Yi Heng Xiang Tea Factory(Dragon Teahouse)
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Recent Tasting Notes
Started my day with this using yesterday’s leaf. I really could have used less leaf I suppose. Of course had I used less I might not be getting such good results. I bet there is an inch of leaf in the bottom of my press and some of the pigtails have still not unfurled. The ones that have relaxed are huge leaf. Today I started with a 45 second steep. The brew is still deep golden in color and still has a smoky aroma. There is no bitterness and even the sheng brightness is well behaved. Today this is nutty like almonds and melts into a green planty aftertaste that is almost like oolong. I am still getting a lot of cheek tingle and the dryness that comes with it. The brew is smooth and thick feeling.
I am almost a complete novice at puerh. I know what I like and know enough to say for me sheng is a more complex cup whereas shu tends to be stronger flavored. This sheng does not have the sharp edges or brightness of most young raw puerh. It is pretty mellow. Some of the notes are passing and subtle while others are obvious to me. All in all one of the most interesting raw puerhs I have experienced.
Over leaf and over steep!
This is $10.99 for a 100g cake. Get some.
The dry leaf is smoky and citrus. I used more leaf than normal for me. It was probably 10g. I did not do a rinse. The first steep with boiling water was 1 minute. I know the puerh people did 15 second steeps but I live on the edge baby. Yeah, that’s how I roll. The liquor is deep golden and is dark and smoky with kelp notes in the leaf.
I could catch smoke as I lifted the cup but that ends the moment the liquid hit the lips. Instantly I got the creamy sensation of vanilla. This changed just as quickly to mineral, then again to a floral like orchid and maybe very light lavender. The sip finished with what for lack of better words was an ash like scent but it was way more pleasant than that sounds. This is a mellow cup of sheng. If you sip quickly it is like leather and spice. It made my cheeks tingle and filled the lungs with a cooling sensation.
Lots of leaf and longer steep = Much love for this one!
This is my only non-sipdown tea from yesterday.
It’s an interesting tea. The tea leaves are twisted & layered into delicate little ‘ropes’, which I’m sure takes a lot of practice, & then the tea is aged in cakes. It’s amazing looking, & I’ve wanted to try it since the first time I saw a picture of it. I used to actually do rope braids with my hair, so I admire the people who spent hours creating this interesting looking tea. And of course, I’m always a sucker for novelty in presentation, right?
So I gave this one a try, treating it like I would any other Sheng. I tend to go conservative on Sheng, so I dropped 3 G worth of pigtails into my pre-warmed green yixing (it’s really sand colored, IMO), & let the leaf relax for a minute. Opening the lid, the aroma was light smoke, greenness, & a little spice. Nice!
Steepings of 5/10/15sec/etc…
The earliest cups were a pale green taste with a pinch of salt. Gradually the flavor of Cherrios built up, which later transformed into the flavor of oatstraw tea (yes, I drink it sometimes. It’s a great source of minerals, like calcium & Magnesium, & it actually tastes pretty good too). A creamy vanilla sensation emerged, & at 40 seconds the cup was sweet & mild, still with a pinch of salt & an almost buttery taste, and a touch of almond.
The later steepings took on a slick texture, reminding me of Aloe, & a soapy aftertaste.
At this point I had a bad memory of drinking blue unicorn horn tea, which had a salty soapy tasty & made me sick to my stomach, so I ended this session. Overall, it was a pleasant session. It’s a very mild sheng, & I have enough to drink it one more time, so I think I’ll try to go a little stronger next time. :)
This tea is very similar to the “Handmade Plait” tea I possess. This whole cake is made the same way just pressed into a beeng. It chips off in whole plait peices if you break it carefully. It seems more like a light green tea when brewing. It is not strong but very light in brew strength and color. It has the familiar grassy and tobacco of many young shengs. I think the manufacture style on this would deem aging longer than most others as these “plaits” really take about 5 or 6 infusions to fully unfurl. Personal note is you could take a strand or two to work drop into a cup of hot water and instant tea. It does hold together well and I found almost no need to run this through a strainer.