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Recent Tasting Notes
I’m going to keep this one short. The leaf is heavily compressed and carries a bbq briquette scent. The tone is brown sugar sweet with a smoky waft. I warmed the yixing and put em in. The scent was still smoky but sharper, more of a mesquite smoke. I washed the leaves twice and brewed away. This tea is decent. It reminds me of a well done soft zheng shan Xiao shong. The smoke is present, but it is not bitter or overwhelming. Rather, the smokiness is meaty and savory. The smoky profile comes in waves and the tea performs in a woody, smoky, black tea manner. The tea took forever to fully open up, and even after the whole session it was still pretty compressed in some spots. I didn’t find this incredibly complex or great, but it was interesting and cheap. This really is a smoky lee.
Flavors: Brown Sugar, Meat, Roasted, Smoke, Smoked, Wood
I don’t see much fresh BaDa, so I was excited to try this one out. The leaf is quite compressed and gives off a heavy bitter scent with some thick floral background. The hefty chunk is stone fruity and bright. I warmed up my gaiwan and placed a chunk inside. The tea is oddly fragrant, haha. The leaf opens up some and gives potent scents of peach and apricot alike gummy candy. The fruit aroma grows fat after washing and continues to explore the tea room while brewing. The taste begins bitey and fresh with lemon grass notes. A slight peppercorn taste peeks through the bright sunshineyness. The huigan builds hard and thick in the back of the throat with a sweet tang. The energy is very good and percolates my vessels. However, the tea is quite basic. The tones continue to be soft and slowly moving, but I sensed no extreme bitter, sweet, or unique tastes. The sheng is nice and grassy and becomes dry over time. This raw stuff is quite basic, but the qi is something nice. A nice bright summer energy. I enjoyed the tea, but I don’t think i’ll get a cake.
Flavors: Apricot, Bitter, Candy, Freshly Cut Grass, Grass, Peach, Pepper
This is a great example of fresh Naka. I received moacha, so the leaves were large and thin. they gave off a heavy aroma of powdered sugar, apricot, honey, light floral, and a background of caramel and cedar. This was a very sweet tea. I warmed up my gaiwan and pushed some leaves inside. The aroma opened up into a nice crisp sweet melon, some grass, oak, sunflower, and a bit of papaya. I washed the leaves once and quickly prepared for brewing. The session began sweet and smooth with a light anise after taste for spice. The spice was quickly soothed by a thick sweet melon flavor that lingered in the back of the throat. The tea progressed into some bitter grass tones with a hint of lemon. Then, the brew relaxes into some hearty greens and consistent grapefruit. I experienced an overdrive of power. The qi was crisp, swift, and penetrating. My tongue had gone numb a few sips ago, and my head was soaring with cool sensations and vibrating energy. I really enjoyed this tea. The flavors were spot on clean spring tastes, and the energy was perfect for a sunny day.
Flavors: Anise, Caramel, Floral, Grapefruit, Grass, Honey, Lemon, Melon, Powdered sugar, Sweet
This was an interesting tea.I am always intrigued by this company’s tea, so I decided to pick this one up for fun. The leaves are heavily compressed and a dark shiny green. They give off a strong aroma of prickly pear fruit, thick grass, aloe, radish, and some light floral tones. It was a welcoming aroma. I warmed up my pot and tossed some in. The scent opens into a familiar apricot, dry wood, and floral scent; however, I noted some palo verde and fig preserve in the background. I washed the leaves and went on to brewing. The taste is sweet and grassy; a thick arugula flavor greets me. Then, I can catch more dandelion and some light smoke. An intense cooling sensation flows across my tongue. The menthol feeling created a tingling sensation on my tongue and roof of my mouth. After a few steeps, I noticed some peppery kuwei and some astringency. The tea has a good character and a mild bite with soothing vegetal tones. The vegetal tastes develop into grapefruit, bright and soft fruits, and some perfume. They were a melody of interesting flavor. There is no huigan except for a similar buttery and light sugar tone present in the mouth. The brew continues in the same manner with kuwei of bitter greens and peppercorn. The qi consists of a nice head buzz with blurry eyes. A nice fruity tang persists in the throat. Then, all of a sudden, a surprise attack from the gushu. I entered complete space out mode with eye popping action. This is some beautiful stuff. The brew lasts quite a long time due to compression, and it was very good considering price. I liked it.
Flavors: Bitter, Floral, Grapefruit, Green, Nectar, Peppercorn, Smooth, Sweet, Vegetal
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This is a nice father’s day treat. More elegant than powerful, but a very complex flavor, with perfect balance between the nose, taste, and finish.
The first cup presented a spicy aroma (clove and black pepper ?). These flavors continued into the taste, which was mostly wood and straw. Second steep was more of the same, but with a bit of apricot replacing some of the spice, which reappeared more strongly in the finish. By the end of the second cup (3+2 oz) I was really feeling the cha qi as a whole-body effect. Very pleasant. 3rd steep turns slightly bitter, hiding much of the fruit and spice, which reappears as the tea cools. VERY strong qi. I shortened the 4th steep a bit and was rewarded with a smooth, fruity cup. I’ll post this now but expect to keep drinking this through the day; it shows no signs of quitting.
