Xing Hai Tea Factory MenghaiEdit Company
Popular Teas from Xing Hai Tea Factory MenghaiSee All 6 Teas
Recent Tasting Notes
This has a very bold, unique aroma. Somehow nostalgic, reminds me of a childhood playing in funky-smelling canal water in the tropics.
Strong, slightly bitter earthy mushroom Pu Er taste, pretty mild / blunt and smooth. Unfortunately, it’s not for me but I’m glad I got to sample it. Worth trying once for Pu Er enthusiasts just in case it might be up your alley.
In continuing to play the field of producers, I settled on a Xing Hai brick from Bulang, which the seller says was comprised of 3-5 grade leaves and possesses “some smokiness” that dissipates after the fifth infusion. Ahem. Xing Hai started up in the early part of the century and won the coveted “Pu’er King” (ripe) award at the Annual International Tea Expo in Guan Dong.
As with many raw bricks you need a chisel to break the leaves apart. I threw about 6g of shavings into my 120ml gaiwan and got to werk, infusing for about 20s the first time and aroud 15 the next few infusions. The liquor is a solid goldenrod. The broth, true to the sellers confessions, is thick. The taste is true Bulang: in your face big instruments played loudly in a French cafe where everyone chain smokes… and then they smoke some more. This is the smokiest offering I’ve ever had. It doesn’t drown out the pronounced sweetness, but it certainly doesn’t play second saxophone either. The astringency, of which there is a bit, comes as a welcome counterpoint to such a voluble ensemble. Ten infusions in the smoke still lingered, even as the liquor faded to a pale yellow. This brick is a real contrast, if a bit jarring, to the Jing-mai, Xi-gui, and Yi-bang I’ve been gulping down of late. Anyone into lapsang suchong would love this is my guess.
I’ve become a little obsessed with pu-erh lately and spend way too much time looking at pictures of beengs and bricks on the internet. I need to drink more of what I have before getting more :)
In any case I discovered the best steeping time for this brick is 195 F for around 60 seconds. see my previous notes… still love it
I accidentally let this steep for too long, it went to 2 minutes or more. Now it is very strong! Reminds me a bit of coffee, dark, robust but still drinkable. Smells awesome and is very woodsy but a tad bit too strong for me here. Good lesson learned – do not oversteep pu-erh! :)
I am drinking this again today. It really is one of the best shus I have had. I think pu-erhs are so specific to the individual that is drinking them. I upped the rating a point. I was feeling guilty for spending $25 on the brick but that will last a while and I really like it, so whatever. I am lucky to live in a place that has so many tea shops.
I can’t seem to find a picture of this on the internet anywhere – sorry
My guy was very excited when he discovered a new tea shop in his neighborhood recently We popped on over there this afternoon and discovered this. A shu pu-erh tea brick from the Xinghai Tea factory, the Label says Gold Brick. The back of the box says 1998.
The lady who gave us this tasting was very energetic and enthusiastic about the world of tea. We also tried a Chinese green tea that was very flavorful. I did take good mental notes on how she brewed this stuff, very gently. It’s a very sweet, dark red creamy cup. Probably one of the sweeter pu-erhs I have had. It does smell a tad fishy/mushroomy etc but tastes like cherries, vanilla and honey. Redwood trees and bark. When we took this brick home I brewed some up in the Tetsubin. This is another disaster when steeped for too long and a little bit can make a huge difference. I tried it for two minutes and the result was a bitter, thickish mess that I had to throw out. I would suggest one minute or less for the first steep and nice little short infusions for 30 -45 seconds after that seem to be doing the trick very well here. A delicious tea perfect for drinking now. yummmy.
I will try to save some for the future too.