153 Tasting Notes


This was a free sample with my order
Dry – Bitter to bittersweet woody(Tobaccoey?) and floral notes, medicinal, faint tart fruits and some sweetness.
Wet – Very apparent Bitter wood/tobacco notes, some smoke, floral-wood-medicinal and hints of sweetness.
Liquor – Amber

  • 130ml Porcelain Gaiwan +-6gm*

Initial steeps are bitter and harsh up front with apparent tobacco and green wood notes that hints of Chinese medicine and hints of floral notes, all under a noticeable but not unpleasant hint of smoke. There’s some thickness as it goes down and the harshness mellows as it washes away.

By the third maybe fourth steep the Harshness is not as aggressive on the mouth and the thickness seems cumulative and almost tongue numbing, which to me balances in the ‘not sure if I like it’ sensation. The smoke has dissipated for the most part and the medicinal/tobacco notes are very apparent, the Huigan is pleasant and sweet with a herbaceous finish that lingers.

The compression is a bit tight on this one, which is usually bad for a tea this age, luckily the tea is very infusable and the outer layer doesn’t over steep before the piece opens.

Final Notes
At first the tea seemed a bit too harsh with bitter-wood notes (not the pleasant ones). It sort of reminded me of a lower grade version of W2T’s Repave, but missing some of the licorice-medicinal notes and ‘youth’ harshness. The thickness starts weak to medium and pleasant and develops into a numbing sensation that I didn’t really get to appreciate. If you like these notes and like them to last several steeps this cakes holds up well. To it was more pleasant towards the later steeps.

If you have time – Check my Blog

Flavors: Green Wood, Herbaceous, Medicinal, Tobacco

205 °F / 96 °C 6 g 4 OZ / 130 ML

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drank 2014 White2Tea 46&2 by White 2 Tea
153 tasting notes

Dry – Sweet, fruity, refreshing, buttery?, bitter floral and slightly nutty.
Wet – Warm sugar sweetness with very apparent tobacco and some faint smoke, fruits, cream, floral and nutty.
Liquor – Light amber to Amber.

This notes is a summary of two separate sessions in porcelain gaiwan

The first steep in both sessions were sweet and mellow with a fast overtake of the tobacco notes up front. As it went down, the texture was thick/creamy while still wearing the tobacco notes, yet it feels sweeter with fruity and nutty notes.

Following steeps switch to a tobacco front with the sweetness coming in second together with bitter-tobacco and bittersweet floral notes and some nutty and herbaceous hints up front. As it goes down, it has a thick and almost creamy texture, but has some minor astringency to it. The fruity and floral notes a more apparent as the liquor washes down, yet will continue to hold the tobacco notes.

Final steeps are about the same in terms of the notes you find and the order, but much more mellowed down and a refreshing finish easier to detect.

Final Notes

I liked this one, It has strong tobacco notes, but is not overwhelming. I’d say this is definitely stronger than the Repave, but WAY gentler than a Xiaguan the same age would be and has a lasting Huigan.

Flavors: Creamy, Medicinal, Sweet, Tobacco

205 °F / 96 °C 6 g 4 OZ / 130 ML

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Dry – Mellow honey sweetness, creamy, faint floral/fruity notes.
Wet- Honey sweet, floral and fruity notes, some vegetal notes that faintly reminds me of artichoke, cream.
Liquor – Yellow to light amber

The first few steeps are very mellow and gentle in most notes, mostly honeyed sweetness with a very pleasant creamy/buttery body and even taste, it has some vegetal notes in the middle and slowly develops mellow floral and fruity notes that linger.

Following steeps are more apparent in floral and fruity notes, the body keeps being buttery and has some savory notes that are very pleasant and even relaxing. It starts to be less subtle in the vegetal notes and has some astringency, the sweetness stays in the broth, but takes a backseat to the vegetal and very mellow tobacco notes.

Overall a very pleasant and mellow Yiwu Sheng. I forgot to rate this tea a while a go and I found the samples again. This is a great tea if you like Yiwu teas in general or if you enjoy teas with smooth/buttery mouth feel.

