shou.

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84

another day….another puerh. :) This one comes from Boychik I chose this one to drink today, while i putter around the house getting ready for this afternoon’s meet up. Bonny is visiting here so a few of us are getting together this afternoon to hang out. :)

So far this has been a really smooth journey. This isn’t BOLD, in your face sort of puerh…it’s a mellow, soothing, relaxing sort of drink. more to come likely once i get home.

boychik

glad you liked it. have fun!

Sil

i’m just glad i’ve had a chance to actually drink the rest of the samples you sent me without feeling rushed heh. Still thinking about the cake from yesterday… noms.

boychik

I had a sample today which blew my mind. The color and clarity, and flavors like baking spices. It’s 2007 GuMingXiang Nannuo
http://instagram.com/p/uoLO7qBwvj/
The samples of pu ppl sharing w/me are too good. I want them all. Hubby tested this Nannuo and said good. Let me tell you man till recently was saying tea is a tea. Give me some sugar!

mrmopar

Tell Bonnie we have missed her on here..

Sil

heh realised i typed bonnIE when i meant BonnY…aka vacounver bonny not to be confused with colorado bonnie. eep! so confusing. we had a great time though. Kitenna; Indigobloom; myself and Bonny all managed to meet up. Cavo and VariaTEA coulldn’t make it unfortunately :(

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Delicious shou! Completely funk-free with some nice raisin notes. Very nice stuff :)

Cheri

funk free is always important

Starfevre

don’t you want to get down in funkytown?

Stephanie

lol…I enjoy funkytown just not in my shou! ;)

mrmopar

They tend to lose the “funk” as they age. Some producers "hold"their tea to market to allow some of this to dissipate. This is a really nice one.

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88

Yummy yummy. Menghai makes some good tea.

I tell you what, I think this might be the best Shou I’ve tasted so far. There’s different kind of Shou for different kind of folks.

For me, this is what I like. No funkiness, very little wood, slight hit of sweetness, smooth and creamy.

Wet leaves are just like freshly polished shoe leather. You get a little bit of that in the flavor. Cake is real tight but I got off a nice couple chunks with a knife.

This is all good and a quality product from Mandala.

Flavors: Creamy, Leather, Raisins

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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93

YUM! boychik has sent me some of the best shus!

This one is smooth and SWEET. It is lightly earthy and has a dark fruity note floating around. I did a long-ish steep and I’m really enjoying the bold flavor :)

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Thanks to mrmopar for this sample. It’s a mellow and woody tea with a hint of cinnamon. The liquor is rich and dark, like coffee. There is some earthiness there, and no off flavours at all. I would say that this is a very comfortable tea to drink, and I have been very comfortable drinking it since yesterday.

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I believe Bonnie wrote the definitive tasting note on this one two years ago. As I was writing my own review for my blog I kept noticing how nearly identical my experience was to hers – minus the sexy dating analogy (wow, hot stuff). For me this was a necessary session to overcome yesterday’s over indulgences. Way over did it. This one helped calm the stomach and left me with a pleasant calming peace that was remarkable spiritual like. I have never thought to actually use puerh in my private devotion time but maybe I will give it a go one day soon. Anyway, starts mellow with mineral, cedar, and horse tack notes. Blossoms later with bold flavors of browned cedar and horse tack. Then drifts back into more mellow but pronounced mineral and cedar, and ending with pleasant leather notes. Excellent cha qi.

TheTeaFairy

Inspirational.

mrmopar

Yum Yum!

gmathis

1 Timothy 6:17 …. the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy. Pu-erh counts!

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i enjoyed this tea for 2 days.
100ml gaiwan 5g 212F
Rinse, rest, 5/5/10/10/15/15/20/20/ etc
Wet leaves smell of prunes and apricots. this tea is very clean, burgundy clear, no off taste . It is sweet with some spice notes,maybe like cinnamon. had a tingling sensation. Also this tea is very creamy. call me crazy but i can compare all those notes to plum pudding.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Stephanie

Sounds wonderful :)

DeliriumsFrogs

Did you say Plum Pudding!? Yum! This sounds absolutely fantastic!

boychik

i think i’ll buy the whole cake.

