White 2 TeaEdit Company
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Recent Tasting Notes
I didn’t think I’d write a review this weekend as it didn’t go so well. Anyways, I tried to escape the emotional pain via tea; in case you were wondering, it doesn’t work.
Here’s my attempt: http://postimg.org/image/648w2w0hf/
A few hundred cups within 72 hours and here I am drinking this absolutely wonderful tea that I had to come online to review it. First let me say this: There is no better deal out there that I am aware of, roughly $6 for 50g… absolutely blew my mind.
This was a sample someone provided for me and upon my first sip I had the same thoughts as I did when I first sipped Repave: There goes my paycheck.
However, the price on this is CHEAP. This tea has a thick texture that makes one think of molasses but taste of chocolate from another dimension. The smell wouldn’t tell you that and neither would keeping the liquid in your mouth, but once you drink it down there is this immediate robust flavor of a dessert that you’ve been craving all day (even if you haven’t been, you will realize it was there all along).
I’m just in shock at how amazing this tea is. I’ll be buying a decent amount of this to share with others because when you find something great, why wouldn’t you share it?
Backlog from a few nights ago.
I took a nice chunk of this (aboug 6g), gave it a rinse with 90C water, then steeped it for about 14 steepings. The dry leaf smelled very fresh and green.
However, this tea was really really mild. I got some fruitiness and some grassiness, maybe a little bit of astringency, but there wasn’t a whole lot there. I used 6g, 90C water, and quick steeps. Should I up the temperature a bit, perhaps? I just sent a sample to Ubacat and have about 9g left.
I’ve heard stories about this tea, so I was excited to finally be able to try. The cake has a Menghai appearance. Being so, an array of long twisted pale green moacha loosely compressed. The cake gives off a slight fruity and vegetal aroma. I broke off a chunk and placed in my warmed yixing. The scent deepened into fruity damp oak scent; there was a slight camphor or eucalyptus background. I washed the leaves and got ready for the brew. The liquor is a bright clear yellow. The leaves give off a sharp green and wild scent. The flavor is pure menghai. This brew gives a peppery kuwei taste that is slightly smoothed with some fruit. However, this brew grows more and more bitter. The liquor gives a prickling sensation on the tongue and makes my arms have goosebumps. I take sip after sip and feel my neck prickle. The flavor is spiced and evenly bodied. There is a slight huigan present in the brew, but it is largely dominated by pleasant bitterness. the qi is prominent and powerfully driven. It gave me quite a push. This was an aggressive energy present in this leaf. This was a good brew; however, the flavor died rather quickly. I was able to get about eight full bodied steeping sessions. The kuwei died down at about the fifth steeping. This brew was not as bitter as I expected. I was told that this was a punch to the taste-buds, and it should cause me to drawback. I might have a little bit too high of a tolerance, or I should have let this cake rest a little bit before brewing. I believe it was the latter. This was still a very good brew, and I was informed to use more leaves and prepare for a bold brew. I just may do that next time. I’m happy to have tried this tea, and I’m glad I survived the New Ameryka 2 session!
Flavors: Biting, Bitter, Fruity, Pepper, Sweet, warm grass, Vegetal, Wet Wood
This is the most beautiful maocha I’ve ever seen. I was compelled to take photos before actually steeping it, which can be found here:
Wet leaf aroma is fruity sweetness and autumn leaf pile.
One rinse. Flash steeps to start, then I push to 5 seconds, 10 and then even longer (confession: I rarely if ever count. I wing it. I’m a steep winger. Is that bad?)
Also started with 200f water and stayed there, because I’ve had an aversion to boiling water and young sheng ever since I read Cwyn’s blog post about it.
Live blogging commencing now…
1 2 3 4 starting to feel it now 5 aaaand I’m sweating 6 the leaves are really expanding now – so lovely 7 honestly, next time I’m having one of those days in the dead of January where I just cannot get warm, I am going to drink this tea 8 wait, is it 8 or 9? Oh my. I am suddenly and completely tea-stoned as crap and I have just spilled about half of cup 9 or 10 all over myself (another reason why boiling water is BAD). One more cup and I’m going to walk away and take a shower because I am sweating like teenage boy after a cross country meet. See, this is why Bosch isn’t for beginners. Experienced pu’er drinkers do not spill Bosch in their shoes. 10 cups and I find myself whinging aloud “how much more tea is in this tea?!” as the leaves are still not done. But stick a fork in me, I am.