Flavors: Butter, Floral, Fruity, Honey, Vegetal


This is my everyday puerh. Very nice stuff.


It is! I have to get me at least one or two of these. Very pleasant and balanced Sheng.


I agree but isn’t the 2013 spring gone now?


:’( What?

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Dry – Sweet, faintly flowery and fruity, refreshing.
Wet – Honeyed sweetness, faint bittersweet floral notes, some thickness, fruity.
Liquor – Golden/Light amber.

The initial cups are sweet that resembles mellow honey and has subtle fruity and floral notes. The body is medium to full, but not the most lasting. I would describe it as being full initially and keeps a medium body as it washes down. The broth is sweet, fruity,floral and mellow with a smooth body and some thickness. The bitterness is very subtle, almost non-existent at this point.

Mid session the liquor has some more floral notes and the sweetness is not as strong as the initial two or three cups. The Honey notes are still there, but take a backseat to the floral that is still gentle and smooth, the liquor maintains a medium body and is mostly smooth with minor astringency appearing at the end of each sip.

The final cups have an initial floral with faded fruity notes and some ‘vegetal’/green notes with some astringency. There’s still sweetness left in the cup, just not as apparent or as forward, but still enjoyable. The tea is holding up pretty well for the age and most of the young notes are herbaceous with astringency.

Final Notes
A very nice tea, specially for the price range. This is a recommended for those who enjoy mellow teas or people still getting used to Puerh. It isn’t flashy, it is subtle and mellow with not much change in the session. The huigan fairly lasting and the final astringency is not overwhelming at all.

Flavors: Floral, Fruity, Honey

205 °F / 96 °C

I have still to order from here. I wish their shipping policies were a little more “set in stone” so I would know what the final tally would be. Maybe we can get them to implement something like this. I love their line up of products. Just wish they had a set price on shipping.


mopar – I can tell you from a recent order that I was charged $20 for EMS shipping for 3 puerh cakes.


Yeah, they have to fix that. My first order wasn’t that bad, but granted it was all samples, except fro one 150gm cake. I’m looking at some others they have and this one to pick up. The price vs quality is great.


$20.00 EMS for 3 I can live with. I have actually paid that on EMS for one. Thanks for the info both of you.


How does this contrast from the Misty Peaks Yiwu you mention above?


Yeah, I don’t think my shipping was over $20.
Yang To me they sound similar on ‘paper’, but hit different spectrum of taste. The NanNuo is very pronounced in honeyed sweetness and fruity notes, some floral with thickness and hay like vegetal notes. Misty Peak’s Yiwu is Honeyed sweet and floral with fruity notes, but they are much more subtle and balanced with the vegetal notes that are more ‘savory’ or even faintly brine-y. I always say that Yiwu has an olive oil or faint artichoke taste in the middle. :)

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Dry – Sweet, malty, chocolate, cream, faint pine-wood.
Wet – Warm sugar, molasses, maple, woody-pine notes, chocolate, spices, hints of cream.
Liquor – Bronze

The first steep is sweet, thick malty, woody with pine notes and hints of chocolate. As it goes down, it maintain its thickness and malty notes with subtle chocolate notes and lasting wood-pine notes.

The following steeps feel more sweet and thicker with very apparent malt notes, wood-pine notes and seems to become almost savory in the middle with a broth like quality. As it goes down, it feels thick again with sweetness, chocolate notes and a roasted note that gives deeper notes of wood and malt.

The final steeps are weaker, but still pleasant with a sweet but cleaner front, apparent malt and wood in the middle with almost no broth-like middle, it is mostly wood-pine like with the chocolate notes now switched to a very subtle roasted cocoa nibs like taste, more bitter to bittersweet side of chocolate notes.

Very pleasant Yunnan Black. I prefer Spring offerings so far. By comparison I’d say that Autumn offerings have a more malty and wood profile and ‘deeper’ perhaps roasted notes, while spring has a lighter yet more complex profile.

Flavors: Brown Sugar, Chocolate, Malt, Molasses, Pine, Wood

Boiling 5 g

I appreciate your comparison of spring vs autumn black teas.


