Yunnan Sourcing US

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Recent Tasting Notes

85

This is a tasty tea. Some sweetness, some sour, but well balanced. The taste lingers on the back of the tongue. A thick feeling tea.

It’s got some bite to it when left to steep. :)

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83

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Flavors: Floral, Smooth, Spicy, Spinach, Sweet

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 30 sec 7 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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Dry cocoa with a hint of that dark chocolate bitter taste from the first bite.

A different type of taste than the higher grade stuff from Verdant. When it comes down to pairing: this is a tea to enjoy with something, while the Verdant tea is something to drink on its own.

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83

bready, smooth tasty tea. heh. A non smoky version of ZSXZ. I haven’t tried this version from Yunnan sourcing, so happy to see it in my box from my tea sister. Enjoyed this one while finishing up the last of the household crap in MUCH nicer, sunny yet cool weather. Here’s hoping fall is here to stay and that the humidity is over!

Final count:115

VariaTEA

Yes, this weather is definitely nicer than the disgusting humidity/heat of the summer.

Evol Ving Ness

Hear, hear!

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83

The other 2015 autumn version from my comparison today. Hot and cold this one is more up my alley than the spring 2014, however it’s not as delicious as i remember it being.

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97

The brew to this smells more appealing after the Classic version—more like a chocolate biscuit. The wet leaves almost smell like a hot cereal with cocoa. There’s something almost liquor smelling about the brewing leaves that leaves me a little dizzy with anticipation. I’ve never had the Godiva chocolate liquor, but it’s how I would imagine it to smell.

The cocoa flavor is much more pronounced than in the YS Classic.; it comes out of my nose as I breathe out. The dark chocolate flavor becomes sugary as it cools, and the flavor turns a little bready. I’m getting chocolate croissant feelings from this tea. There’s a bit of astringency that brews out in subsequent steeps, and any bitterness is like that of a dark chocolate rather than a bitter black tea; it’s very faint.

I did a comparison on the YS Laoshans against Verdant. Full post and photos here: http://www.catlaittea.com/2016/09/05/laoshan-showdown-yunnan-sourcing-vs-verdant/

Flavors: Baked Bread, Cocoa, Sugar

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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85

From the Puerh TTB # 5
Backlog 25 August 2016

Smokey and floral notes throughout. There’s a bit of sweetness that lingers on the tongue (stone fruit?). There is a slight astringency in the mouth; which goes away after a while. The 9th steep has a slight honey note that arises from the tea. I sure do enjoy Bulangs!

mrmopar

Bu Langs are good stuff!

S.G. Sanders

That they are!

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90

Love this tea. Seriously will be picking up more once i get through the large-ish order i already have of this one and the classic grade. this year’s harvest at least, is a substitute for verdant’s version imo.

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85

I purchased this in hopes of finding a substitute for Verdant’s, since I won’t purchase from them anymore due to their deceptive marketing. This was quite similar to theirs – tiny curled leaves, and a rich malty chocolate type brew. I found this to be a bit lighter and fruitier than what I recall from Verdant. It is quite good.

Sil

i think i like the classic grade a tiny bit more from Yunnan…and it’s winning so far against the verdant teas i have in stock atm.

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80

Bought 50g of this a while back and am just now getting around to trying it. It is relatively good. There is a slight malt note. There are some chocolate notes. Also, I’d swear I’m getting a roast note. I don’t think this tea was roasted so maybe I’m misinterpreting something else. Overall I like the tea. As to is it as good as Verdant’s? I don’t think I’ve ever tried Verdant’s so I don’t know.

Steeped this one time in a 16oz Teavana Glass Perfect Tea Maker/Gravity Steeper with 3 tsp leaf and 200 degree water for 3 min.

Flavors: Chocolate, Malt

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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This is my last session with this tea, about which I said someplace else that I don’t see myself spending $190/bing on it.

