Yang Qing HaoEdit Company
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Recent Tasting Notes
Unsure what I was getting myself into: The long awaited YQH tasting has come.
Not knowing a thing about this tea, I went right into it. Within 11 steeps I had my thoughts collected and went another 6 steeps with no changes on those thoughts.
This tea brews easily which is a plus, but within the ability to brew it easily with no disappointment coming from astringency or bitterness there seems to lack depth. This tea hits the tongue and ends in a rather flat manner; therefore I can’t say there is a body to note about this tea. The taste is on the mild side, appealing to my personal preference, with a mellow color.
Reading about ‘gushu’ vs fake ‘gushu’, I was really looking forward to this tea and my conclusions were leading me to conclude that I was let down by this. There are many teas out there that slide off the tongue with pleasant flavor, but without a body or lingering qi… I really have no idea what would set this apart. I do have two or three more YQH samples to go through and each should be a step up from the one prior to it.
This tea was good, at least I enjoyed it. It started off with notes of tobacco and perhaps leather. These didn’t last and were replaced by another aged note that was still a little unpleasant. This note (I’m not sure how to describe it) lasted another four or five steeps. This was replaced by a sweet note of sorts. Not apricot sweetness like a young sheng but a more subdued sweetness. It became very smooth. There was a certain bitterness throughout the steeps too. There was no note of wet storage. I think the storage of this brick was very clean. The main question is this worth the price? Because of the fact that I split this three ways and mailed off two big chunks of it today I would say yes. My first impulse is to say I wouldn’t get myself a whole brick of this in the next group order but who knows what I’ll think after I drink this again. I gave this tea fifteen steeps and stopped at that. I think it would have gone another five or six steeps. I don’t know if I will save the leaves for tomorrow or later today, I may. This tea has some qi to it. It is not a massive qi but I am definitely feeling it now, quite energizing.
I steeped this tea fifteen times in a 60ml gaiwan with 4.5g leaf and boiling water. I gave it a 10 second rinse and a 10 minute rest. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, 30 sec, 45 sec, 1 min, 1.5 min, 2 min, 2.5 min, 3 min, and 3.5 min.
Flavors: Bitter, Leather, Sweet, Tobacco
This tea is in my opinion quite good. It ought to be for what it cost. It started out with what I would describe as notes of hay and tobacco. This lasted maybe two steeps and another taste emerged. It became quite smooth and in its own way quite sweet. Not mind you the apricot sweetness of a young sheng but something I am not sure I have tasted before, a sweetness with an aged flavor. It did not develop any of what I call unpleasant aged flavor that I have tasted in many ten year old sheng. There was no taste of wet storage. This tea must have been stored quite cleanly for it did not seem to develop any storage taste. As to qi, I am really feeling it. I am energized after fifteen steeps in my small 60ml gaiwan. I will most likely save the leaves and continue tomorrow because the leaves are not done and this was expensive. This tea rates a 100% for it’s qi and a 90% for its taste. I have enjoyed this immensely.
I steeped this tea 15 times in a 60ml gaiwan with 4.4g leaf and boiling water. I gave it a 10 second rinse and a 10 minute rest. I steeped it for 5 sec, 5 sec, 7 sec, 10 sec, 15 sec, 20 sec, 25 sec, 30 sec, 45 sec, 1 min, 1.5 min, 2 min, 2.5 min, 3 min, and 3.5 min. I would guess that there are five or six steeps at least left in this tea but maybe even ten steeps. This is also the first tea I have drank where I know the claims of gushu can be truly backed up. While some of the other teas I have drank that claim to be gushu certainly were, some of them certainly weren’t. This I don’t doubt was gushu.
Flavors: Bitter, Hay, Sweet, Tobacco
It’s a beautiful day and today I’m sampling a 2011 YangQingHao Guyun Bulang courtesy of MrMopar. I decide to go with about 6 grams of material to my 1990s Huang Long Shan Hong Pi Long Shui Ping Hu 60 ml Teapot.
Upon inspection, the dry leaves are relatively large in size and have a thick, healthy look to them. Also, it is clear to me that MrMopar is much more skilled than myself at prying puerh! Barely any breakage!
