Yunnan Sourcing

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Recent Tasting Notes


Drinking this from Liquid Prousts Sheng Olympics. I think I own the spring version of this. This is a very tasty raw tea with very little bitterness and an overall sweet note that you would probably call apricots or stonefruits. It was good overall. It did have a bit of a sour note in there but not much.

I steeped this eight times in a 150 ml 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, and 30 sec.

Flavors: Apricot, Stonefruits

Boiling 8 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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I gave this tea a fair chance, steeping it at a variety of different temperatures for different lengths of time, but it’s just not for me. The cake itself is ‘pretty’ and easy to break apart. However, It doesn’t have much flavor, zero complexity, and has bitter undertones. The tea itself is very picky even for a white. I found that the ‘best’ it got was @ 175 F for two minutes; it produced a strong golden colored liquor and only slight bitterness. The taste itself is sweet, sugarcane, with bitter afternotes. I find myself passing it over for other teas (most of which were cheaper). Overall, overpriced and unenjoyable – I find it a struggle to drink a full cup of this.

Flavors: Astringent, Straw, Sugarcane, Sweet

175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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Flavors: Floral, Sweet, Vegetal

205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 30 sec 4 g 3 OZ / 90 ML

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I would recommend this as a very good value, easy to drink young sheng. It is sweet and fresh, making it less bitter than many young sheng. I brewed this in a 100 ml fixing pot with 5gr and quick steeps starting at 10 seconds and increasing 5 every other steep. The first couple of steeps were very light & fresh, dominated by vegetable (cooked spinach, chard) with hint of spice. By the fourth steep, this opened up with less cooked leafy veg and more spice plus a minty mouthfeel — all with that distinctive Ye Sheng varietal note. A good tea but not a great one … and it is a good value everyday pu’ehr

Flavors: Mint, Nutmeg, Spinach, Sweet

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

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Excellent, but robust green tea. Not traditional in the slightest and borderline black tea territory. It has light smoky notes. The main flavor is Potato/BBQ potato chips and is very savory and full mouthed. Nice complexity and an extremely bold flavor for a green tea. I immediately fell in love with it. It paired nicely with a cheeseburger and salty chips, and would be a nice tea to accompany a meal. I will definitely order again. If you don’t like heavy teas this green laoshan is not for you; the taste is overwhelming.

Flavors: Potato, Smoked, Umami

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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From the GCTTB (round 6)

This is a very interesting, but very delicate, white tea. I’ve never had dried buds before, but I appreciate white teas for their unique flavour.

A tiny bit fruity or floral, a bit musty, and a bit like the smell of pussy willow blossoms. Maybe I’m just reminded of the shape, but it kinda seems vegetal, but not in a grassy/vegetation way. I’d say more of a new plant bud kind of way. It tastes like how it looks is what I mean. It is obviously from a plant, but but stemy/green at all.

Flavors: Dandelion, Fruity, Musty, Tea, Vegetal

170 °F / 76 °C 5 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 17 OZ / 500 ML

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Thought I’d try something from the Sheng Olympics this morning. This was an overall nice tea. It had only a little bitterness early on and a bit of astringency. Both of these got replaced by a sweet note that I am not sure how to describe. Maybe apricots is still applicable or maybe this tea has moved on from the apricots of a young sheng. The note is hard to place. This tea did become quite nice though.

I steeped this 14 times in a 150ml gaiwan with 7.4g 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, 2 min, 2.5 min, and 3 min. This tea would probably have gone a couple more steeps but I had had enough tea at 14 steeps.

Boiling 7 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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Started with 209F water rinse expecting to get an astringency bomb like some of the other wild arbor YS raws but this rinse water is pleasant. I’ll keep the water at this temp for a couple steeps and see if it stays tolerable. 1st steep (flash) astringency is still low, good sign. Some of the wild arbor YS samples I just haven’t been able to taste anything past the astringency. Nice mineral and root vegetable flavor, more sweetness than I usually get this early on in a raw. If it keeps tasting like this I’m in for a treat! 2nd steep (flash) is getting brighter and astringency is rising a bit. It’s a bit grassier but still has that nice root veggie umami. 3rd steep (flash) is about the same. 4th as well. 5th steep I went up to like 10-15s and it’s getting a bit too astringent. Still tastes nice, decently complex and wide. 6th+ the flavor doesn’t change too much but it’s still good.