I had a single chunk of beenghole material that clocked in at exactly 8g, I was able to slip in the pick and separate it into a half-dozen or so flakes pretty easily. When I warmed these by putting them in a heated gaiwan, I didn’t get much smell. Sort of generic maturing raw puer, with a bit of sweet hay or grass. I rinsed with boiling water for about 20s while pressing the leaf flakes with the edge of a teaspoon.

The first five or so steeps are mostly a sort of light-fruit sweetness, like white grape or apple. There is a nice enough mouth feel but not a real coating effect for me. I’m steeping with 208F water like 5, 10, 15s… and it takes until the 6th one before the leaves are really unfolded/unstuck from one another. A little bit of aged (OK, partially matured) flavor starts to show up at this point.

My previous couple of sessions with this portend that it’ll last 10+ steeps of gradually downhill from here. It’s nice tea, but does not have any special power that I feel, or taste that knocks my socks off. If I hoped to find why people rave about LBZ by drinking this tea, it was not successful. Maybe a Spring pressing of the same material would be more impressive.

Flavors: Apple, Drying, Leather, Tart, White Grapes

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85

This is a nice puerh with a fair amount of bitterness in the early infusions. I also noticed a sour note for the first couple of steeps. This could be because this teat was dry stored in New York for a few months before I decided to try it. After a few steeps a sweet note emerged in this tea. Pretty much the standard notes for young sheng, apricots and stonefruits I would say. Overall this is pretty good tea. It has an aftertaste that lasts a while. It is very pleasant in later steeps. As far as qi goes I didn’t feel any from this tea but I rarely feel qi from any tea so it does not surprise me that it is sadly missing. Maybe I’ll feel it as I finish my last cup who knows.

I steeped this tea twelve times in a 150ml gaiwan with 8.1g 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. It had not weakened much in the twelfth steep, it would have gone a few more steeps but I had reached my caffeine limit for today.

Flavors: Apricot, Bitter, Stonefruits, Sweet

Preparation
Boiling 8 g 5 OZ / 150 ML
tanluwils

Cha qi for you is a bit like caffeine in coffee for me—no noticeable affects. I found the 2015 version to have a good amount of qi—enough to get me tipsy by the 4th infusion. It’s interesting how much it’s evolved since last year.

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85

This cake is complicated. I like it. A lot.
The completely conflicting reviews I’ve read are interesting. Some say due to wet storage this cake is very aged for only being a 2007, others state a lack of any wet storage notes. I’d have to agree with….. both. This cake is very interesting, especially for the price.
Not overly aromatic sitting in the wrapper, but upon steeping this up I immediately noticed a lot of green left in the leaves and a noticeable flowery fragrance. While still being fairly green, I did get a hint of wet storage flavor in various steeps. Early on there was definite bitterness, but the age/wet storage was there as well. Around steep number 5 or 6 this cake hit a beautiful balance of sharp young sheng flavors I enjoy and a slight aged profile to smooth it out.
I would definitely recommend this cake to several people:
-Anyone just starting to get into aged cakes, as it’s not overly aggresive with the aged or wet storage profile
-Someone who doesn’t completely favor young or aged sheng, as this has enjoyable qualitaties of both
-Anyone on a budget, it’s stupidly affordable for what’s being offered
-Someone looking for a cheap cake to continually drink and follow the aging process without worrying too much about it

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96

I had this tea for quite some time, and I had no idea I owned it. I was attempting at some late spring cleaning, and I came across a jar of this. I decided that I should finally give it a go. The leaf is heavily compressed and gives off a smooth and sweet scent with some heavy woody base. I take in the familiar tang of tobacco common with most aged sheng. I warmed up my jianshui and placed a chunk inside. The aroma deepened into a thick candied fragrance with syrupy textures. I take in a light smokiness and some slight tobacco. The leaf gives an underlying aroma of brown sugar. I washed the leaves once and prepared for brewing. The mouth sensation consists of a full feeling thick like oil. The taste is sweet with honey syrup. A muddled grass tone lies underneath. The huigan is great and potent and lasts extensively after each sip. The later steeping brings on a slight bitterness to intrigue along with dry tones to wipe away the palette. The qi began as a wonderful cooling effect that washed over my body. The feeling proceeded to cause me to really space out. A lingering taste of sugarcane and sweet vegetables followed me. The qi began climbing and my hairs were rising. This brew was very stimulating, and the huigan was sweet and drowning. i really liked this tea. I love the teas that are not the prettiest looking and almost seem unwanted, yet they surprise you with such a memorable session. I enjoyed this tea so very much!