I give the material a quick wash and inspect the nose. The wet leaves produce a rather dull nose… perhaps somewhat vegetal with very soft, barely noticeable, notes of plum in the background. Perhaps some mineral-y notes in there too. From my experience, this is rather common among Bulangs. The appearance of the soup is rather typical – clear with your golden hue to it.
Following a few infusions, I find that I enjoy the mouthfeel on this one. The soup is thick in the mouth with a brief initial cooling sensation followed by a sweet finish in the back of the throat, which seems to linger. There is also a very agreeable astringency that balances well with the sweetness that lingers in the back of the throat. This is a nice tea and would definitely recommend it.
Sweet and mellow sheng. Full body with a soft texture. Active in the mouth with nice mouth/throat coating. Quick hitting lower level relaxing qi which I enjoyed very much. Lingering aftertaste. The 1st sip was noticeably pleasant – fruit and honey sweetness dominated the flavor profile. My enjoyment continued throughout the session (8-9) steeps. I’m a fan! I was working with a sample of this and the 2006 Yechawang so that I can make a purchase decision. Based on my time with these two samples, I am fairly certain I prefer the Wuyangcha but I have enough for one more session before I commit.
YQH teas are not inexpensive; however, this tea is a relatively modest cost of $0.39 per gram (500g cake). I made my purchase last year and was fortunate enough to pay $0.35/g. With eleven years of age and pure Yiwu gushu material, this is a very good price! Lots and lots of beautiful whole leaves (but also stems and broken pieces as well). Bright and clear golden tea liquor. Floral/fruity aroma and a very sweet/mellow sip. Good longevity – I can easily go 10-11 infusions and I usually give up before the leaf does. The qi is also there but it is a gentle qi – evoking what I can best describe as a thoughtful meditative state. Nice daily drinker for me and I have successfully shared with non-tea drinking guests.
Gushu blend of material from the original six famous mountains (Yiwu, Mangzhi, Yibang, Youle, Manzhuan, Gedeng). With a mix of both autumn and spring leaf, it seems to have a thicker body and heavier brew than many of the YQH productions. Nice complexity during the tea session – I found both tobacco and old book leather (particularly in earlier infusions) as well as herbs, sweetness and fruitness. Active mouthfeel throughout the session. Never turned to bitterness. Very good YQH value found in this tea – premium 6 mountain blend; 10 years of age; great longevity and endurance; 500g cake ($0.39/gram). Dare I say a bargain YQH tea?
Premium YiWu material + authentic GuShu + 100% YiWu area blend + produced by a knowledgeable tea maker + carefully stored in Taiwan = a good tea in my experience. This tea did not disappoint. While this may not be the very best YQH tea I have in my collection, it is a very nice tea. Sweet and earthy notes initially coming from the wet leaves. The early sips offer a sweet, earthy taste which becomes a bit fruity after the first two infusions; a vanilla overtone emerges in the 4th and 5th infusions. The tea liquor offers good mouth and throat feel – smooth feel of the tea in the mouth and throat with nice textures. Overall, the tea has a fairly light body which deepens with longer steeps. Decent chi comes from the tea throughout the session. The wet leaves look very good but since this was formed into the more tightly compressed tuo shape, there are more bits and pieces resulting from the picking off of leaves; nonetheless the material seems to be of high quality.
When you have an opportunity to purchase 12 year old authentic GuShu YiWu material in 2016 at $200 for a 300g tuo ($0.67 per gram), that is a very good deal and a tasty tea to enjoy! If you enjoy tea with nice age on it, as I do, this one is worth owning.
Finally get to pull this one out of storage.
This cake is double wrapped and compressed like crazy. I had to break out the big pick on this one.
I pulled 10 grams out and gave it a rinse to open up a bit. The first 3 steeps were about 5 seconds each and combined into my big mug. The tea has decent body to it. The tongue is alive a bit as well. There is a touch of humid and it goes very sweet at the finish.
Next 3 were about 5 seconds as well and combined. I had let the leaf sit about an hour by this time. There is a little of the smoke and some of the nice bitterness is coming out as the humid part fades away. It is an almost sharp metallic hit in there somewhere. It is still alive and keeping the tongue alive and almost numb. This is till young at 4 years and is reminiscent of the other small sourced Bulangs I have drank. I think this has a bit more hit to it and I think this will be a wow tea in 5 more years, it is quite good now.