DeliriumsFrogs

Yeah, this is definitely going on my ‘wish list’… I’m just staring at it on the site right now. lol

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88

I’ve been working on this one all day – most enjoyable with good flavor in every cup. Boiling water; (2) 5 second rinses; 30s steep; another 10 seconds added for each steep after the first. Earthy then buttery then creamy. I’m going to order another cake so that I can keep this around for a long time.

mrmopar

Oh yes this is a good one!

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93

This is my first tea picked by my homemade randomizer. It was one of the ones I was hoping to squirrel but the randomizer picked it and I am a slave to the system. I also didn’t take detailed notes about each steep because I am lazy.

I absolutely loved this tea based completely on the superficial. It’s adorable. It’s so tiny and pretty and the box is purple. The look of it made me happy. Brewed, it’s just magnificent. So sweet and creamy. There are times when I sip this tea and it’s just notes of caramelized dates with that smooth creaminess and it was just perfect. Pure perfection. This is one of the smoothest ripe pu’ers I have ever tried.

I don’t think this will be an everyday tea. Not because I don’t love it to bits and pieces but I want it to last. I am tempted in a big way to buy another one of these and a Red Rhyme.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec
Terri HarpLady

I need to pull this one out, it’s been awhile since I drank it!

mrmopar

This is a good one! Had this myself a while back.

MsWhatsit

I’m a sucker for pretty tea boxes. Glad to hear the tea in it is good too.

mrmopar

Yep the tea is superb in this pretty little box. The have one called “Red Rhyme” that is superb also!

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81

I am digging this one. I’ve been drinking steeps of this over the morning in an effort to hold to my goal of getting through the samples that terri sent me of a variety of puerhs! Initial impressions, so that i don’t lose that is that this is a very creamy puerh. I’m going to toss the leaves to cold brew once i’m done with them just to see how that works but overall impressions of this so far is that this is just delicious!

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Finishing off my sample of this, swiped from the Here’s Hoping teabox!

Man, being sick sucks, but my yixing pot is loving it! I’ve been steeping pu’er for like 3 days and the pot isn’t flavor sucking now. My yixing pot is having a grand time spending time with me, with the other pots getting all jealous.

Man, this is good, I could buy more of this pu’er. Maybe next Mandala order!

Oh man, this is good!

I snagged this tea out of the Here’s Hoping Teabox. This pu’er is really mellow with a sweet cedar taste end of sip. There is a lingering aftertaste of earthy that is really good. No fermentation taste, not mushroomy or smokey. I could be convinced to buy a cake of this, crap, and I just did a Mandala order too. Oh well, next order then.

My husband (he doesn’t like tea) said this one tastes like overly strong chinese restaurant tea. LOL

mrmopar

I just started on a brewing of this Friday and on a cup now. Is there a government conspiracy or something I need to know about? LOL!

mrmopar

The 2010 version of this tea got me started into puerh.

Awkward Soul / Oolong Owl

I’m still working on this pu’er, it just keeps going with just slight changes to flavor. Yeah, for my first shu cake I was eyeing all Menghais – this one, the purple rhyme and a yellow 100g one, and I ended up with the yellow one, kinda wish I got all 3 lol! (I still need to try the yellow one)

Terri HarpLady

I’ve been eyeing the 3 pack… And the patty cake II … And….

mrmopar

Menghai is pretty good tea. They take a lot of steps to insure their product is not “forged”. If you need any tips or help hit me up I have a small puerh stock and may be able to direct you to some good ones.

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100 Grams is really not a very big tea cake, however at 5 G per session, it will make tea 20 times, & of course each session will make many cups of tea to savor. I weighed it, & it actually weighed in at 92G, but my guess is that it was originally 100, & lost weight as it aged.

I started with a rinse, which admittedly, I drank, savoring the gentle essence of semolina & vanilla cake. The wet leaves smell of Kugle. What’s Kugle? It’s a dish made with buttery noodles & custard, which can be made either sweet or savory. I used to make it for my kids when they were young, everyone loved it so. In this case, I’m thinking of the sweet kind, with vanilla.
Here’s my impression of the steepings:
1. 10 sec: It’s so creamy & sweet, & it’s Kugle!
2. 15 sec: Even creamier & sweeter!
3 – 5 at 20, 25, & 30 sec were combined into a pitcher, to enjoy while I was teaching a student, & the flavors continued.
6. 45 sec: the butteriness is replaced by a golden sensation, as if my tongue were covered in a sleeve of pure thin gold. I know that sounds weird, but it’s the only way I can describe it. Still sweet.
7. 1 minute: It feels like I’m drinking cream. The flavor is of a brown crust of WW bread.

