9 Tasting Notes
(short version of the longer review on my blog)
First i thought the leaves still need some time to open up etc.
I found this tea boring than… i hoped for more aroma… more than just dry earth … but from brew to brew, i got more familiar with this earthy flavor. There is 0% of anything that is not tasting well… but there is no good deal more of anything else… mhmm.
Wait, there is! There is a lot of Cha Qi things going on… heartbeat-rate, sweating, “opening up feeling between my eyes”, much much more awake…
… and it has a good mouthfeel.
Not really any sweetness, not really any bitterness… at the same time, not thin… as i mentioned before: like very dry earth.
All together, the (well tasting!) dry earth aroma, the strangeness of this tea, the Cha Qi, the mouthfeel… i did actually enjoyed the session, but i would not recommend this tea right away.
This tea is quite complex, and it is changing quite interesting from round to round.
Where i live the autumn season begins at the moment, and the color and the taste is fitting very well. I even taste some withered leaves or foliage in it, but that might be a psychological thing… with all those beautiful leaves in our garden.
I guess this one is a good example for a semiaged tea. I like to drink it now and enjoy it, but i guess for some people it could be “neither fish nor fowl” … it is far away from young sheng and at the same time it has some foliage taste wich is, what i guess, a sign of a not “fully” (or just more) aged tea.
Sidenote: i know people differ on the question what a “fully aged” tea is very much, some say 30 years, some say 14 or 20+ … etc., so i use this term with all that caution.
So the first 2 infusions had quite a obvious smoke hint underlying… but it was more a hint… and not very intense. A fine sort of smoke, like from well prepared smoked meat.
The mouthfeel is good, quite viscous, also not extremely, just good. I like the balance (again) here: a bit of brown sugar (or even dates?) in the back, quite, but not too much, astringency and a bit of bitterness that comes along with some tastes of: conifer resin, juniper berries, a little bit of this “old book” taste…
After the first 3 rounds it get`s even much sweeter without loosing the other complex aromas… good.
Flavors: Brown Sugar, Dates, Fir, Resin, Smoke
If you have no problem with a little bit of wet storage aroma, and like a clean & tasty aged tea, this could be it. What this tea does not have, and probably that`s why it is still kind of very affordable for a 16 years old Yiwu: no high tones of dried fruits or in any way very complex aroma nuances and not a very good mouthfeel (it is rather thin).
But I would definitely not call this tea boring or flat, or not complex at all… it is just what it is, good aged well tasting tea, without aroma explosions or any super-special sensation.
Flavors: Almond, Coffee, Leather, Molasses, Wet Earth
A very good tea. One of my most favorite young sheng`s ever. It has strong charakter and at the same time it is very pleasant on the tounge and in the mouth, no aggressive or too bitter notes… there are a lot of things to taste here.
I found some plum and almond… but i guess one can atribute many many aromas to this complex, strong but still kind of round tea.
Flavors: Almond, Butter, Plum
This tea has the right balance between a very dry bitterness and a nice mellow warm sweetness, very earthy … some dried red fruits like cherry… good tea.
Flavors: Cherry, Cranberry, Dark Bittersweet, Dried Fruit, Earth
I never drank such a well balanced tea before.
A very complex sweetness with a lot of nuances. The bitterness ist really perfectly in sync with the sweetness. Everything is at the right place. Wow!
1. 90°C 20 Seconds
2. 95°C 30 Seconds
3. 95°C 45 Seconds
4. 95°C 60 Seconds
5. 95°C 70 Seconds
(Yes, i`m tea drunk… and in (deep) love with this tea)
Flavors: Almond, Caramel, Dried Fruit, Melon, Orange Zest, Peach, Saffron
I think this is the first (or second) “wet” (or “traditional”) stored sheng that i ever tried.
The wet storage aroma is something i had to adapt to… i think the 5th steeping was a moment where i really forgot about it or let`s say rather began to like the whole flavor spectrum with this “wet store aroma” included as one essential part of it.
I really liked the effect the tea had on me on a psychological level.
This aged bookish taste… it made me really thoughtful and kind of serious. ;-)
I would only recommend this tea to people who want to find out about more “wet stored” teas… or are already familiar with them.
Flavors: Anise, Char, Dried Fruit, Forest Floor, Tobacco
This tea has a very thick and creamy mouthfeel. It somehow seals my throat… very very gluey (and i like that). This tea is very sweet, with honey aroma… i thought i even taste some vanilla. It has a powerful elegant deepness in it`s rich sweet flavors.
But, for my taste i would wish for a little bit (more, there is just very little) bitterness….
Yes i love young sweet Sheng / Raw Puerh … but this is very sweet and could have some more bitterness to make it just perfect…
But, who wants a perfect world?! :-) The tea is already very good as it is.
Flavors: Apricot, Candy, Honey, Honey Dew, Vanilla