Yunnan Sourcing

Recent Tasting Notes

93

I’m shenging again! Woo!

Method: 3.3 g, 3 oz, 205 degrees, rinse & 15-20-25 seconds, filigree gaiwan and Dr. Who mug

Aroma: Wow. The dry tea smells just amazing. Grapes and some other delicious thing that I can’t quite place. I bought a sample b/c the cake is pretty pricey. I kept sticking my nose in the bag!

Flavor: Smooth and sweet. This is a little fruity, but not with the apricot flavors I normally find in the shengs I have tried. This is harder for me to determine, but I really like it. It’s so pretty and comforting. It leaves my tongue tingling a bit, also. There weren’t any reviews for this one, so I think I just picked it on a whim. Go me!

Edit: And I lied! I did another set of steeps at 20-25-30 and the apricot IS there! These steeps are more brothy as well. I’m watching Sharknado 2 with this really excellent tea. Sheng happy!!!!!

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 3 g 3 OZ / 88 ML
Stephanie

Nice!! Also sheng high fives :)

Sarsonator

High fives, eh? I thought that if I drank enough sheng, ya’ll might show me the secret handshake :p

TheTeaFairy

(That’s because it’s a teacret handshake…)

TheTeaFairy

Glad you’re enjoying your first YS sheng :-)

Sarsonator

Ha! I am going to keep shenging on until someone shows me the teacret handshake! I will not be deterred!

TheTeaFairy

(Been shenging for a while and still don’t hold the teacret hanshake. Some say it’s mystic, that you must reach the level of Sheng-Jedi to obtain it…)

Sarsonator

OK, I shall forge ahead!

mrmopar

Have you gotten the sheng “Sweat” yet. I know it sounds crazy but the good ones will cause it.

Sarsonator

Noooo! What phenomenon is this????

Stephanie

Tell us Mr Mo!

mrmopar

You will just kind of break into a little sweating with a powerful sheng. It usually happens in the later steepings as I think the leaf gets really hydrated and puts forth some of it’s essence.
I usaully sweat on the forehead and under the chin/neck area.

Sarsonator

Interesting!

JC

LOL! I freaked out the first time this happened to me. I think I was having a Lao Man E blend. It was winter, my apt(DC) has really big windows so the apartment was cold, at the end of the 4th steep I feel light headed. I was similar to getting of from the bed really fast in the morning, but lighter. Then I realized I was sweating and shaking my hands a bit and I felt hot in a cold apt. :P

mrmopar

Lao Man E , Bulang and LBZ seem to hit the hardest.

Sarsonator

I’ve definitely felt some physical effects, but I don’t recall any sweating. The lightheadedness has definitely happened.

Stephanie

I’ve gotten a little light headed before, but not noticed sweating. Neat!

Stephanie

What is it in sheng that does this to us, exactly?

mrmopar

I don’t know what causes it but do a 10 gram steep with 10 oz. water for about 30 seconds sometime.

Sarsonator

will do!!!!!

KiwiDelight

I’ve learned about so many scary things about pu’erh these past couple days, it’s ridiculous.

Stephanie

Are you talking about the “what’s in your pu?” Thread?

KiwiDelight

That too. Pu’erh is such a beast.

mj

I just tried my first sheng. It made me feel very caffeinated for about 15 minutes and then I literally could not stay awake. I feel asleep in my chair in the middle of analyzing data at 5 in the afternoon. After 45 min or so, I woke up and felt normal. It was a weird experience.

Sarsonator

Ooohhh… interesting mj. I haven’t experienced that before!

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95

For the first time in months I’ve had a chance to brew a tea gongfu. This tea looks like melted honey, and is a very deep, chocolatey malt black tea. The dry leaves are among the most beautiful I’ve ever seen, and are sure to impress even non-tea drinking friends. There is a very slight hint of astringency to it, which is unusual for Yunnans. But I only got the astringency when brewing gongfu.
It is really worth brewing this tea gongfu, as it brings out a depth of flavour that Western style brewing simply doesn’t.

Sirens sounded a few minutes ago, with really loud BOOMs. Cat is terrified, and I was pretty startled, even though I’m supposed to be used to it by now. :/
Tea. Just tea.

Dexter

I can’t imagine ever being “used to it” – stay safe!!!

boychik

Stay safe.

mrmopar

Glad to know you are safe. Keep posting for us.