I haven’t had the Qui effect but it is still early . It does warm you as you drink it.
Steeped in the gaiwan.
Flavors: Bitter, Metallic, Smoke, Sweet
She handed it to me with two hands. “ooh,” I thought, “This is special tea”. So it’s one of the first I’m trying from the batch shared with me, and I’ve left the first steep off to the side to resteep a few times tomorrow.
First off: leather. I get that more than anything here, both in smell and taste. It even has the velvety leather feel to it that I’d imagine what drinking leather should be like (but probably isn’t). It’s super comforting and rich, and more than surprised me. I also didn’t get much else out of this first steep, even though leather was a new one for me, and a surprising like at that.
An enormous thanks to shezza for sharing some of her favorite teas with me, this being one of them. Eternally grateful and appreciative!
Flavors: Leather, Thick
Awesome, I’m first to review!
I pulled this from storage and gave the jar a whiff. I was picking up some pine wood, leather, tobacco, and an oddly placed bitter greens. This is the youngest that I’ve had from YQH. I placed a few good sized chunks of these beautiful leaves in my warmed jianshui. The leaves are nicely compressed and very dark. I can spot large leaves and some stems with some golden strands. I opened the lid and took a whiff. This warmed scent fits the profile of the aged sheng with aroma of pipe tobacco. I was also picking up some smoke and a little menthol in the background. I washed the leaves once and prepared for brewing. The steeped leaves scent began as tobacco and leather with a slight oatmeal and maybe plum background. However, the scent completely changed by only the second steeping. The scent became sweeter, and there was an odd sour green fruit scent, perhaps kiwi or maybe a slight lime. The taste was phenomenal! The brew touches the tongue and immediately covers the senses. The brew gives a full mouth-feel with a salivating sensation. The brew has a slight wood taste with a sourness in the background. I could already feel the huigan building up after the first sip. The brew flips and becomes prominently more woody and with a drying sensation at the second steep. Then, the brew flips back again at the third steeping by becoming intensely sweet. The brew begins with a powerful stevia sweetness and moves back into a slight sour wood taste. The huigan returns and takes a hold of the aftertaste. From this point on, the brew follows a circular pattern. The sip would begin with a stevia sweetness, then move into a sappy texture of maple wood, next it would transit into a sour leather tone, and finally it would end back at the stevia sweetness. This was a very complex brew. I was amazed at the transitioning of the various taste profiles. The brew begins to give off a numbing feeling in the later steeping sessions, and this feeling continues to grow. The qi for this brew is something else. This is a knock you on your @$$ brew. I should have eaten before beginning the session. The feeling begins in the forehead with some warming and flows throughout the body. I’m used to this feeling, so I continued drinking. Then, about half way through the session, I took a gulp and I was floored. I had to step away and eat a snack while I recovered. I returned to the tea table with a rejuvenated feeling as my body adjusted. I experienced a lot of blood flowing, sweating, hair prickling, and a wavy head feeling. This tea is something special, and it may be one of my favorites from YGH. I have some more of this, and I’m going to keep it in storage (hopefully). I’d love to see how this develops at the decade mark.
Flavors: Leather, Maple, Menthol, Pleasantly Sour, Sap, Sugar, Tobacco
I’m starting to pull out all the good stuff from storage, and this was on the list. I’m going to be getting a little more of this, so I decided to try this, so I know what I’ll be getting. The leaves are massive, dark, and I can spot some lengthy stems. They carry a dry wood and some spicy aroma. I warmed up my jianshui and placed them inside. I gave the pot a shake and took in this unique aroma. The scent was very light and subtle. I was picking up some slight fruit mixed with tobacco. The background scents were of decayed wood and some peat moss. The aromas were so subtle that I had to sit for a bit and try to pick them up. I washed the leaves once and prepared for brewing. The steeped leaves gave off some much more prominent notes of tobacco, leather, fruit, and some cherry wood. The first taste was intense, yet it was also incredibly light bodied. The initial sip was syrupy sweet and juicy with some underlying oak tone. The brew gave a gummy feeling in the mouth. The brew develops to a maple candy succulency (east coast people and Canadians might know about these candies). The aftertaste consists of a brown sugar sweetness. I detected no astringency in the brew, and I only tasted a very slight bitterness. I pushed the brew after a little bit to try and extract some more intense flavors. The brew was a nice bright orange, and I was getting more leather tastes in the later steeping sessions. The sweet tones faded for most of the session and were replaced by maple wood and leather. The taste also drift towards the pleasant sour side. However, in the final steeping session, the brew came back with a sugarcane sweetness mixed with the maple wood. The huigan is very delayed, but is extremely thick. The back of my throat had nice maple syrup taste that followed after the session was finished. The leaves are mostly intact and massive. The qi is not all that powerful, but it is intensely warming. I had to change out of my sweater in the middle of session, for I began to feel like a furnace. This is a very nice tea, but isn’t my favorite offering from YGH. I think this needs a little more storage, but it’s still really tasty.
