Experimental-Pressing Yue Guang Bai

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From Verdant Tea (Special)

Tea of the Month Reserve Club: December

At a tea conference in Qingdao I had the opportunity to meet two young brothers from Yunnan who own a small tea business picking yue guang bai (moonlight white) and traitional (da bai) white tea and pressing cakes for aging. This year they tried taking an earlier spring picking and pressing chocolate bar cubes for a very interesting sweet and tangy flavor. The taste is a cross between dark tea (fucha) and Bai Mudan white. I really wanted to support their innovation, so I bought all the new pressing that they had. Since this tea was more affordable buying it new directly from the farmers, I included double the normal quantity, to give you plenty of chances to try it out.
Steeping Tips: Use half of a cube in a four to six oz vessel. Do one rinse with fresh filtered boiling water and then infuse for 6 – 8 seconds per steeping. Steep at least 10 times.

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7 Tasting Notes

3254 tasting notes

It’s been a long day. Suffice it to say that I slammed down a cup of Assam, left the house early & had breakfast with my 2nd daughter (the breakfast was awesome!), then spent hours at the courthouse on the first day of what is probably going to be a very ugly & expensive custody battle between her & the father of her son. Now I’m home, & I wanted something soothing, something special, this!

Dry, it’s interesting looking little blocks, with multishaded layers of sage, cream, white, black, & gray. The dry aroma is rich, & it took me a few sessions with this tea to identify the very familiar aroma: A very fresh goatmilk. A long time ago I raised goats, & when goats milk is good, it is really really good, but sadly, it is very susceptible to aromas, & also can spoil quickly, so it is best when it is very fresh.

The wet aroma was of malt & canned condensed milk!
I steeped 1/2 cube + 4oz gaiwan (rinse) X 6 sec, then 8, 10, 12, 15, 18, 21, 24, 27, 30, 35

The color is a beautiful amber Honey.
The flavors: fresh cream, malt, hint of vanilla, & a gentle fruity sweetness. It is delicious! I usually go for teas that are more assertive, but the richness & creaminess of this tea makes it very satisfying!
I hope that David gets more of this someday. I’ll buy it!


I hope your court drama works out well! :( These things can be so stressful, it is wonderful that you are helping your daughter through it. Sending out good thoughts for the both of you!


This is so pretty like a jewel.

Terri HarpLady

Thanks Alpha! It’s going to be an ongoing thing, probably lasting for months. He’s determined to make it as ugly, difficult, & expensive as possible. Today was just day 1…

Bonnie, you are so right! I love the way these little cubes look, & it’s such a soothing tea!

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676 tasting notes

Thank you Invader Zim for this wonderful tea gift sample!

I saved this ‘Experimental Pressing Sample’ that Invader Zim shared with me from her Tea Club offering for tonight, New Year’s Eve!
(If I saved every tea to drink on special occasions that I’ve received from friends here on Steepster, each day would have to be a Holiday!)

Steepster people are the BEST!

The little cube of pressed Pu’er is beautiful. It looks like a jewel. You really can’t tell from the picture, but there’s a sheen…a brilliance that I’ve never seen before as though delicate silk threads are woven into the leaves.

My instructions were to use half the small square jewel, boiling water…1 rinse and then steep 6-8 seconds in 4 oz. water multiple times.

The aroma after the rinse was different than any Pu’er I’ve had before. It smelled like a light black tea with honey and malt and no aroma of typical earthy Pu’er. This was altogether peculiar.

The liquor was pure bright gold, which sparkled in my glass mug. (It’s worth it to have clear glass to see the color on this tea!)

My first sip was sweet and juicy, more like a light Nepalese Black Tea with a hint of Darjeeling than Pu’er. Brisk and clean, not astringent or dry.
How could this be a Pu-er? I’d never tasted anything like this before. No earthiness! No barn or stable, no mushrooms, cedar, bread or cake. What was this all about?

The second steep revealed raw sugar crystals…the kind I sometimes don’t put into my tea but just pop into my mouth like little candies with their faint taste of molasses. Smooth, clean and lovely tasting.