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87

Ah, vacation!
Been a long while since i tried this one. Decided to do it westernstyle with water from the tetsubin. It taste like most yunnan blacks but with a smoky flavour added to the usual malty sweetness.
I do really prefer this tea gong-fu to bring out a stronger flavour.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 5 g 15 OZ / 450 ML

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87

A lovely easy to drink young sheng. Very little bitterness. Flowery and sweet. I’m not sure if it will age well, but it is a great drink now for sure.

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Balanced, complex flavor and a sweet after-taste. Moderetly compressed factory cake – not too difficult to pick. Evidence of a few buds and whole leaf. Tea soup is a clear reddish brown with a wood and fruit flavor profile. Seems to resteep several times (4 so far) and still produce a flavorful cup. Appealing quality to price ratio making it a solid choice for an everyday ripe puerh.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 4 OZ / 125 ML
boychik

i was wondering about this shou. thanks for the positive review

DigniTea

Certainly a bargain at the current price of $11.70 from YS USA (IMHO). Interestingly I bought it for less than $10 several months ago before they raised pricing on most items.

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75

Terri sent me this a long while back and though i’d had it a few times now, i haven’t yet written about it because i hadn’t really figured out how i felt about it. Often with puerhs i generally either really like them right off the get go, or i dislike them. This falls into that random not sure how i feel about this sort of puerh. it’s sort of malty..but mostly just kinda of middle of the road, not really committing to anything solid. I feel like this wouldn’t be a bad intro to puerh for someone who didn’t like really bold black teas or something. Would i ever purchase this myself? nope. I’ve enjoyed others more..but it’s not a bad tea.. thanks terri!

Cavocorax

Are you still sipping down? How many more do you need?

Sil

oh i am still sipping down… working from home today so i can go through a few of my puerh samples lol

Cavocorax

Bahahaha. That’s awesome. I’ve been drinking my puerh too for the same reason – a lot of little bags. :)

Sil

i might actually make my sipdown goal this month…though my oldest tea goal won’t be made.

Cavocorax

Woohoo!
Also, c’mon. That’d be totally unreasonable if you made BOTH goals. You’re already making everyone else look bad. Hhaha

Sil

I figure i can meet my oldest cupboard goal by september. I’ve got 6 january teas left, 2 feb and 2 march…so by September i should be through all of those. That being said, uh April, May and June teas are ridiculous but i DO have 3 months before i have to be in to those.. Just need to keep my purchases down so that i can get through teas heh

Cavocorax

That’s really decent! A lot of my old teas are actually matcha from the contest I won last Sept, so I just need to focus on matcha for a bit… After that it’s purchases from Black Friday. :) So my oldest cupboard is older than yours, but so long as I stay under 1 year I’m happy.

Sil

yeah i’m happy under a year as well, mostly i’m just trying to see if i have it in me to be able to get a 6 month cupboard going by figuring out my purchases…you know, me and games and organising. lol

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88

I received this as a sample with my first order from Yunnan Sourcing. In the past, I have tried darker versions of favorite teas and have been put off of them because my expectations were different in my head. THIS time, I’m clearing my head of all expectations…just because a tea package says “Yunnan”, shouldn’t mean I expect yams and raisins and apricots, right? Well, it’s a good thing I cleared my head!

This tea is a wonderful Yunnan in it’s OWN way ~ and I’m saying that in a “OOOOOOOH!” way! In the cup, the tea smells of raisins and a touch of yam…. but there is something else…..a lovely yeasty-grainy-toasty smell! It’s the first time I’ve gotten a toast note from a tea, but there it is! Black Gold has a medium mouthfeel with a wonderful depth to the flavor. The bottom notes of yam and raisin are not heavy, but when paired with the toasty grain middle note and the stone fruit top note, the tea becomes more complex…more wholesome feeling than the average Yunnan….similar to having oatmeal for breakfast compared to cereal…is it possible for a tea to have a “stick to your ribs” quality? If so, this is it! This tea is very much a hearty breakfast tea alternative, expecially for those that love teas from this region. And that would be me!

Flavors: Grain, Malt, Raisins, Stonefruits, Toasty, Yams

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 45 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
Cameron B.

I really like the bread and toast Yunnans! Not a big fan of the darker earth/smoke ones though. :P

boychik

one of my many YS faves. glad you liked it

Sarsonator

I’ll have to try this one on my next YS order :)

Sami Kelsh

Ooh, nice. I love a good wholesome, toasty tea.