I’ll for sure be buying a cake of this!

Boiling 7 g 5 OZ / 160 ML

I tried this sheng recently. I got a cake blind buy. Was pretty enjoyable. I might get another to age.

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This is a relatively nice puerh as they go. It was good but not what I would call spectacular. It is good enough to warrant drinking again. It started out bitter sweet with a fair amount of fermentation flavor left. There was nothing unpleasant about the fermentation flavor. This puerh needs another five to ten years to fully clear in my opinion. After a time the bitter note disappeared and a sweet note emerged. Not sure what to call the sweet note.

I brewed this twelve times ini a 160ml Solid Silver Tea Pot with 14.2g 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. I could get a couple more steeps out of these leaves but not too many.

Flavors: Dark Bittersweet, Earth, Sweet

Boiling 14 g 5 OZ / 160 ML

I get your vibe on this.

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Dang, I really wish I knew how much this sold for when it was around.

It has some bitterness in the first three steeps which is somewhat odd because when this stated to brew out, it seemed to be humid stored in some way. Some nice notes to it which ended up becoming sweet as I went on.

Great body heat from this one without realizing; kind of creeped up on me.

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This are gorgeous, although blacker than they look in the photograph. Two of these in a gaiwan, steeped gong fu, saved me after a rough day and a raging headache. There is something about taking the time to steep them thoroughly, watching them unfurl, that is supremely soothing. Sweet, malty, chocolaty and smooth, with no astringency, even on longer steeps (although it can have a dark chocolate bitterness to it), this tea is almost too good to share. Like a piece of chocolate that you sneak when nobody’s looking.

Flavors: Chocolate, Dark Chocolate, Malt

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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This was the third tea in a gift set sent to me by a tea friend from Yunnan Sourcing. The first two teas were pretty bad, so I hoped this tea would be the one to save the day.

Upon the first aroma I was pleased to smell no flaws. The tea smelled light, with a little roast; nothing too impressive but nothing as horrible as the last two.
The taste more or less matched. A light roast with notes of orange, reminiscent of Qi Lan. This was the typical middle of the road roasted tea, no flaws but no great attributes. As I was tasting it though there was something off that I couldnt figure out then I realized it, this tea had no body. A main component for wuyi wulongs is their body, and yet this tea had none. I was basically drinking roasted water. I steeped it a second time with a slightly longer time to see if something would change.

The second steep provided some texture, another thing lacking in the first, but once again very little body. Another review called this tea perfumey and I think they are spot on. I think all this tea has is aroma., there is something else to it. There is a bit of funkiness to it as well.

For this tea I’m going to stop on the second steep cause I know nothing else is really coming.

Final Conclusion:
Besides for a small funkiness this tea had no flaws. That being said it had no positive attributes either. It’s like a normal guy who stands there doing nothing, whose breath kinda stinks.

Flavors: Oak wood, Orange

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Liquorice, burnt caramel, alkaline. Wet pile smell, but not so much on the taste. I think the two quick rinses washed that away quite easily. Thick and clear. This one went to my head quite quickly, which I wasn’t really expecting. Tight compression on the cake.

Aftertaste really is like having eaten expensive, low sweetness, hard liquorice. Brewed leaf smell is like very strong bitter chocolate that has that sharp acidic taste… plus minerals.

Enjoyable definitely. Looking forward to next time.

Flavors: Licorice

200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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This tea took me several drinks to really develop a good review of it. I would say it’s got mild complexity to it, but at the same time the overall flavor is pretty subtle for a puerh. The taste/smell is primarily mushroom, but interchanges with a traditional “earthy” puerh flavor . There are hints of nuttiness here and there. There is definitely astringency that follows and this puerh does not feel full bodied. Overall, not very smooth. The shape is harder to break pieces off than a regular cake. The taste just isn’t bold enough for me – it’s not an undrinkable tea, but I think I’ll try something different next time.

Flavors: Astringent, Mushrooms, Nutty

200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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A thick, creamy, rich tea. For me, a good ripe is like a good Irish stout – an earthy and creamy richness balanced with a grainy dryness that hints at sweetness but never quite gets there. I would say this tea fits squarely in that sort of realm.

This tea definitely shines when you use plenty of leaf – don’t be cheap otherwise you will left with a brew that is a little too dry and sawdusty. I used 9 g for 90 ml and was a very happy (and caffeinated) camper.