https://www.instagram.com/p/BE_1YfgTGfa/?taken-by=haveteawilltravel&hl=en

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Drying, Heavy, Honey, Smooth, Sugarcane, Sweet, Tobacco, Wood

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

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85

I found this sheng to be very sweet and quite long-lasting. Used 7g in a 100mL gaiwan with boiled water (turned it down to 200F later in the session). I drank this over a 24 hour period, leaving it overnight because I had to get to bed before I finished the session, it took so long. 17 steeps total I believe.

The leaves from this tea are pretty cool looking, with some white/silver leaves mixed with different shades of brown and green. Dry, they smelled buttery and fruity, and after rinsing the leaves, it was more of just a sweet fruity/maybe herbal aroma. Different from most raw puerhs in that respect.

I successfully kept my steep times down with this one, as I seem to fail to do so often! Working on that! So I got almost 10 steeps in before my steep time rose above 20 sec. Right from the start this tea was thick and sweet, with honey and floral flavors dominating it. Also got some grassy/hay flavors in the front on a couple steeps, always accompanied by a nice honey sweet finish. The texture of the liquor was creamy even through the late steeps. On my 4th steep I was reminded of brown sugar. Even that steep had the honey finish, so definitely one of the sweeter raw puerhs I’ve tried. In steeps 3-7 or so, the thickness and flavor were very notable not only in my mouth, but as I swallowed as well, giving a good throat-feel which I don’t get all that often.

I didn’t get too much of the fruit flavor that I smelled in the leaves (like apricot). It reared its head just barely every once in a while, but I only tasted it distinctly on my final steep, when I just left some water sitting in the gaiwan for maybe 5 min.

Towards the middle of my session, it started to get a little drying and just a touch bitter. This was right before I went to bed last night, so when I came back to the tea, I lowered the temp to 200 degrees and was rewarded with another 6 or 7 lighter but still pleasantly sweet cups of tea.

I really did enjoy this session, but I don’t think I would want a full cake of it, because at some points it was almost sickly sweet to me at some points. As I drink more puerh, I think I’m starting to find that I like mine to have at least some bitterness to them. Makes them seem stronger maybe. I wonder how this tea would age. Not much of any bitterness to age out of it – would it get sweeter? That might be crazy lol.

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Creamy, Floral, Fruity, Hay, Honey, Sweet, Thick

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

Bulang, Mang Fei and Lao Man’E have that good old bitter to them. I like the bitter as well.

Matu

I’ll be on the lookout for more of those! I had a sample of the 2014 Bulang Beauty from Tea Urchin and its been one of my favorite shengs so far, so definitely need to try more Bulang. I’ll remember the other ones you mentioned as well next time I go sample-shopping! :)

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85

Bought this from the international site.

Strong. I get a big vanilla note and a big roasty note with some floral aroma. The minerality is subtle.

I did this Western style in yixing 87C, 1 tblesp, 150ml for 2min, 3min, 3min, 4min, 5min. Strength carries through the first four infusions.

5th steep is getting lighter with a soft fruit note and slight woodsiness.

I’m a little wary of brewing this in the same yixing that I use for Whispering Pines’ Wildcrafted Da Hong Pao. I wonder if the medium-strong roasty note in this tea will overwhelm the fruity flavour of the clay absorbed from the WP version. Or is that getting a little pedantic? It’s not like I can afford the WP version on a continuous basis anyway.