Puerh Tea TTB. This is a nice tea with little bitterness and a nice sweet note. I think there were even some notes of apricots in there. It was good. Made this when I woke up in the middle of the night and couldn’t sleep. I guess I gave up on getting back to sleep.
I steeped this eight times in a 120 ml gaiwan with 8g leaf and boiling water. I gave it a 10 second rinse. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, and 30 sec.
This was the first sheng I sampled from this vendor and I feel that it set the bar high for the rest of the productions. This is my favorite of the group for several specific reasons, but also as an overall.
Mouth numbing quality of this tea is very strong and is accompanied by astringent and light smoky/nutty qualities. Great combination of flavors. Clean taste and a thick liquor making for a smooth drink. The tea energy is sufficient, but not overwhelming. The later steeps are that of light fruit tones and soft bitter finish.
Really enjoyed this, and really contemplating buying some of this.
Bought a 50g package of this with my last order. This tea is slightly grassy and slightly vegetal. It does have a certain natural sweetness to it. It is very good as green teas go. It, however, reminds me why I don’t buy too many green teas. I’m not a big fan of them. To me, this is perhaps as good as a straight green gets. I think any big fan of green teas will really like this. For one thing it has virtually no bitterness.
I steeped this three times in a 220ml gaiwan with 5.1g leaf and 175 degree water. I steeped it for 1 min, 1 min 15 sec, and 1.5 min.
Flavors: Grass, Vegetal
Very tender in the mouth accompanied by a calming, but intense, qi. Aromas of sweetgrass, mustiness, buttermilk. Very pungeant and bittersweet as it opens up. Strong mouth salivation and thickness, deep in the throat.
Turns rather uninteresting around the 7th steep. Bitterness with no other noticeable flavors.
Candy sweet smokey aroma. Strong bitterness and qi off of the first two cups. Bitterness evens out, but still comes strong through 4-5th steeps. Bitterness falls off completely after 6th steep, only light sweet smoke remains—like a xiaguan tuocha almost. Clean throatiness and a slight roasted taste.
I really enjoyed this Gushu from Puerh.sk. The wet leaves have a pleasant nose with notes of ripe berries and peach with a little “mineralness”. The nose brings the 2009 Wuliang Gusha from EoT to mind.
The liquor is very agreeable in the mouth. It’s thick and powerful putting me in a state of bliss within the first three steeps. Definitely a lot of qi with this tea. The tea is very dynamic in the mouth and has a rather long finish in the back of the throat. Definitely a high quality fresh sheng in my opinion.
Overall this tea was pretty good. Taken in the first two steeps not as much. Definitely got some fishy fermentation notes in the first one or two steeps. I would say this disappeared by steep three and the fermentation taste was gone by steep five. It was dark and rich early on. There were some notes of chocolate in there. Getting a note in the twelfth steep that I would call burnt caramel. A sweet note but a little burnt. Possible to describe some of the notes in there as dates or fruity notes too, but this is open to interpretation. Overall this was very good. It was early so I gave it a few more steeps than normal. Gave it twelve steeps. I am sure it would have gone a couple more but I have had enough tea.
I steeped this twelve times in a 120ml gaiwan with 9.9g leaf and boiling water. I gave it a 10 second rinse and a 10 minute rest. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, 30 sec, 45 sec, 1 min, 1.5 min, and 2 min.
Flavors: Caramel, Chocolate, Dates, Earth, Sweet
The main note of this tea was the wet wood or wet storage note. There was also more fermentation flavor than you would expect for a 2000 tea. Not entirely sure who actually produced this tea. It is a CNNP 7262 blend from some tea factory. I wish I could say that this is a great tea but it is not. I gave this ten steeps and the note of wet storage never completely went away. I will have to store this nice an dry for six months and see if it improves. I couldn’t taste any of the notes people look for in a ripe tea. Never got past the wet storage.
I steeped this ten times in a 150ml gaiwan with 12.4g leaf and boiling water. I gave it a 10 second rinse and a 10 minute rest. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, 30 sec, 45 sec, and 1 min. If I had any desire to continue I’m sure I could get more out of the leaves. To be honest I don’t want to resteep this more.
Flavors: Earth, Wet Wood
Strangest dry leaf smell of smokey BBQ. The first few steeps aren’t very nice. Smoked candy is how I would describe it, but the smoke was too powerful for how sweet it is. After the initial steeps the smokiness takes a back seat to the sweetness.
As far as smokey teas go, this one stands out as being above average. When compared to xiaguan and other “smokey” factory tea, this one has more depth and a more synergistic appeal.
I enjoyed this one for well over 15 steeps and, as far as I am concerned, I’m only half way to the end of this one.
This tea has a reputation for being brutally smoky. But while I found it smoky I didn’t find it brutal. It seemed less smoky than a Purple Dayi I own. There was a nice sweetness to this brew from the beginning. It was a smooth combination of sweet and smoke. They melded well together. This cake wasn’t real cheap or real expensive at 56 Euros. Not sure what I paid in dollars. I would buy this again in the unlikely event I run out.