General thoughts: I love this sheng. Very slight/light smoke. The flavor overall is light and not overly sweet but by no means simple and if I were more experienced or just better at articulating things I could explain, but alas, I am neither. Most surprising/puzzling thing about this is that there was no bitterness… I kept waiting for the bitter come out of hiding and smack me in the face and it never did. Considering how sensitive to bitter I am, I am absolutely ok with that. This is as close to drinking green tea while not actually drinking green tea that I’ve ever come. Wait, what?
I need a shower.
Had this late last night – I should have had it earlier in the day because I went to sleep far later than I wanted to.
~6g of dried leaf in my gaiwan, 5 second rinse with 90C water, and successive steeps of ~5s each. The taste and colour were both very consistent from steep to steep. The tea was generally a very nice clear amber colour, and the tea was consistently smoky. No bitterness or astringency.
However, I find that when I drink shengs, I am not a huge fan of smoky flavours. I can see why others here enjoy it, but this tea was lost on me. I prefer apricot/grass/leaf flavours instead.
From the Puerh TTB #3
One of the benefits of organizing the TTB is that I get first crack at the promotional teas. Two days ago I received a huge box from Paul at White2Tea, which was really exciting, but then I found that I already owned about 80% of the teas, so won’t be taking samples. This was one of the few I hadn’t tried.
I also want to set an example in writing reviews, so I’m posting this right away. I’m afraid the review may be a bit confusing as I’m kind of emotionallly involved with the tea. When I made my purchase for the moving day sale I went back and forth between this and the If you are reading this… and went with the latter. Then I started reading all sorts of reviews of how good pound cake was and was filled with regrets. Now I don’t know whether I’m doing a sour grapes thing (oh I bought the right tea) .
So, on to the tea. I wasn’t as excited as some of the other reviewers. I think part of the reason for this is that there is a vegetive/weedy element to the taste that while not unpleasant doesn’t add to my enjoyment. I’m mostly a black tea drinker and I think a green tea drinker would find this more appealing.
The tea is structurally sound: good nose, reasonably strong taste that blends smoothly into a good finish. Early steeps have a weedy straw flavor to a more woody style that has a lot of acidity but not much bitterness. Moderate cha qi. Not a lot of complexity in any given steep.
I have an unusual steeping style: 2 grams in 50 ml for 10, 10, 20, 30, 40, 60 s. Usually the flavor peaks at the 3rd steep, but this one kept going and I found myself liking the 4th steep better than the 3rd and the 5th better than the 4th. There is an appealing richness, and I’m noticing more complexity.
I had to pick up some of these as everyone kept raving about them. They steep up dark pretty quick, but they’re light on flavor at the beginning. It takes maybe four or more steeps to get them going, and you really gotta steep them out long….several minutes, and then they’re amazing! Sweet, rich cocoa, mmm! Reminds me of Mandala’s special dark…that kind of cocoa, but maybe sweeter! My kinda Shou! I almost feel like I shouldn’t like them though, because aren’t they like the leftovers? The scraps? So delicious though!
That’s what I’m saying after the 10th steep of this… I’m not saying that because it’s the best, because interestingly I have had better, but because this has to be the highest quality sheng I have ever seen. Of course the 2012 Wild Monk from Mandela is the best sheng I’ve had (that tea stole my heart), but as for quality… this one takes it. The picture on W2T’s website of the steeped leaf is exactly what this is. The leaf is 85% + in tact and it looks wonderful.
The taste is clean with a mild umph to each sip. I think the last 8 years slapped the bitterness right out of this tea as it is smooth. The odd part is that during the first 45 minutes of drinking this tea I was eating a chocolate pie with caramel all over it and this didn’t taste nasty… nor is it sweet, it just seems to be fantastic so it doesn’t matter what accompanies it.