Flavors: Brown Sugar, Cherry Wood, Decayed wood, Drying, Leather, Maple, Peat Moss, Pleasantly Sour, Sugarcane
I decided to bust this out from storage for the after Thanksgiving celebration. The dry cake has some massive dark leaves. They carry a dry camphor and pipe tobacco. I placed a good sized chunk in my warmed Jianshui and gave it a shake. The pipe tobacco scent deepened and notes of pine resin and wet wood came up. I washed the leaves once and prepared for brewing. The steeped leaves gave off a whiskey, menthol, dark wood, and pipe tobacco scent. The liquor was a deep dark bronze. The taste was fantastic! This is a beautiful tea. The leaves are massive and whole and yield a delicious brew. The flavor is very slight and tasteful. The prominent notes of pipe tobacco, leather, and an underlying sweetness follow the drinker throughout the entire session. The leaves are unbelievably durable! I was able to pull over fifteen long steeping sessions. The taste is not a full heavy body, but its light, airy, and smooth. The best part about this brew is the qi. It is so good! The qi begins quickly within the first couple steeps. The feeling begins with a warming body and a nice head buzz. This feeling follows throughout the entire body and gets you zinging. My eyes blurred, and I became very talkative. This brew makes my body and mind feel really good and happy. I loved the feeling I received from this incredible session. I didn’t notice any huigan and zero astringency. This would make a perfect tea to serve to guests and get a gathering talking. I really like this, and I will definitely be sharing some with my guests.
Flavors: Camphor, Dark Wood, Drying, Leather, Menthol, Sweet, Tobacco
I am so glad that picked some of this up! Also, I am the first to review, which is always exciting. Once I got my package in the mail, I immediately took this and placed it in my storage to decompress from its long travel. Today I decided to open it up and give it a shot. The dry leaf is so light and flaky, but I can easily spot massive intact leaves. These decade old leaves give off an aged, slight menthol scent mixed well with some fruity tones. I placed a generous amount in my warmed jianshui and gave it a shake. The scent was very heavy and spiced. I was catching whiffs of leather, slight smoke, tobacco and decayed wood. I let these beauties sit for a bit, and then I prepared for brewing. The steeped leaves smelled relatively like the warmed ones, except the scents became deeper and spicier. The taste was unbelievable! This drink fills the mouth with a heavy liquid. The tongue is soothed, the taste buds are stimulated, and the throat is warmed. I loved it! The huigan was thick and lasting. The taste begins with calm leather, nectar, and a juicy sensation. The liquor itself smelled fantastic! I was reminded of Tahitian Vanilla Beans; the aroma was so creamy and rich. The creme flavor came about by the second steeping. The texture was smooth and silky and easily filled the senses. I was struck by tongue prickling and my hair on my head began to rise. The qi was a steady electricity coursing throughout my veins. A slight sour tone appeared in the background by the third steeping, and it grew consistently over time. The gorgeous cream note is replaced by a tantalizing leather and wood by the sixth steeping. The brew begins to show its age in later steeping with the dominating tones being leather, dark wood, tobacco, and a slight bitter. However, the liquor keeps its consistent vanilla aroma. The qi is quite powerful and all body encompassing. I was alert, happy, and giggly. The qi is centered at the head and creates a lot of pressure on the mind and temples. I absolutely loved this deep bronze colored drink. There were so many different scents encompassing this session. The leaves with their spice, the drink with its sweetness, and the taste with its power. I loved how intricate this tea is. I’m really glad that I have some of this. I’m going to let the rest store for a little more longer and compare notes. This is truly a King Tea!