I steeped this eight times in a 120 gaiwan with 7.3g leaf and 190 degree water. I gave it a 10 second rinse and a 10 minute rest. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, and 30 sec. I used lower temperature water in an attempt to mitigate the smoke factor. It may have worked. I also used a little less leaf than usual.
Flavors: Smoke, Sweet
Dry leaves are dark but lighter in colour after infusion, quite mild and smooth with nice grassy fragrance, a slight astringency in later infusions. Interesting tea that tastes more like an aged longjing (dragon well) than puerh.
I usually prefer aged puerh that are 10 years and above, but I like this (thanks Peter for the free sample). I will definitely start adding some sheng to my collection.
Lovely tea. Fresh and smooth, grassy with a hint of savoury aftertaste and lingering floral scent. Tea tasted more mellow and richer from the hohin.
Flavors: Floral, Grass, Smooth
Thank you to the good tea friend who sent this sample. Couldn’t find this one in the catalog so I added it. I hope I didn’t put in a duplicate in. This tea was really good. As to fermentation flavor there was none at all, not even a trace. There were some initial notes of spice. There was a little bit of wet storage taste or wet wood but not very much. I would venture to say notes of chocolate in there too. I ended up giving this ten steeps. Would have gone for more but I was at my caffeine limit. The insomnia that keeps me from drinking tea in the evening is most annoying. This is definitely going on my list of teas to buy. It reminds me a little of the 1998 White Tuo by White2Tea.
I steeped this tea ten times in a 120ml gaiwan with 12g leaf and boiling water. I gave it a 10 second rinse and a 10 minute rest. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, 30 sec, 45 sec, and 1 min. I’m sure I could have gotten another five or six steeps out of it judging by the tea color in the tenth steep.
Flavors: Chocolate, Spicy, Wet Wood
Pu-erh.sk recently restocked on this brick. There must have been some difference between the two batches. Last time I said it had completely cleared. This time I noticed just a little fermentation flavor. Last time I noticed some wet storage taste. This time I didn’t find any. Regardless of these things this was an excellent tea. It was bittersweet in the start. The bitterness did not last long. There were some chocolate notes in this tea. And I think I would say it developed a bit of a fruity taste in later steeps although this was just barely perceptible. Overall this was one well aged shou. I gave it twelve steeps but think it would have gone a few more, possibly sixteen or so.
I steeped this twelve times in a 150ml gaiwan with 12.5g leaf and boiling water. I gave it a 10 second rinse. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, 30 sec, 45 sec, 1 min, 1.5 min, and 2 min.
Flavors: Chocolate, Dark Bittersweet, Earth
Thank you to the good tea friend who provided this sample. This is a tasty ripe tea that has completely cleared. I couldn’t detect any fermentation flavor in it. It had clearly been wet stored at some point. There was a minimal amount of wet storage taste to this tea, but certainly not enough to bother me. This tea seems to have some chi to it, an energizing chi. It has filled me with energy more than the caffeine in the tea would do. I am almost tea drunk from this tea. Drank this in my new tea cup gifted to me by a good tea friend.
I steeped this tea ten times in a 120ml gaiwan with 10g leaf and boiling water. I ave it a 10 second rinse and a 10 minute rest. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, 30 sec, 45 sec, and 1 min. This tea was hardly finished at ten steeps. If I wasn’t at my caffeine limit I would give it a few more steeps. This tea will go on my list of teas to get sometime next year when I finally put in an order with puerh sk.
Flavors: Sweet, Wet Wood
Is this tea really a GFZ? Who knows? My experience with “known genuine, pure aged gfz” is nonexistant, I just got a sample for the educational value as usual. Smooth, creamy and overall pretty amazing texture and mouthfeel. Sweet, nice humidity, coats the mouth and throat, good huigan, balanced astringency, good storage. Leaves are excellent quality, going strong at 9 steeps now.
With todays prices it’d be a no-brainer at $0.40, probable buy at $0.50, but it’s stuck at “maybe” for $0.70. It’s quite a bit of money and from first impressions I’m not convinced the value is there for me. I will consider it closely with the remainder of the sample though, because it is thoroughly enjoyable and good longevity, which to some extent can offset a high price..
Recommend getting a sample.
Drinking Sheng reminds me that I must eliminate prejudices and assumptions and bring my awareness to the tea at hand. I’m at work, listening to music and answering emails—it would be easy to mindlessly brew and drink and expect the usual “young sheng flavors.”
Luckily I paused to focus on this tea, which provided some singular tastes. The leaves looked very clean and loosely compressed so I decided not to rinse. I was rewarded with a slightly sweet, slippery mineral water taste, that reminded me of the delicious iron-rich well water we had at my childhood home. Subsequent steeps maintained the mineral water base and featured a pronounced hickory nut and peanut flavor with building sweetness that was most prominent on the tip of the tongue.
This tea definitely has its own personality that separates it from the apricot/stone fruit or floral flavors of many raw pu-erhs.
Thank you, pu-erh.sk for the sample!