pu-erh of the day. Sheng or Shou
2009 WuLiang Wild Tree from EoT. This is a VERY pleasant experience, possibly the best Wild Puerh experience I’ve had by far. The tea has very apparent notes of Honey and Wild fruits with some more subtle and complex notes like spices. It is a very aromatic tea that delivers well beyond its aroma.
Having a 2009 Rongsheng Bada Mountain from the Puerh Shop. Pulling this one out to see if it will make the grade for “pumidor” occupation. I broke off about 10 grams of this cake. It was highly compressed more so than other cakes I have. The leaf still has a touch of color and a hay like aroma dry. I gave it a 5 second rinse to open up the leaf. i did a 10 second steep of this to start with. The aroma is orchid and honey mixed in. It still retains much of the young bitterness with some drying astringency on the tongue. It carries a lemon on the lips and some woodiness in the cup. It carries a medium strength with some camphor to it. Still a little young so I will use the space it once occupied for a different cake.
Having 2009 Bada Mountain Spring Tips Pu-Erh from the Puerh Shop. Pulled this out today also to try. It is way less compressed than the previous one I tried today. It broke off easily with some decent looking full leaf in it. I put 10 grams in the Gaiwan for brewing.This one has a slight grassy metallic aroma to it. It gave decent color in the cup and as I pulled some leaf out you could tell it was barely processed. It has a pretty thick mouthfeel to it with some hints peas and asparagus. It really seemed to be missing something so I put a little honey in the cup. This really made the flavors come up. it does carry some tannin bite to it but I think this will be one to mature over the years.
2000 CNNP Lincang Ripe
This is the oldest cake I own. Picked it up during Yunnan Sourcing’s recent sale and when it arrived I had to open it up and pull out the leaves that had collected in the bottom of the wrapper. 7 grams of dry leaf with ; 4 oz boiling water; 15 sec rinse; I began steeping the tea at about 10 seconds and added 5 for every succeeding infusion. It yielded a very clean red-brown colored liquor but I have to say that I was a bit disappointed in the flavor. There was the earthy and musty taste one might expect but it was rather flat. The third steep, however, produced a smooth and sweet taste with a rich, medium body and not a hint of bitterness. In steep five, I began to detect notes of fruit and chocolate. I’m drinking steeps seven and eight now and find them very enjoyable. Cake is now rewrapped and in “puerh storage” for a few weeks in hopes of rehydrating a bit before I try it again.
Oh that sucks that it was too dry. This is one of my favorite Shu Pu. I bought a few of them and have the stored in a Yunnan Clay pot, check them every 2-3 months, I love the smell. You got it from the China site or US site?
Well, their storage is in Portland, OR so in comparison they definitely have a drier and colder environment, so it is harder to maintain the cakes. You should try the China site if you get a chance, at least for samples and check. (The downside of Puerh is how hard it can be to store in drier/colder environments).
Oh yes and several times I’ve ordered from China. Sometimes my impatience wins out and I grab things from the US site because I then receive it in 1 week.
I’ve never ordered from their US, but if it was too dry I’d imagine it has to do with the location. I’ll try to find teas I already own from the China site to see if I have a similar experience. But that 2000 Lincang Ripe is one of my favorites, the low fermentation gave it ‘life’ in my opinion.
2011 Xiaguan FT Tibetan Flame Mushroom, so good, this stuff is seriously narcotic.
I’m having the Silver Peacock Bulang Mt Habitat 2012, which I got back in March. I posted under my notes if you want to catch what I said, typos included there.
I’m into my third round for today. It maintains that tarnished silver kind of beauty and in my second round I noticed much more sweetness when held in the mouth. Smoky too, producing that roached-throat effect that many people prefer. I think I burned my tongue eating the chicken livers and jasmine rice for lunch today, but I’m just now noticing it with this round. Otherwise, it produces some strange effect which I can only suspect to be “gangnam” pesticides. For some reason, I’m picking up much more on the sweet than I am of the bitter. Such a beautiful tea liquor and fabulously developing taste. I’ll continue to sample but probably wait another month or two to have again.
Having a 2009 "Hai Lang Hao “Lao Man’E Wild arbor” sheng. I agree with previous notes on this. it brew a nice golden hue in the cup. It has a lot of bitterness almost to the point of being smoky. It is very intense and one of the most “upfront” and strong shengs I have tasted. The aroma will remind you of an Xiaguan with smoky notes. This is a strong bitter sheng but not astringent. It will leave a good tingle from the middle of the tongue back. You will savor this one after drinking a while I think. The “dryness” on the palate along with the bitter is intense. I added a small amount of sugar and it brought ut some sweetness to the brew. Only 1 cup so far as I think it will knock my socks off tonight. A stout sheng for sure.
This is a nicely priced somewhat aged shu I purchased from Dragon Tea house, a 2005 145 gram cake for around $10. It is a very nice tea. It brews somewhat dark, roasty, and is fairly smooth though there is some bitterness. It’s not a perfect tea, but great for the price. It faded rather quickly, but the first few infusions were quite good. Similar to a Menghai shu, that kind of deep compost earthy flavor. I would recommend giving it a try!
The certificate that comes with the tea says, among other things:
This product can be drunk either in freshness or after reserved for some time.
Drinking way: shell the tea biscuit first, steam and knead it in loose state ready for use.
Hmmm. What the heck? I never knew we were supposed to steam and knead our tea cakes?!
For the past couple of days, I’ve been drinking a sample of the 2008 Menghai Dayi Hong that a fellow Steepsterite sent me. It is mellow and with a hint of cedar and allspice, and has helped keep me going through the past few days’ revision. The Dayi Hong finally reached the end of the trail this afternoon and I have dug out a 2004 Hai Lang Hao Big Snow Mountain to keep me going through the evening’s revision. My first thought when I tasted it was “Crikey, that’s smooth!” The first cup was smooth and sweet like new-mown hay. I look forward to exploring it further this evening.
With the second cup I just noticed that relaxing feeling that some teas give. Cool! I’m spacing out on my tea, man!! ;) It’s actually like a light version of tea drunk and I really feel it in my legs. Interesting. I had better not get too tea drunk or I won’t be able to focus on my work.
Yi Wu Mountain Bow Village 2013 Organic. This tea has a very similar taste profile to other Yi Wu Mountain cakes: soft, like drinking a cloud. It seems like butter lettuce and celery, very light tannins. The cake is packed sufficiently, neither too tight nor to loose. It has a faint soft floral smell and bears a striking resemblance to the Misty Peaks Spring sample I busted out for my wife’s birthday week.
The liquor has a pale yellow and a v. high clarity. When I hold it in my mouth there’s a metallic zing at the blade of the tongue, where most of the tannins are detected. A patient of mine gave it the big thumbs up, as she likes the teas that possess next to no tannins.
I steeped about 4g at about 175 degrees, starting at 10 seconds the first few rounds. I’m up to about 25 seconds. The color gets more defined but the flavor profile stays the same.