The only drawback is that I feel like it does not develop a great deal. This could be due to two things: 1) it is not a blend of different leaf sizes, thus leading to a more uniform experience, and/or 2) I’m not a ripe connoisseur and generally find most ripes to be a little less complex than other teas. Take what you will from that!

Either way, definitely well above cheap ripes – no off flavors or wateriness here. Quality brew.
Dry leaf: EARTHY – rich soil, coffee grounds, cream of wheat. In preheated vessel: nutty sweetness, cherry cordial

Smell: EARTHY, WOODY, SWEET – cream of wheat, oatmeal, cherry wood, dark chocolate with cherry, rich soil, cola

Taste: EARTHY, SWEET – cream of wheat, oatmeal, coffee grounds, cocoa powder, pumpernickel bread, faint cherry wood sweetness, hints of dried date and fig, hints of bourbon in later steeps

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 9 g 3 OZ / 88 ML

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So I wanted to push myself to do these reviews because I want to force myself to be more objective about tea. I’ve been drinking for years and mainly I just chug, and find that when I talk to people I’m either like “I like this” or not but can’t say why. So anyways. I like this tea and I can’t say why, because every time I have it I just end up chugging it. It’s got a little bitterness which feels very “concentrated” somehow, but like I said I didn’t stop to think about why. Otherwise is sweet but not overpowering and not too floral. It has good thick mouthfeel. For some reason the energy it gives feels very “concentrated” also: didn’t give me jitters or make me feel teadrunk, but made me feel like I was going somewhere. Very affordable. 4 sessions so far.

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.one does not drink this for taste, The first thing to know
.mind in the sky, That’s where you find the drinker
.feelings of the face, Known things start to disappear
.I’m not high, I promise you

Yunnan Sourcing said this was a bitterfest of a tea and that’s absolutely correct. It was hard to sip through it, but it made Christmas Day very ‘light’

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Summary: Apricot-honey pudding hiding in teacup, but never feels like tea

Prep: 60cc gaiwan, 3-4g, boiling water, steeps starting at 10s and going up to about 3 min
Sessions with this tea: 3

Taste: As others have mentioned correctly, apricot honey dominates. Starts out with some astringency turning into sweetness, which then fades and is just mild sweet. A tiny bit floral and mildly mineral. Good aftertaste, lasts several hours. Is pleasant but kinda bland.

Body: Very thick mouthfeel. I don’t get much energy from this tea at all though. Or really any body feeling. If there hadn’t been hot water in my mouth I wouldn’t have known I was drinking tea.

Moderate, pleasant but will probably not buy a larger quantity of this one.

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I bought this sample randomly when I decided I wanted to try one of Yunnan Sourcing’s higher-end offerings. The dry leaf had a slightly “green” straw aroma. After a rinse, I was mostly smelling sweet straw.

It started out with mostly straw in the first steep, but from the second steep, the sweetness really kicked in. First it got a bit cakey, then the flavor got a little bit higher, tasting almost fruity.

Steeps 4-8 were the best for this tea. Enough bitterness to give it a backbone, backed up by sweet vanilla and a bit of a mineral note. It was decadently thick with a mouth-coating effect. I started to feel some steady qi as a rising warmth in my chest. The huigan was powerful and lingering, all but begging to be slowly sipped and savored.

The tea started to give out just a touch by the seventh steep. It lost a good amount of the thickness it had possessed, and the pleasant bitterness mostly dissipated. There was still a lot to like about the subsequent three steeps. Some good straw sweetness re-emerged, and the finish was more of a clean woodiness than vanilla. It lasted through around 11 or 12 steeps – probably would have gone longer if my sample wasn’t totally loose.

I enjoyed this one quite a bit. A fitting tea for my 300th Steepster note!

Flavors: Mineral, Straw, Sweet, Vanilla, Wood

Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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There was a brief moment this morning when I thought my kettle had finally called it a day. Thankfully, it was just the electricity acting up again. And even more thankfully, the furnace continues to purr and clatter on. All good.

This is a remarkable tisane with the scent and taste of sunflower seeds and roasted peanuts. Very nutty and totally drinkable.

Flavors: Nuts, Peanut, Roasted, Roasted Barley, Roasted nuts

Boiling 7 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

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