Can’t feel any qi with this one but I do feel rather relaxed.

Still on the hunt for a fruity DHP. I really enjoyed it though and it’s at such a great price point. If I had the budget, I honestly would order one of every DHP listed on the Yunnan Sourcing website.

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89

It’s rare that I drink flower infusions, but this one really intrigued me, so I purchased from the Chinese site (not the US one despite title here).

Firstly, the cake itself is beautiful; I’d be happy to have this on display..but drinking is even better.
Steeped aroma is of milk chocolate, dried strawberries and musty earth (the mustiness is not unpleasant nor a fault).

Very rich on the palate, coating all parts of the mouth with honeyed sweetness, chamomile. Long finish.

quite delicious

I make this in a gaiwan. It requires a bit of coaxing to get a thick liquor on the first steep.

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88

Dry leaf: EARTHY, SMOKY, SWEET (noticeable barbecue-like sweetness and spiciness, hay, tobacco, campfire, hints of raisin, cola, black cherry, wildflower honey)

Smell: EARTHY, SMOKY (strong tobacco, hay, black walnut, campfire)

Taste: EARTHY, SMOKY, SWEET, FRUIT (tobacco, stewed tea, hay crispness, barbecue-like smokiness and sweetness, black walnut, dark honey, blackstrap molasses, cola, dark dried fruit – fig, prune, – stewed raisins, autumn leaves, hints of cinnamon, allspice, and clove). This tea has already changed significantly over the year I have owned it. It has gotten noticeably sweeter and more complex, and, frankly, more delicious.

If you are like me, you are met with a barrage of birthdays, anniversaries, Hallmark holidays, and various other things that require gift-giving with not the slightest clue of what to give. Make your life easy and get this tea for that special person on that special day. Or get this tea for yourself on that special day. Or any day. Great tea – great price – gift box included. What more could you want?

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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The Trails of LBZ, Case 8 of 6
(Liquid Proust search for his favorite laser beam zensheng)

So… I got on Steepster and looked around to see if anyone owned some of this because the samples were and are sold out. Being that it is $190 a cake, it’d be a gamble that if good would be a steal for what it could cost but if not it would be a whole $190 out; or just saying an opportunity cost of possibly 2 Dong Ding cakes and a Jingmai cake.
So, I found someone and tempted them with the now sold out 2009 LBZ that YS had which was at $240 but I doubt that is what it would be sold for now. That tea set the bar for everything else period. As the best sheng I ever had, I’m still upset I cannot buy it as it’s the first cake I’d pay a few hundred for: http://steepster.com/Proust614/posts/335389

The leaf looks like nothing special and has a scent of old tobacco and whorish storage; it’s been places :P
The first few sips were odd because it was like a tea that was made from wood and then aged in a tobacco jar that wasn’t fully cleaned. With those thoughts aside, and being authentic on my experience, I found that the storage notes faded at around steep 3ish. Now it was time to play with this : )
So… this is darker than I would like it to be, which has something to do with being 11 years old and the storage that it has gone through, but I was able to push through multiple steepings of this because of those feels. Taste wise it stays with that grandpas old tobacco that grandma hid 30 years ago so he couldn’t have it and then someone stored some sheng in it not knowing that it needed to be cleaned.
So why are those feels what am I talking through keyboard? Yes, something as if that sentence you read correctly and now I recollect thyself.
breathe
Okay: This tea did a few things for me. Number one, my eyelids are heavy and I look like I fell asleep in a hotboxed car and just woke up. My arms are really light feelings so I can be one of those outdoor floats if I wanted to be right now. This is a calming tea for me, like a … relax and let time continue on slower than it really is passing by; I could talk about the perception of time and the time that Data encountered this complex issues in The Next Generation, but now is not the time.
So the taste of this is not what I prefer but this feeling of just floating on a cloud and letting the cotton candy caress me is quite enjoyable as well is the clarity of my imagination that I’m trying to hold back on while I write this up.