I can safely say that Hekai and I are going to become great friends :)
Wow! This tea is everything and much more than everyone has said. Pulled out my gaiwan and did 5g for 100ml. Let me tell you, I felt the effects almost immediately. I did 20+ steeps. One very short rinse and then very short steeps. The effects of this sheng are very potent yet you don’t think that based on its taste and texture. It does not feel like this young of a sheng. Very smooth and mellow. Not as dry as dry as other young Shengs I’ve had. It is a very well balanced sheng. Can’t say enough about this one. Do yourself a favor and get you some of this.
I decided to review this tea in part because of the recent conversation on the discussion board about the W2T freebies.
I’m not a big fan of shou, so was slightly disappointed to find that 150 g of my free tea consisted of this single half-cake of shou. However, I’m finding it really enjoyable, largely because it doesn’t taste (IMHO) like a shou.
I gave it 3 5 second rinses, because I really hate the fermentation taste and have found that I can be prejudiced against a tea by the initial steep. By the time I started drinking, there was little to no fermentation taste. The initial steep reminded me of a sheng of similar age; the color was orange-brown and the taste was spice and herbs. Subsequent steeps became more shou-like: redder with a strong berry fruit component.
I was sipping this while watching football when around the 6th steep I stopped and said to myself "Wow, this is really good. The taste was very smooth and fruity, with noticeable sweetness. Not a lot of aroma, but the finish was wonderful. Based upon the early steeps, I thought this would fade quickly, but steeps 6-10 (all 1 minute) have been really good.
Ironically, this may be my favorite shou, and I have no idea what it is.
The first time I had this tea, I drank it gongfu style side by side with Qilan Fire. I have since had the opportunity to brew both of these teas using my preferred oolong method, which is in my yixing pot. My pot is quite large, nearly 300ml, so I brew for a longer time using only 3g of leaf. So I let this one steep for 3 minutes, and I have to say that I am completely in love with this tea. I was quite fond of it before, but now we’re talking about a serious, deep and abiding forever kind of love. A love I haven’t experienced since my first Tie Guan Yin. That’s really all I have to say. Other than a big thank you to Paul and to the wonderful tea master/alchemist who created these magical leaves.
This is a wonderful daily drinker. The cake is composed on small thin curls. The cake is an array of fall colors and carries the typical sweet Menghai scent. I broke a chunk and placed in my warmed yixing and gave it a shake. The Menghai charter arose from my brewing vessel. I could take in sweet aromas with slight vegetal scents. I washed the leaves once and prepared for brewing. The session started as sweet with a slight tang. The brew was floral, syrupy, and light hay. The brew grew a little bitter with some heavier green wood tones. This drink kept a consistent tarnished bronze colour. The taste was not complex, but it was a steady sweet and tang. I really enjoyed this, and it is unbeatable for its price. The leaves were mostly whole and combined with a mixture of buds attached. I will be picking up more of this tea for some daily drinking. I also agree with this company, for this is a wonderful introductory brew for puerh newbies. In fact, I will be giving this out to some people I am trying to convert to the Sheng side, hahah.
Flavors: Floral, Green Wood, Hay, Smooth, Tangy
This tea is just short of perfect. I think I have a new favorite, or at least a going in my top 10. The dried leaf is massive. This cake has long and slender shining maocha that is loosely compressed. This long haired beauty has an enticing aroma of sweet forest moss and cedar in the background. I pulled apart a generous chunk and placed in my warmed yixing and gave it a shake. I haven’t had a sheng session in a little bit, so I was missing my sheng pot. It was nice that we got to spend some time together. It might sound weird, and I don’t know if there is anyone else that feels this way, but I get to know my teapot and I miss it when I don’t sit down and just chill with it. Anyways, the warmed leaf smelled amazing! They gave off a sweet and deep floral scent mixed with a green aroma. It was like the forest floor after a summer rain. There was just so much intensity with this aroma. I washed the leaves once and prepared for my session. The brewed leaves gave off a heavy vegetable aroma and sweet spiced tone. The brew is a translucent pale gold. The taste is something spectacular! This is exactly what my body has been craving. This brew has so much intensity and flavor. The taste begins sweet and syrupy, but it mixes with a light bitterness and vegetable background. It has characteristics alike a Nepalese green tea. Then, the brew reforms to a potent sugarcane with a moss floor. It’s earthy, sugary, and slightly sour. The brew continues this way and grows more and more sweet with each steep. There is a lasting huigan after each steep that is, OH SO GOOD! The qi is quite potent, as most Menghai brews are. It begins without notice and then slams full force. It grabs your mind and lifts off. This qi continues to build with each moment. This is a wonderful tea. It gives a high quality brew without the stress of it being too pricey. The leaves are beautiful. I spotted complete and whole leaves and buds mixed within my yixing. Their color are a pale vibrant jade. The only downfall with this brew is that it falters after some steeping. The brew still delivers a tasteful drink, but it is nothing compared to the first three steep sessions. I believed this brew would last a bit longer. I am still in love with it. I am very happy to have more, and it is definitely going in a top 10 best for me.