I had to leave for awhile, but when I got home, I ran through several more steepings, & could probably continue, but I have somewhere to be, so maybe tomorrow? This is a very nice tea!
7.

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I have mentioned that my youngest daughter has become obsessed with cooking. I feel so spoiled! And she asks to drink puerh with me often now. This has led to a slight problem in supply. I am on my last cake of Mandala Tea ripe puerh. I do have a little loose puerh, and I have two flavored ones, and I have two green or sheng puerh remaining. Still….this is LOW SUPPLY! ALARM! ALARM!

Hubby was in den, so I shouted from the living room that puerh makes a great anniversary gift. He asked me where this great gift would come from, and I told him not to worry, I would order it myself! Am I a low maintenance wife or what? I will even open it before I wrap it and make sure it is good! :D

As to taste: I used about a teaspoon, maybe a bit more, in my tiny eight ounce pot. We had a liter glass kettle of water. The flavor lasted for steep after steep. It was earthy and warm.
Youngest remarked that she particularly enjoyed this session. I think that is a pretty good recommendation.

mrmopar

I know where you can get this if Garrett is out of stock on it. He would be the first choice and if not message me and I will hook you up. P.S. ain’t it great when the kids and grand-kids like our tea! :)

ashmanra

Mrmopar, it warms the cockles of my heart that my kids are all drinking tea now! And two of them are drinking a LOT of it, and my eldest daughter married a fellow from Ireland and naturally he drinks lots of tea! Bliss!

mrmopar

Agreed on the warming of the heart! :)

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Drumroll, please! There is another puerh convert in my house! Hooray!!!!!!

My youngest daughter has become obsessed, obsessed I say!, with cooking and with trying new things. What a wonderful time when kids hit that ultra adventurous stage. Up to now her favorite teas were Vanilla Black by Harney, any Lapsang but especially Black Dragon from Upton, Baker Street Afternoon Blend from Upton, and Yunnan Golden Tips.

A couple of months ago she cut back on sugar in her tea and finally weaned herself off of it entirely. Then she started cooking and was wanting to try lots of new foods. She discovered that she liked nearly everything she tried. She started trying new teas, and re-tasting ones that she had not cared for long ago.

I nearly fell over last week when I made puerh at my son’s request last week and she asked if there was enough for her, too. Then twice this week she has asked if the two of us could share a pot together.

Today’s choice was Purple Rhyme. I made it western style in my 22 ounce pot and poured it into a larger pot. I used boiling water and steeped for about four minutes, until it was almost inky black! I made a second steep right away which is as dark as the first and combined them. There was no rinse.

This is so good, very smooth and full bodied. This is earthy with a high tang. We drank about 35 ounces of it today. I saved the leaves and expect to get at least another two western steeps out of it tomorrow. I am so happy to have another puerh drinker in the house.

Ubacat

Tea tastes even better when you share.

mrmopar

Yay! And a good one to share.

Sarsonator

This is awesome! I admit I’m a little jealous! My boyfriend enjoys tea, but he’s pretty meh about the pu’erhs. LOL

ashmanra

Mrmopar: I can thank you that we had this good tea to share. You helped me pick my Christmas gifts from hubby and this was one of them!

We are drinking this again today, this time with my eldest daughter.

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I want to thank Bonnie over and over again for saying she puts her puerh leaves in the fridge to cold steep after she has had some hot steeps of it. I did that two days ago and just let it sit in a big pitcher. I am finally drinking it today and I have to say it is one of the most refreshing things you could possibly imagine.

I posted a link to the recipe for Ent Draught last week, but to me, THIS is what Ent Draught would taste like. It is so perfectly light, refreshing, and clean, clean, clean, while at the same time tasting of purest earth. I think I could actually gulp down the whole pitcher in a very short time, and it is so cooling and uplifting. There is not even a tad of sugar in it. It doesn’t need it.

Ent Draught is supposed to be clear, thus the distilling process, but this is the taste it should have! The color of the cold brew puerh is gorgeous – so orange and clear. It looks like really good Southern sweet tea. I would much rather have this, though.

I am almost looking forward to our sticky summer weather just so I can drink gallons of this!