For the third pour I added a few seconds on the steep time and thought there was a fruity flavor, very faint but there. I couldn’t figure out what it was because every time I went… “That’s the one!”, it was too strong. Not peach, apricot or any other flavor, so…I changed my mind. I concluded that the taste was honey/agave. Mixed together agave reduces the honey taste which is what I imagined tasting this delicate tea.

As I was pouring the 4th steep into my glass, I was mumbling to myself…“What’s the fruit flavor in this tea, something is in there, I know it from somewhere?”

I was turning to sit at the table where I was making my notes…and the answer came to my mind.

“Ripe…yellow Golden Delicious Apple Pulp!” Just like that.

That was it! These sweet apples grew outside my bedroom window in California from age 7-20. A dwarf golden tree that spread out branches horizontally and had to be propped up on stakes because there were so many apples. I had eaten my share of sweet, warm fleshed goodness and this Pu-er tasted remarkably like them.
Other apples are tart and may have tart skins but not these apples. Everything is sweet like candy and juicy. The sunshine comes inside to such an extent that you can almost hand-squeeze the apple juice out of them. Nothing in the stores can compare with these lovelies.

(If you’re not familiar with this taste, it’s a bit like the flesh of a sweet Bosc Pear).

To be more certain, I added a few grains of sugar and the tea flavor didn’t turn into caramel. It stayed apple.

This is a unique and absolutely outstanding Pu’er!

Personal Note
The Best Thing to happen to me in many years has been finding the people here on Steepster!
I am amazed at how generous and caring everyone is!
If I were able to do it, I’d rent a resort and fly everyone in for
a vacation where we could all share tea and good food. You are the
best and I couldn’t be more proud or humbled to be a part of such
a place as this.

Thank you to the creators of Steepster!

With Great Affection for All of You, Happy New Year!

http://youtu.be/STqDowSbSTQ Auld Lang Syne on Bagpipes (What can I say, I’m a Scot)


Thank you for this wonderful note Bonnie. :)

Hesper June

Happy New Year, Bonnie!


Gracias! Prospero Ano Nuevo!


I love your personal note and couldn’t agree more. Happy New Year, Bonnie! :)


apple pu-erh, sounds incredible!!
Happy New Year Bonnie. I love that you are one of the amazing people on Steepster!!


Shucks, too nice. Not just any apple, that specific kind. Do you get them in Canada? Thin skins, light yellow all over and taste like nectar? Juicy? Not tart at all.


we have something similar here. reminds me of honey crisp


I am so intrigued…I missed this on the Verdant site and yet I’m so tickled you were able to find it an it inspired such a wonderful blushing set of words… I wish you the best in this new solar year and may the dragon change into the snake with equal fortune…


Kashyap, this was a special reserve tea club offering and a member of the club shared some of theirs with me. I wish you the best.


Thank you for these heartfelt words Bonnie…I know I’m a little late on this one, but I also wish you and all the steepster community a Happy new year!
P.S. Your Steepsterites group vacation could be lots of fun! I’m thinking «tea bar resort», unlimited «drinks» included of course!

Invader Zim

I hope you had a great New Year’s Day Bonnie, and I hope you are enjoying all your tea gifts from everyone! I’m glad you liked this and I was happy to share it with you, that’s what Steepster is all about!


I even took a little bit to Happy Lucky’s to have Eric taste it because he’s such a guru who loves Pu-erh and a science teacher at the local Jr. College. He was intrigued by the sweet taste until I told him what the tea was and it made more sense. Such a fun experience.


I have high hopes of Davind putting it on regular sale since he did double the amount of the sample “because buying directly from farmers turned out to be cheaper” I so hope to buy this on a regular basis…


Me too!

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93 tasting notes

Really nice. I already love Yue Guang Bai but the type I am used to is a bit rough. As in – quite nice but not exactly perfect as you always feel that the taste is slightly over the top and just a little less of whatever that is will only make it better.

Which is exactly the case with this pressing – sweet and refined but not overly strong. I love it. I hope David finds enough of this to sell on the site normally.

And, oh, does it resteep… >_< I went up to maybe 10th or more

Terri HarpLady

I enjoyed this too!

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