I hope that the same that I sent to my friend ends up being favored over this as well so I can find more confidence in myself in evaluating tea. As the world of evaluating tea is very scary when it comes to pu’erh, I want to establish myself as a laid back dude who knows taste accommodation with people who will vouch for me as I start to bring people in and make recommendations.
Wait did I begin blogging on this tasting note? Okay, so back to watching the end of The Flash and Arrow; wish these shows didn’t have to take a whole year to start watching again, I’ve really enjoyed the nightly discussions my dad and I have while watching them.

mrmopar

Thanks for reviewing this. I was a bit on the fence on it and that is clear now. I get the same effect with the good ones.

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90

From the Pu TTB

A nice slightly aged sheng thats lost most of its greenness. Sweet and herbaceous with notes of sugarcane, basil, and moss. Slightly vegetal and mineral with a floral rose quality. I liked this one quite a bit and decided to pick up a cake, it’s a good price for a tea with a little age behind its back.

Flavors: Earth, Herbaceous, Mineral, Moss, Raisins

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 5 OZ / 150 ML
Kirkoneill1988

never found most of those notes in a sheng

hey, try a cake that’s 10+ years old! you will not be disappointed :D

tperez

It’s a pretty unique tasting one!

I’ve tried a few over 10 years but not many. The only one I have a cake of is the 2002 Yiwu Ancient Spirit from YS, it’s nice! I’ve been thinking about adding some more aged sheng to my collection, but its hard to find a good one that isn’t too expensive :(

Rasseru

Try a Xiaguan 8673 or 8653 from ’05 or ’06. The one I have took a while to air a bit but has a lovely strong aged flavour. Ive seen them in the $40 range

tperez

Thanks for the recommendation Rasseru, who sells those?

Rasseru

I bought from an ebay seller that is no longer in business.. I have the 8673. afaik the 8653 is only smaller grade leaves, such as this http://www.ebay.com/itm/2005-Yunnan-Xiaguan-8653-Raw-Pu-er-Tea-Free-Shipping-/221867756805?var=&hash=item793fd1f534 (a bit more expensive than I thought $64)

Kirkoneill1988

@tperez, sounds yummy, can you link me?

@rasseru, sounds awesome! does YS sell it? if so, can you link me?

tperez

Thanks Rasseru! I may have to try it

Kirk, its here http://yunnansourcing.com/en/otherfactories/1994-2002-yi-wu-ancient-spirit-raw-pu-erh-tea-cake-330-grams.html its nice and kind of camphor/spicy, the price has gone up a lot since I bought it though

Rasseru

I havent seen these cakes on YS, but berryleb has a good reputation here for selling decent puerh. The ones I have bought have all been good.

Kirkoneill1988

Thanks guys

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86

nice daily drinking dahongpao. familiar notes of wood and forest, cooked celery, roasted almonds (bordering on some marzapan sweetness) and minerality.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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I was excited to try these tous ever since I got them in a swap with Matu, but never really got around to it until today. I’m sort of a sucker for cute pressings—I was won over by Nan Jian’s 2011 Mushroom just because it’s a mushroom. Anyway, what I’m trying to say is that I was excited to try these things, primarily because they’re so cute.

I knew something was up when I dropped one of these into my gaiwan and saw a bunch of tea dust fall off. Not promising…but I hit it with a double-rinse and started brewing.

I don’t know how to say it nicely—this tea is gross. Bitter, astringent, with no fruit, hay, or interesting notes I’ve come to like from other puer. Sort of thick, I guess? But mostly just bitter all the way. I’d say avoid—they’re cute, but taste like puer instant coffee.

Matu

I’ll have to try one of these again. Haven’t had them in a while and reviewed them shortly after I started getting into sheng. Everybody else seems to hate on them lol

JWhisk

Yeah, curious to see what you think!

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