92

Wow, this is a wonderful shu. I wasn’t completely sure about it based on its slightly muddy appearance and not having heard of Yong De, but seeing it described as a favorite by both Garret at Mandala and (different year’s pressing) by Scott at Yunnan Sourcing, I figured a 1oz sample was certainly worth a try. And it was.

Dry leaves: The leaves are slightly larger than the Menghai pu’s I’ve tried, and are a warm, chocolaty brown in color. The smell is deep and rich, but I have trouble identifying any one note.

Early infusions: The first thing that strikes me in tasting is a sort of marshmallow “puffiness” to the liquer. Even in the first steeping there is no noticeable “off” taste. The tea is remarkably smooth and has a deep woodiness with a pleasant zuchini-like flavor.

Middle Infusions: Around the fifth infusion, the tea starts to open up in flavor with notes of saffron, sea breeze, and cantaloupe. The flavor is woodsy like dry fall leaves.

Later infusions: Around the tenth infusion, when the tea begins to be weaker, the flavors become more sweet and subtle. It has a slight vanilla sweetness, and flavors like a dense sourdough bread. The flavor is very clean, almost like a Yunnan black tea.

This is my new favorite pu’erh, very smooth, clean, and deep. A full cake of it has jumped to the top of my shopping list :)

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec
Garret

I read this review and marched immediately back to our pu’er storage vault and pulled out one of these cakes. I love this tea. It’ll be out for us to prepare here at the tea shop for the next few days, for sure. I’m so happy that you are enjoying this tea, my friend! It’s a winner. I can’t wait for you to try the Noble Mark sample that I sent you. It is a blend I created from Yong De area where I was there in April. While very young, I think you will enjoy it. I don’t just buy 200 + lbs of tea if I don’t think it’s going to age well :) Thanks for the review!

Garret

Went back and counted inventory on this cake. 9 left. One will be snapped up by yours truly, and my partner just said he wants one, too. Our session with it here is going very well :)

tperez

Eek, I guess that means I need to order one soon! I’m very excited to try the Noble Mark, I think I’ll brew some up tomorrow :)

Garret

I’m working on securing some more of them, but so far none of my connections there can find it. I’ll be back in SW China soon enough. I’ll see if I can find some then!

mrmopar

sorry garret, i think you will soon only have 6 left i think!

mrmopar

oh i am going to be shot for this…..

ashmanra

Mrmopar! Did you buy all the rest of the tea? LOL!

Garret

Huh… that’s funny… all of the sudden the stock is down to 6 :) I am glad you are going to try that Noble Mark, too!!!! Along with that loose tea, I’ll send you a sample of the cake I had pressed of it, too. Still waiting for the remaining 320 to get here so I can put them up on the site!

mrmopar

no i just grabbed one and a noble mark sample. garret thanks in advance for the sample of the pressed cake! mr tperez and i have very similar tastes on our pu-erh( he.. he.. i think i got him hooked on it.) thanks and best wishes always!

tperez

I know where you live Mr. M!!! ;D

mrmopar

ha ha stop by any time and i will share tea with you! your choice, oh the discussions we could have about pu-erh…….

tperez

Haha, well I’d be glad to take you up on that offer some day

mrmopar

anytime, you are always welcome here.

Terri HarpLady

You guys are a bad influence on me…or maybe you’re a good influence on me…le’ts just say I just kind of went crazy & placed my first Mandala order…finally!

mrmopar

Terri, you will not be disappointed with that purchase!

ashmanra

Go, Terri!

Claire

Terri, I can’t wait to hear what you got!

Garret

Hey y’all! Can we possibly get any groovier people on this thread?? :) Terri and John, your orders just got picked up!!! They are on their way to your wonderful selves!

Terri HarpLady

Yay!! More and more tea! Claire, after perusing various people’s comments about various teas, I kind of went overboard & got the following:
Phatty cake 11
Yong De 07
Menghai dayi red rhyme 08
Menghai “Zi Yun” Ripe Pu-erh tea (purple rhyme) 09
& a sample of Noble Mark
Now I have to figure out where to keep it all! Some day when I get old & pass away, my kids will be going through my stuff & it will be like one of those Hoarders reality shows, with cakes & tins of tea everywhere!

Claire

I am so excited to read those reviews! I have to wait until the end of this month to get more tea and I swear, a month has never seemed longer! XD

Terri HarpLady

Need I mention that I have a tendency to contemplate at great length before I buy anything, & then all hell breaks loose…obsessive-compulsive-addictive

mrmopar

oohh Terri the red rhyme is great ,the purple rhyme is too and the phatty cake you will like as well! congrats on you getting a great selection. Garret can’t wait to get it in!