Flavors: Cream, Dark Wood, Decayed wood, Leather, Nectar, Pleasantly Sour, Smoke, Tobacco, Vanilla
This is a very good tea and an excellent example of YQH quality productions. It is an authentic single origin Yiwu gushu. This is the first of the 2004 season’s premium Yiwu harvest – a Pre-Qing Ming or Yu Qian tea. Nice whole leaves. Fair amount with stems attached to one or two whole leaves. Sweet, smooth and silky with a very balanced taste and no astringency detected at all. It is worth noting that there is a blend of tobacco and old leather sweetness throughout the session (albeit more dominant in the early sessions). Definite sense of chaqi hitting by the 3rd cup. Overall this tea yields a more delicate, light tasting soup (i.e., not thick) – very appealing and enjoyable to me but not a complex heavyweight. Since the tea is on the lighter side, you can push it without fear. On one steeping, I intentionally used half the water and it still produced a delicious cup which was definitely thicker than the previous cups. A final comment on the tea’s longevity – this is an impressively durable tea. I’ve steeped it 10 times now (during 2 sessions) and the leaves are not yet fully open and my longest steep time has been 15 seconds. These leaves have much to offer!
6.5g in a 85~ ml shibo. If you read the description of this tea, the wrapper is labeled “wonderous fragrance” which couldn’t be more accurate. I received the tea in it’s original box still wrapped in plastic. Soon as I lifted the cover off the box, while the tea was still wrapped in plastic the aroma hit me right in the face. Obviously removing the plastic and wrappers ( yes two on this cake for some reason, works for more though, both are thin and I’m already a master of tearing them) only intensified the strong smell. I thought to myself that I’d like to tape it to my face and walk around all day with it. Enough on aroma for now just wanted to say a bit about it as it was very pleasant and strong.The cake is a fat one at 500 grams and heavily compressed. It’s about the size of another 400 gram cake I own and smaller in diameter than the White2tea 90 HK 357 cake. I flip the cake over, probe the beeng hole for a soft spot and break free about 6.5 grams of tea. Material is a 6 mountain blend of old good plantation with at least 30% gushu mixed in
Into shibo it goes and I start my normal routine. Quick rinse which I use to heat up my pitcher and cup. I take a sip to get some idea of whats going on. Due to compression the rinse is light but the flavor is already pretty good. I give the the tea a couple minutes to steam /loosen up and then begin to doing flash brews. First few steeps continue to remain light in body and taste getting a little stronger with each one but they give you signs of whats to come. First, while the taste is light its not lacking complexity in the slightest. Sweet fruit, vanilla, plums, some cups even had an extra layer of an almost strawberry flavor, ummmmm YUMMY! to say the least. No bitterness or astringency in this but I also didn’t push it too hard. After taste was not the strongest but was full mouthed, in the throat and I could still taste it almost 2 hours after stopping. Second, there is some serious no joke Qi going on here. Strong feeling in the throat. Someone else has said they can almost feeling it drip down and I agree with them 100%. That throat feel continues into the chest and stomach. Very warming as well, full body sweats from forehead to shins, I think its almost needless to say but I was very very tea drunk. The feeling was closer to the effects LBZ has had on me instead of the normal yiwu calm and relaxation. Third, this tea steeps forever and not only that but the flavor and qi never really subsided. I got 20+ out of this and could have gotten 3 or 4 more longish steeps before another couple really long ones. My initial session was about 12 cups before I took a break. Came back to it a few hours later to finish it up and the taste was still full, complex and the Qi was still full force. I’m not sure that I’ve had any tea deliver Qi of that level 15+ steeps in.
In general the body is not overly thick like some of the more modern teas of high quality. The taste is light but really good, need to pay attention when drink this. So this is not perfect but what does well it does exceptionally well. Right now this can be acquired for $275, so right around .50 cents a gram. I think that if you’re in the market for quality eastern banna tea then you really can’t beat this at that price. To elaborate a bit further, it’s cheaper than both Bosch and Tuhao from White2tea. Those are some good teas, I own both and I don’t want to sound like I’m knocking them but they aren’t in the same league as this in terms of durability, Qi and complexity. That and it’s got a decade of good storage on it! This is one I am without a doubt going to be “hitting with a hammer”