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I was excepting something different and exotic with the Yak Butter but it wasn’t much different from the milk teas I was having earlier.
I’m not sure what yak butter tea suppose to taste like, I’ve only had cow and goat butter teas, it don’t really taste much like a butter tea to me, but it does have a buttery smooth kinda mouthfeel.

It has that same little twang that all these instant milky teas have and it’s super creamy and smooth and not too sweet, not quite as sweet as the milk teas.

I didn’t get the salty one, I want to try it now tho :)

Sarsonator

I’m so happy you reviewed this. I am really interested in Yak butter teas. I have no idea why, because I don’t eat butter, but I find these fascinating. My boyfriend wants to try these, so they may end up in my house soon anyway!

Cwyn

Excellent note, thanks! I have a box of the salty version that I bought for a Buddhist friend who wants to start making yak butter tea. I figured we could always add sugar but I don’t how much salt to put in. I also ordered a Xiaguan Tibetan Flame mushroom (2007, I think) for my friend to make the real thing, but we are going to use the boxed tea to get some idea of how it should taste first. Your note is helpful. I am not sure if I can take the real yak butter tea. My friend is from India so I am not worried for him so much.

Stephanie

So jealous!

Hillel

Funny you should mention this. I’d been wanting to try the real salty-and-buttery deal for a long time, so my beloved got me a gift certificate to the Rangzen Tibetan (http://www.rangzenrestaurant.com/) restaurant near us in Cambridge, Mass. First of all, the food was absolutely terrific. Even my kids were raving about it. The tea? Well, what can I say? Poecha tastes exactly as described on the menu “Traditional Tibetian [sic] tea blended with butter, milk and lightly salted.” For those of us accustomed to unadorned tea, the addition of butter and salt is, well, startling. It wasn’t bad tea, but I’d say it’s definitely an acquired taste that I have not yet acquired. I am absolutely thrilled, however, that I got to check that one off my tea life list. as I told my kids, it’s a new experience, and one should never pass up an opportunity to try something new.

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86

This is a nice slightly aged sheng, and pretty economical. It brews a deep fall orange and has a mixture of dry and juicy flavors. It can be pretty bitter if brewed with lots of leaf, and must have been a real bruiser when it was young. Light camphor flavor, peach, sandalwood, tobacco, walnut, and fall leaves are the flavors/scents that come to mind.

This is the first tasting note I’ve posted for quite a while now, and it feels good to be back on Steepster. I like the new interface, and it’s great to see that the pu’erh loving community here has expanded.

Flavors: Camphor, Peach, Tobacco

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 5 OZ / 150 ML
boychik

I like to read your notes. Hope you will post some more;)

mrmopar

Agreed this one is pretty nice. The young apprentice has returned…. :)

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85

Needed a shou hit this morning. Searched for something I had tasted before since I did not feel like any surprises -2007 Gu Ming Nan Nuo mountain tea. The tea is comfortably woody and robust with an undertone of honey. All in all a very easy ripe tea to enjoy. I picked this cake up at Angelina’s Teas for a mere $21 and I think it is still available. If you are looking for real Nan Nuo mountain leaf at a very reasonable price, I would highly recommend it.

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

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87

This is a nice little gem from the Boyou factory. The cake has a nice feel to it – a pretty wrapper and all. It is very tightly compressed. First infusions are sweet and flowery, with notes of Lucky Charms. Later infusions taste a bit deeper and darker, with some age showing through. But it still tastes young overall, probably because of the compression. A little huigan, sourness, and just a touch of astringency and smoke here and there. Overall a nice drink.

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80

a nice little tuo-cha :) tastes good to me :P although not as good as the other Pu-ehr i got from Yunnan sourcing

reminds me of those glue sticks in grade school with the rice sent lol :P
also i never heard of the herb they use in this tea before :)

thank you to Scott Wilson and Yunnan sourcing :)

Flavors: Earth, Forest Floor, Herbs, Rice

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 8 OZ / 250 ML

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90

Today I sat down with the last of my second brick of the 2010 version of Menghai’s Lao Cha Tou ripe pu erh brick. I’ve now gone through 500g of this stuff. My remaining chunk was around 9g so I just used the whole thing in a 185ml yixing instead of having 2 smaller weaker sessions. Also, it’s nice to finish with a tea in my daily rotation box as it makes room to take a new one out of storage and add it to the rotation! :)

I like this tea because it is deep, dark, rich, and creamy. Perfect when I’m in the mood for a creamy rich decadent puerh that gives and gives. I’m on my 7th steeping at 15s and the liquor is black, and I mean BLACK! I can hardly see through it when I’m pouring the tea into the pitcher or cup! And that’s after SEVEN steepings!!! The flavor profile is not very complex… notes of dark chocolate syrup, leather, and perhaps a hint of dark cherry wood. Very dark and rich. Not much in the way of cha qi, and some mild hui gan in the early steepings.