Terri HarpLady

I’m super excited!
Sadly, one can only sample so many teas in a day…

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Comments

Garret

I read this review and marched immediately back to our pu’er storage vault and pulled out one of these cakes. I love this tea. It’ll be out for us to prepare here at the tea shop for the next few days, for sure. I’m so happy that you are enjoying this tea, my friend! It’s a winner. I can’t wait for you to try the Noble Mark sample that I sent you. It is a blend I created from Yong De area where I was there in April. While very young, I think you will enjoy it. I don’t just buy 200 + lbs of tea if I don’t think it’s going to age well :) Thanks for the review!

Garret

Went back and counted inventory on this cake. 9 left. One will be snapped up by yours truly, and my partner just said he wants one, too. Our session with it here is going very well :)

tperez

Eek, I guess that means I need to order one soon! I’m very excited to try the Noble Mark, I think I’ll brew some up tomorrow :)

Garret

I’m working on securing some more of them, but so far none of my connections there can find it. I’ll be back in SW China soon enough. I’ll see if I can find some then!

mrmopar

sorry garret, i think you will soon only have 6 left i think!

mrmopar

oh i am going to be shot for this…..

ashmanra

Mrmopar! Did you buy all the rest of the tea? LOL!

Garret

Huh… that’s funny… all of the sudden the stock is down to 6 :) I am glad you are going to try that Noble Mark, too!!!! Along with that loose tea, I’ll send you a sample of the cake I had pressed of it, too. Still waiting for the remaining 320 to get here so I can put them up on the site!

mrmopar

no i just grabbed one and a noble mark sample. garret thanks in advance for the sample of the pressed cake! mr tperez and i have very similar tastes on our pu-erh( he.. he.. i think i got him hooked on it.) thanks and best wishes always!

tperez

I know where you live Mr. M!!! ;D

mrmopar

ha ha stop by any time and i will share tea with you! your choice, oh the discussions we could have about pu-erh…….

tperez

Haha, well I’d be glad to take you up on that offer some day

mrmopar

anytime, you are always welcome here.

Terri HarpLady

You guys are a bad influence on me…or maybe you’re a good influence on me…le’ts just say I just kind of went crazy & placed my first Mandala order…finally!

mrmopar

Terri, you will not be disappointed with that purchase!

ashmanra

Go, Terri!

Claire

Terri, I can’t wait to hear what you got!

Garret

Hey y’all! Can we possibly get any groovier people on this thread?? :) Terri and John, your orders just got picked up!!! They are on their way to your wonderful selves!

Terri HarpLady

Yay!! More and more tea! Claire, after perusing various people’s comments about various teas, I kind of went overboard & got the following:
Phatty cake 11
Yong De 07
Menghai dayi red rhyme 08
Menghai “Zi Yun” Ripe Pu-erh tea (purple rhyme) 09
& a sample of Noble Mark
Now I have to figure out where to keep it all! Some day when I get old & pass away, my kids will be going through my stuff & it will be like one of those Hoarders reality shows, with cakes & tins of tea everywhere!

Claire

I am so excited to read those reviews! I have to wait until the end of this month to get more tea and I swear, a month has never seemed longer! XD

Terri HarpLady

Need I mention that I have a tendency to contemplate at great length before I buy anything, & then all hell breaks loose…obsessive-compulsive-addictive

mrmopar

oohh Terri the red rhyme is great ,the purple rhyme is too and the phatty cake you will like as well! congrats on you getting a great selection. Garret can’t wait to get it in!

Terri HarpLady

I’m super excited!
Sadly, one can only sample so many teas in a day…

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Profile

Bio

My name is Thomas,

Long-time tea and coffee driker, but I only started getting into the world of good quality teas about three years ago.

My favorites right now are pu’erhs, Yunnan blacks, and Taiwanese oolongs. I’m not much into flavored teas, and jasmine almost always puts me off, but I love a good cup of chai or adding a spice or two to my teas sometimes.

I’m 21 and currently working in Orlando Florida, taking a some time off from school to try and figure out my place in the world.

I’m a music lover and have played guitar and violin for quite a while in classical styles, rock, jazz, etc., and have also learned to love the sounds of the sitar and hindustani music in all its forms. I’ve become a bit of a guitar “grease monkey” and find building, modification, repair, and dissection to be even better than playing sometimes.

I also love hiking/camping and downhill longboarding when I have the time to make it out to somewhere hilly.

My Rating Scale:
95-100 Wowza!
90-94 Pretty darn good
80-89 Nice
70-79 Decent
50-69 Potable
0-50: Blech.

Location

Orlando, FL

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