Flavors: Earth, Forest Floor, Green, Sugarcane, Sweet, warm grass, Vegetal, Wet Moss
So I received this tea as a freebie with my white2tea order. The little cubes are nicely compressed. They are not as tightly compressed as I thought. I gave it two 3 second rinses and it was already breaking up. I gave this 5 steeps starting with 10 seconds and adding 5 seconds with each steep. It was very light colored the first steep but really darken at the second steep. Still pretty dark at the 5th steep. It is a sweet shou. I also get a taste of dirt. As if I would have taken a hand full of dirt and stuffed my mouth. And surprisingly, it is great. Overall a great little shou. I used four grams for 100 ml.
Flavors: Dirt, Sweet
This was such a pleasant roast. The dry leaf consists of long crimson and dark brown leaves. The give off a very fragrant char and fruit aroma. I placed a generous amount into my warmed gaiwan and gave them a shake. The aroma was even deeper than the Tree counterpart. The scent was like raisins and roasted peaches. It was a deep ember like scent. I washed the leaves once and prepared for brewing. The taste is wonderful. The liquor is a lot lighter than I anticipated. This roast tea is not overwhelming charred. There is still a lot of green and sweet character still in this brew. The flavor is not as complex as Qilan Trees, but it is still very potent. The aroma began as a roast and ash, but it formed into plums and sweet nickel. The tea has a very rocky flavor. The taste is full of minerals and covered with sweet peach. The best part of this tea is simply the aroma. My tea room has a lingering rocky and fruit aroma that continues to stay put. I’ve even washed and put all my teaware away, and the scent still stays. Personally, the Qilan Trees is my favorite, but this is a beautifully roasted oolong that I will certainty treasure.
Flavors: Char, Fruity, Green, Mineral, Peach, Roasted, Sweet
This is everything you want in a light roast oolong. The dry leaf consists of long beautiful strands of a dark green tea. They carry a lingering sweet and tangy aroma. I placed a good amount in a warmed gaiwan (barely fit) and gave it a shake. The scent could not be contained in the gaiwan. I could smell a warm wood, grape, and fruit scent wafting from my gaiwan, and I haven’t even lifted the lid. I knew that this would be a treat. I washed the leaves once and prepared for brewing. The scent began sweet and herbal. It gave off the feeling of juice and thirst quencing. The brew was a tarnished bronze, and it refracted the light quite well. The taste was spectacular. It was smooth and ever changing in the mouth. It combined well with the different aromas. The flavor reminds me of a spring TGY mixed with Baozhong. It was a delicious remedy. The aroma then deepened and spread out with more mineral and stone fruits. The flavor followed. The taste became subtle yet stern. This brew was more earthy, like shale and nickel, yet it was covered with a forest tone. The tea kept consistently dark and flavored well throughout steeping. I was able to pull at least 8 or 9 steeping sessions, which is a lot for a roasted oolong. The end of the session left my teacup with a slight golden liquor that tasted of mineral and nectar. This was a wonderful tea, and I’m happy to have more to share.
Flavors: Cannabis, Fruity, Grapes, Green, Herbaceous, Limestone, Mineral, Roasted, Stonefruits, Sweet, warm grass