This tea becomes interesting in the later steepings as the leaf portions start to open up and change while the nuggets are still giving strength to the tea. In typing this I moved on to my 8th steeping at 20s… still black, but now I can see through it when I hold it up to the light. I love it! I’ll probably approach 20 steepings of this tea today. While it’s nothing too spectacular this is a great tea for a dark, rich shou pu erh experience. Another solid shou from Menghai.

EDIT: On my 17th steeping now, the tea is still giving a golden – amber colored liquor and has really opened up with a deep soft lingering sweetness after an early punch of mushroom with light floral essence. Still tasty!

Flavors: Dark Chocolate, Dark Wood, Leather

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 9 g 6 OZ / 185 ML

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100

An awesome and extremely smooth and mellow ripe Pu-ehr tea! :D i can taste earthy taste. its the best smooth and mellow ripe Pu-ehr i have ever tried! :D many thanks to Scott Wilson and Yunnan sourcing

Flavors: Earth

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 8 OZ / 250 ML

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90

a yummy tea! :) tastes like strong roses too :) though when brewed it smells a tad bit fishy but for some reason has no fishy taste :) maybe it should be aged more thus why the fishy smell. still a yummy tea. thank you to the staff at Yunnan sourcing and to Scott Wilson

Flavors: Earth, Rose

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 0 sec 5 tsp 8 OZ / 250 ML
Indigobloom

If it smells fishy, give it a “rinse” first. Use slightly cooler water than you would for brewing, and just dunk it for 5 or 10 seconds. I find it helps

Indigobloom

(also, dump the rinse and then brew like you normally would)

Kirkoneill1988

i do rinse it :P but i don’t mind the fishiness ;)

Indigobloom

in that case, enjoy! :)

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88

Another blend from YS. I liked this one quite a lot. It’s quite easy to drink young, but still feels like it has the potential to age. Kind of that cereal sweetness, with some astringency but not too much. It’s thick, with a medium high kick factor, and has got a little huigan. Going to pick up a cake of this for sure.

mrmopar

Got one of these aging away. I bought it from the description. I will have to break it out soon.

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100

I received this as a free sample :) another wonderful tea :) nice and smooth and a tad Smokey in taste :) many thanks to Yunnan sourcing and Scott Wilson for this amazing free sample. :D

Flavors: Earth, Smoked

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 5 min, 0 sec 5 g 25 OZ / 750 ML

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100

what an awesome pu-ehr! I can taste a tad bit of camphor and a lot of mushroom :) although its hard to pry from the brick (as it is dry) there’s like no fishy taste :) (even though I don’t mind the fishy taste) it tastes best when I let it steep for quite a while. many thanks to Yunnan sourcing and scot Wilson for this wonderful tea! :D

Flavors: Camphor, Earth, Forest Floor, Mushrooms

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 5 min, 0 sec 7 g 25 OZ / 750 ML

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98

Wasn’t sure what to expect with this one. I have several black teas around, including a black tea puerh cake. Usually black tea is about controlling the bitterness, or dumping in milk if all else fails. Wild Purple puerh can be really astringent and this is pretty much the same leaf. So I debated whether to grandpa a bit of this or gongfu, went with the gongfu in xisha clay. The leaves are long and very lightweight, so 3 grams of this is actually a lot of leaf. The usual 100-115 ml of water on the boil, one rinse. Braced myself for bitter.

The results? A floral smelling soup that actually transfers into the cup! Tastes like roses and the wild sweet pea blossoms I liked to nibble on when I was a kid. I am not a chaser after florals in tea, but this flavor is naturally present! Completely smooth with a touch of leather and wood, like a train trunk. Steeping cup after cup, the sweet smell and taste brings tears to my eyes. A harsh day at work melting away.

I don’t give high scores lightly, not that the scoring system is all that meaningful for me, but I really doubt I will ever taste a finer black tea than this.