Thanks! I’m looking forward to do it again in a more attentive manner. I find it fun and educational =D

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Dry – Sweet, caramel, chocolate, spice(cinnamon), cream, tart fruity, some mineral oolong notes.
Wet – Very sweet, caramel, floral, cinnamon, creamy, tart fruity, hints of chocolate, more apparent mineral notes.
Liquor – Light-golden to copper – Very aromatic, cinnamon, fruits, caramel, hints of chocolate.

Early steeps are honeyed sweet and tart fruity that resembles caramel, but develops a richer chocolatey character up front. As it goes down, it feels thick and creamy with chocolate and cinnamon notes over a tart and fruity background. A complex and satisfying finish.

Once the tea starts to open it wears the same notes as the initial steeps, but the floral notes take a front seat. The thickness, chocolate and cinnamon notes are still apparent and very pleasant, more mineral/oolong character appears.

Later steeps are mostly tart fruity and floral with mineral oolong notes. The thick/creamy, chocolate and cinnamon notes take a backseat here; they seem muted, but are still present if you pay attention.

Final Notes
This is a very satisfying Oolong, I feel like this outshines the ’Classic Rou Gui" in over all taste and quality and funny enough in the cinnamon aspect.

Flavors: Caramel, Chocolate, Creamy, Floral, Fruity, Mineral, Tart

195 °F / 90 °C 5 g 4 OZ / 130 ML

who needs a dessert, right? goes on my wishlist!

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Dry – A ‘dark’ / roasted sweetness, mineral oolong notes, some wood-spice (Cinnamon? not getting clear Cinnamon notes), Caramel.
Wet – Oolong mineral/rock notes, very floral, wood-spice notes, sweetness that comes from a roasted/dark source not so much line honey.
Liquor – Copper — very aromatic of Wood-spice(Cinnamon), Honey, mineral, floral and roasted sweetness.

This tea is very aromatic, it has very apparent floral-bitter/tart notes that emanate from the cup, sweet mesquite honey notes and finally get an apparent Cinnamon/wood-spice scent followed by the hallmark mineral/rock/hay Oolong notes.

The liquor is fairly smooth but pieces are not uncommon, filter if you don’t want residual astringency, however I feel like this is very pleasant. It wears all of its floral notes well, the Cinnamon character is lacking in my opinion; mostly caramel sweetness with floral and mineral. As it goes down some more of the wood-spice notes come forward and after a while the Cinnamon is more clear. This is definitely a tea to keep at work, I’ve done very short steeps and some a bit longer and the taste barely changes. It doesn’t endure much in western cup style, I’d stick to using portable Gong Fu methods, and enjoy 3-5 good cups.

Nothing too special. A great cup of work, the aroma is VERY enjoyable, definitely its best trait.

Flavors: Caramel, Floral, Mineral, Wood

195 °F / 90 °C 5 g 6 OZ / 170 ML

Thank you for reviewing this tea. i bought it but wasnt able to sample it. Im at my summer house now. But i tried Jing Tea shop version. it was very good but i dont think it was rich enough. JTS is medium roasted. Is YS heavy roasted?


I think this one is medium roasted, but think in the higher range of what you consider medium roast. There’s still some dark green color in the leaves, but not much cinnamon taste, it is mostly in the aftertaste. I bought a bag of this and Scott sent me sample of another Oolong which in my opinion knocks this one out of the table. I’ll update once I get home and let you know the name of that one in case you want to sample it. :)


Pls do. BTW have you tried that Ya Shi Xiang Dan Cong (duck shit). name is just gross. i wonder if its good.


LOL! I haven’t. I want to try it, but I have to wait until my next tea order. I find the name funny, and wonder if it does indeed smell like Duck shit. I used to visit a farming family as a little kid and I know the scent.


I’m in Pocono,PA now. We have ducks in the lake and everywhere. and in a pool which is annoying. I wouldn’t want my kids to swim in duck poop. I don’t mind looking at them from a distance.