Bonnie

Someone actually did this! When I made the note I doubted that anyone would make it. (Being a puer after all) I live in a very arid zone at 5000 ft. and hydration is important. The chilled puer IS refreshing and calms your stomach.

ashmanra

This isn’t the first time I have done it since I first saw it in one of your posts, but everytime I do this I think of you! It is the most refreshing thing I think I had ever had. It tastes like the purest water on earth, infused with the flavor of pristine earth and trees! I really want to try to make it as a clear Ent Draught sometime!

Terri HarpLady

I will be trying this soon!

Em

Sounds like something I’d be interested in trying. How long do you let the leaves steep?

Bonnie

For all my cupboard stash, what you don’t see is how frugal I am. My bins are salad containers, half my stash are samples from friends and trades. I don’t throw out tea leaves that still have goodness in them that can be used for cold brewing. My budget has been $15-$20 a month for tea and sometimes I’m down to nothing for months other than going for tea in town which is about $4 a week. It’s my only entertainment outside of TV, so I think people who complain about prices can have lots of tea for less probably if they plan for quality not just quantity. You should explain Ent Draught so others know what that means. We all learn from each other! Maybe when the weather gets warm, we can have a cold tea thread and share what we do!

Bonnie

Oh- I use that bottle top thing that the Tea Spot invented to filter the leaves. What do you use?

ashmanra

Em: I let this steep for two days so far, but I will keep it going in the refrigerator until I drink it all, even if that is a few more days. It was ready to drink probably six or eight hours after putting it in, since it had already been heated once, so the leaves were “open” and saturated and ready to give up their flavor! I also use a glass container because it conducts temp so well and the tea is so very cold.

Ent Draught was a drink described in The Lord of the Rings. The Ents were the ancient tree shepherds and looked like trees themselves. When the Hobbits drank the crystal clear draught, they grew instantly taller. There were two different times it as served to them, and each time it tasted different. I had posted a link to a site where someone had tried to create their own versions of Ent Draught using tea and herbs, but since it was described as being clear they distilled the tea on the stovetop! If I find the link again, I will post it here,

ashmanra

I found a couple of Bodum iced tea pitchers with filter in the lid at TJ Maxx a while back for a really good sale price! That is what I use for cold brewing.

ashmanra

http://foodthroughthepages.com/2012/12/18/ent-draught-the-lord-of-the-rings/
There it is! The description from the book as well as the recipe to imitate are here, but I really truly feel this is a description of white tea for the first, perhaps infused with flowers like jasmine or osmanthus, and jerk tea for the second drink that was given to them.

cryptickoi

cold shu is great…a little citrus(yuzu) in it is good too…

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I drank one steep of my Southern Season puerh and then put the leaves in the fridge to cold brew a pitcher of iced tea. I was feeling unsatisfied, puerh-wise, so I decided to treat myself to several steeps of Purple Rhyme.

I love the box it came in, the careful wrapping of the paper with such beautiful, uniform folds, the stamp that holds the paper tight. I love the care used to present this product to me.

The tea is really dark, because I love strong, smooth puerh and I let it steep longer than most people do. The taste is fresh and so clean.

Bonnie

Pour me a cup!

ashmanra

Come on over! Do you like to make cards and dance with the dog?

K S

Are you setting her up for a bad date?

ashmanra

Nope, for a good time! :D

Bonnie

I can think of a better time than dancing with the dog! I’ll take the tea and dance with K S! (Any other offers?!)

K S

Bonnie, if I could dance it would be my honor. Can we still have puerh?

gmathis

Cutting and gluing party at ashmanra’s house! I’ll start packing!

mrmopar

Ha, I am in for that one! This is a really good pu-erh I enjoy this one a lot.

ashmanra

Woo hoo! This is gonna be the most exciting weekend I have ever had!

mrmopar

Yes but with good pu-erh there will always be a crowd!

mrmopar

The heck with the cup! Can i have the whole pot?

ashmanra

LOL! Sure! We’ll make several pots! Look what you started, Garret.

Bonnie

Hey,if Garret’s coming he can bring another beeng! I’ll bring snacks!

Terri HarpLady

Ooooh, purple rhyme! Yum, I got me some a few weeks ago!
And I will dance with the dog!

ashmanra

At this rate, we’ll need another beeng! And Terriharplady: I will tell Mr. Samwise to practice his steps!

Bonnie

We really do need a steepster cruise or vacation event!

Terri HarpLady

We should plan our own Steepster convention… July anyone?

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