Flavors: Leather, Peas, Rose, Wood

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 3 g 4 OZ / 115 ML
K S

Loved this review!

Roughage

Peas and roses? This tea sounds very English country garden. Great review.

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86

This tea is quite likeable. It has a nice flavor, some sweetness, a nice bit of astringency and even some huigan. It could be just a little stronger, but it’s not too bad at all. It held up fairly well to a number of infusions. It’s a nice blend, I think it might age like a good Dayi. I am going to order a cake.

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Sample from the Terri ‘s box – awesome never ending .
Gongfu
4g 100ml gaiwan 205F
Rinse/15/15/20/30/45 etc
Leaves are long twisted black and some gold. Smells heavenly. This tea is not as heavy sweet as others from YS. Nevertheless I like it. It’s different. Malty, nutty, not sweet, but there is sweetness in aftertaste. Some slight astringency but not unpleasant.
Thank you so much Terri for such a great variety of teas you supplied me with.

Preparation
0 min, 15 sec 4 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
boychik

I lost a count maybe it’s steep 8 @ 1 min with homemade carrot muffin it’s delicious , deep orange color, soo good

Cheri

That sounds so good.

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82

When I feel like having something new, I just fetch a pouch from my Terri Box.

She generously sent me what she had left of this precious tea. Delicious little tiny golden snails, so pretty to look at.

Of course, I was curious to compare them to Whispering Pines’s “wee snaily yums” Golden Snail Yunnan Black, already a favourite.

They do look identical, but are completely different in taste. Though I much prefer WP version, this is still yummy, no doubt.

What surprised me the most was to find some smoke in there. Don’t know if my taste buds are playing tricks on me but it’s very noticeable. In a Keemun kind of way.

It’s sweet, but it’s missing that silky barley sugar feel I get from WP.

It’s fuller bodied and maltier, not as delicate and complex. I’m missing the floral and spicy notes I find in WP.

To me, it feels like a good robust black tea, which is something I would seek early in the morning. Just not what I was expecting from what is supposed to be a more mellow and smooth kind of tea.

Maybe I over leafed? Luckily, I still have plenty to try it again.

So yes, compared to WP’s Bi Luo Chun, it looses the battle.

But as a nice breakfast tea, it’s a winner, loved it!

Thank you so much Terri Harlady for giving the chance to try so many teas from Yunnan Sourcing :-)

Sarsonator

Weeeee snaily yummmmzzzzzz

boychik

This is Autumn tea so it has a little diff profile. Also it aged, so probably new flavors developed as it aged. I want to age some of my YS teas to see the difference.

Cameron B.

It’s Wee Snaily Yums’s cousin – Teensy Snaily Yums!

I really want to try this one! Will definitely order it when I get around to YS…

TheTeaFairy

Sars, can’t help yourself right? I do the same every time :-)

Boychik, It could be the reason, the difference is HUGE!

Haha! Yes Cameron, totally Teensy :-)

Sarsonator

No, I’m sorry.

I just adore snail teas. :)

TheTeaFairy

Hey, a girl is allowed to let loose at the end of the her day….

What’s on your sipping menu tonight?

Sarsonator

I am currently drinking the GTT Honey Black! Round 2! Writing it up now.

I am leaving soon to go babysit my (alomost) 3 year old nephew, so I figured I could use a little black tea energy!

TheTeaFairy

Oh! Yes little boys need to play!!! I know what it’s like, my godson just turned 4, precious boy :-)

TheTeaFairy

OMG he’s adorable, awwww!!!!!

Ok, here’s my little guy, he’s also my nephew:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/laafeevertee/14206250704/lightbox/

Sarsonator

He’s so sweet!!!! Too cute!!!

boychik

Cuties!

boychik

I don’t have autumn 13 but I have spring 14. Should send you a sample to compare ;)

mj

Just going to jump on this “showing off the nephew” train. Here’s mine, he’s almost 1 :)

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0ByLDTxpzm4N2Y3NQTzNfSHIyc1k/edit?usp=sharing

Sarsonator

OMG mj!!!! He’s precious!

mj

Thanks Sarsonator :) I love your nephews chubby little cheeks! So adorable! TeaFairy, your nephew looks so cute in that little hat :)

TheTeaFairy

Mj, your nephew is so darn cute, thanks for sharing :-) showing off nephews is fun!!!

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