The other Oolong Scott sent me was 2013 Spring AA Grade “Hua Xiang Shui Xian”. I feel like this one is a step up to the Classic Rou Gui.


thanks, will put it on wishlist ;)

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drank 2007 White2Tea Repave by White 2 Tea
153 tasting notes

Dry – Bitter-tobacco/wood notes, bittersweet floral notes
Wet – Bitter-tobacco/wood notes, bitter floral, bittersweet fruit and hints of sweetness and tangy notes.
Liquor – Amber to copper.
Gongfu in Porcelain lined Yixing Gaiwan 130ml

The first two steeps had a savory front with tangy and bittersweet floral notes over the gentle tobacco background. As it washed down if feels smooth and has an almost oily texture that coats the tongue with mellow bitter floral notes and faint smoke.

Following steeps are more open and forward but continue to be mellow in character. The front is savory with smoky, bitter-wood/tobacco notes adn floral bitter-sweetness. As it goes down, it continues to coat the tongue with a lightly oily texture that feel smooth, but has a more apparent bitter-tobacco/wood and floral notes, that although more apparent are still somehow gentle.

Later steeps (past 8th-10th) are more faded, but still echo the characteristics of this tea. Most of the notes are cumulative so the tobacco and floral notes and faint smoke linger in the back of the tongue and throat. The huigan is fairly fast yet mellow in taste. Cha qi is present as a warming sentation.

A nice tea, I insist that this to me echos a very gentle Xiaguan or what a Xiaguan/Yiwu blend would taste like in my mind.

Flavors: Floral, Sweet, Tangy, Tobacco

205 °F / 96 °C 7 g 4 OZ / 130 ML

I liked this one pretty well.


it is pretty good. Gentler than I anticipated it would be.

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Dry – Sweet, earthy notes, somewhat creamy, dates, starch/rice.
Wet – Creamy, earthy, light spice/pepper, dry dark fruits, dates, yeasty, bitter cocoa?
Liquor – Burgundy to Red-ish brown.

1st 5secs Thick, tart, partly, fruity and some smoke?(roasted cocoa/coffee) notes up front. As it goes down, it has an apparent savory, brothy and filling body with some pepper-wood notes and a sweet and bitter-chocolate finish.

2nd 5secs First Sweet, thick, tart, earthy, creamy with light pepper notes and smoke?/roasted cocoa-coffee notes up front. As it goes down it has an initial sweetness, but a brothy and savory character is dominant. The finish is sweeter with tart/bittersweet cocoa notes.

3rd 7secs Sweet, thick, earthy, creamy, slightly tart with dark fruit notes, and faint roasted-cocoa/coffee? notes up front. As it goes down, it has some savory notes the dominate for a bit, but turns sweet again with spice and camphor and a sweet finish that has bittersweet cocoa notes.

7-8 steeps in total The steeps start collapsing at the 5th-6th and after that they are mostly sweet with minor tart notes and faded complexity. You can allow it to rest for a few hours or a day and push an extra one or two, but they are still weak.

FInal Notes
After the Feng Ling pot this one is more than welcomed. I feel like this one has some complexity and depth to it, which it is rare in Shou in general. It is in the between the lines of an amazing every day Shou or a good occasional treat.

Flavors: Creamy, Dark Bittersweet, Dates, Earth, Rice, Sweet, Thick


I officially want to drink this! LOL


I can send you some later. I’ve been really busy lately, but I can me up some time later :)


OK. Thank you :)

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Ceramic Pot Puerh – Feng Ling Tea Factory, April 2000 100gm

Dry – Earth, Clay, Wood, Sweet.
Wet – Sweet, wood and earthy.
Liquor – dark brown almost black.

1st 5secs- Earthy, tart-bitter wood notes, talc/starchy and some clay notes up front. As it goes down, it feels starchy like talc and somewhat sweet, but flat at the end.

2nd 5secs – Think earthy, woody, some spiciness, starsh/talc sensation on the tongue and some sweet up front. As it goes down, it has some earthy wood notes and sweet finish. This steep has more live than the first one.

3rd 7secs – Thick earthy, woody, more apparent spicy middle with a starsh/talc sensation up front. As it goes down, it holds its earthy and wood notes while slowly developing sweetness that linger in the finish.

Quick wrap up
This one wasn’t a hit with me. I feel like people who enjoy imperial Loose Puerh and other traditional high fermentation ripes will get a better time out of this one. I will re-visit this one when I’m more in a Shou mood.

Flavors: Clay, Earth, Sweet, Wood

Boiling 6 g 4 OZ / 130 ML

It seems that the majority of pu’erh consumers feel that The Phoenix Collection is bad and not good. What’s your opinion on them?


VERY honestly, I like David Hoffman, humble and nice guy. But it is a hit or miss. He does have some really good ones, but some that I’d rather not go back to. Although, some people can appreciate those. I’ve found well stored ones, but some that have been in obvious wet storage, which isn’t bad (there’s people who love them) but it would be nice before you put the money in.


Seems like I should steer clear, I dislike humid storage. He seems to be a super inaccessible vendor, as his lowest amt for loose teas is 4oz and puerh is generally 1 cake minimum, and he barely describes them (I can’t even tell if it’s ripe or raw!)


Ex. REally good Shou : Tibetan Brick High grade, Lao Ban Zhang Ripe, Beencha Puerh, Vietnam Been Cha, Lancang/Simao/Mensong Loose Leaf from old trees(although wierd looking). Shou I didn’t like : Tibetan Brick Standard grade (basically heicha), Yunnan Been Cha, The other Large Leaf from old trees ripes, everyday shou(blehh). I can do the same for the Sheng.


I generally dislike Shou, it’s just repulsive to me, like wet-stored teas of any kind. Something about the aroma. I drank nice shou as well, I’ve tried a CNNP, a Yunnan Sourcing, and a mini-coin. I got the same vibe from a wet-stored aged Sun Moon Lake black tea.

A dry-stored sheng though, that’s gooooood.


If you don’t like to talk to people stick to other vendors. I spoke to him about it, the thing is that he is mostly a whole seller so he has no need to advertise or market his Puerh, usually people go to tastings and buy on buy/order on the spot. I’m interested in visiting sometime. He has several old Puerh that is not even listed and some have been pleasant. But if you want to make sure every single is a hit, I’d advice staying with guys like Tea Urchin, White2Dog and other curators that don’t do much wholesales and describe a more limited catalog. :)


yeah I was chatting with a Taiwanese Oolong wholesaler today, quite a nice selection. I e-mailed them with a question a while back, and they responded instantly. However, the lack of flexibility of sampling turns me off. I’m ordering with White2Tea very soon, actually.


I’d recommend White2Dog. Paul has been very attentive and the tea has been as advertised. And I have to say, I feel you about sampling. I usually do research before buying anything and Puerh is not the exception. With Phoenix Collection it was a must because the information is limited. If lived in CA I would visit and taste on spot… I wish I could do that in all places actually LOL.


I haven’t tried Paul’s teas yet, but I’ve spoken to him a bit and he’s been great to talk to. Next month (which is in 8 minutes) I’m ordering from him.


Not a fan of this tea either


Sam, I haven’t been much into Shou lately, but this one added the extra ‘clay’ and wood that I didn’t get too much into lol.

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Discovered tea a few years ago and I’ve been exploring ever since. I’m looking forward to keep learning and enjoy tea as I do. Keep learning, those who “know” stop learning and become irrelevant to the world.

I’m adding the scale because I noted that we all use the same system but it doesn’t mean the same to all.(I rate the tea not by how much I ‘like it’ only; there are flavors/scents I don’t like but they are quality and are how they are supposed to be and I rate them as such).

90 – 100: AMAZING. This the tea I feel you should drop whatever you are doing and just enjoy.

80-89: Great tea that I would recommend because they are above ‘average’ tea, they usually posses that ‘something’ extra that separates them from the rest.

70-79: An OK tea, still good quality, taste and smell. For me usually the tea that I have at work for everyday use but I can still appreciate and get me going through my day.

60-69: Average nothing special and quality is not high. The tea you make and don’t worry about the EXACT time of steep because you just want tea.

30-59: The tea you should probably avoid, the tea that you can mostly use for iced tea and ‘hide’ what you don’t like.

1-29: Caveat emptor! I feel sorry for my enemies when they drink this tea. :P





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