Yunnan Sourcing

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Recent Tasting Notes

72

A nice Lapsang Souchong! I got the Spring 2021 harvest of this tea from my order from YS. Medium thickness with a rich aroma, lacked a bit in taste and finish. I wished it was more complex and potent, but nonetheless a nice drinker, especially if you like smokey stuff.

Flavors: Campfire, Lychee, Smoke

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec 4 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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71

A very easy drinker! I got the Spring 2022 harvest from a sample pack from my YS order. It is a nice, soothing tea, but it lacked complexity and character. While quite nice to drink, I just wished it had offered more. Nonetheless, a refreshing tea to sip on after a long day.

Flavors: Butter, Floral, Spinach, Stewed Vegetables, Sweet

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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77

A really nice Dianhong. I got the Spring 2022 harvest of this tea from my YS order, and I got to say it is quite nice! Strong and complex taste with a nice aroma, a moderate finish and a nice chaqi. I felt that this tea could do better in terms of texture, which was quite rough and chalky, and in terms of character. If it offered a bit more, I would’ve highly recommended it to everyone I know, but it gets a decent recommendation for now.

Flavors: Citrus Zest, Dark Chocolate, Malt, Nutty, Plum, Raisins, Spices

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec 4 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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29

This tea kinda made me want to puke. I got the Autumn 2021 harvest of this tea from my YS order, and the taste was just, bad? It maybe activated my gag reflex or something but I didn’t want to drink this tea. Very bland taste that was quite unpleasant and a mediocre texture. The finish was non existent, and the tea had a disappointing character. The only redeeming thing was the aroma, but it really wasn’t that great either.

Flavors: Chrysanthemum, Citrus, Floral, Roasted, Spring Water, Stewed Vegetables, Vegetal

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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71

An okay Dianhong. I got the Spring 2022 harvest of this tea from my YS order. This tea had a moderate strength in taste that is one dimensional, which was a bit disappointing. A nice, complex aroma, with a smooth texture that changes over time. It had a nice finish, but the aftertaste was a bit weak. The tea could’ve offered more in terms of longevity and chaqi as well.

Flavors: Apple, Chocolate, Fruity, Guava, Malt, Nutty, Pastries, Plum, Tangy

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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75

Pretty decent dancong. I got this from my order from YS, and while I felt it was missing some things, it was overall a decent tea. It had a strong taste and aroma, but the taste felt empty, like it was missing something. Decent texture and finish, with a surprisingly semi-potent cha qi.

Flavors: banana, Bread, Citrus Zest, Floral, Ginseng, Grapefruit, Malt, Olives, Plum

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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70

This one is pretty mild. It mostly just tastes like plants. Sweetened with milk, it’s pretty pleasant, but I probably should have leafed it more heavily. Grabbed from a TTB.

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89

In order of strength: Hay, Pear, Green Apple, Honeysuckle

Da Qing is subtle in a master act in its balance of astringency, bitterness, fruit, florals, and spice. This tea gives way to existence of having a forest edge the prairie you are standing with gentle breezes that carry the green fruit and honeysuckle of the forest. Just the right amount of pepper on the end; or perhaps its actually your wife calling you in for supper and abruptly ending your serenity?

Just the right amount.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 4 tsp 70 OZ / 2070 ML

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Spring 2021 batch.

Prepared in my Jian Shui gaiwan, and served in my porcelain tea cup via my glass cha hai. Filtered Santa Monica municipal water just off the boil throughout.

Pure gold, large, straight, fuzzy leaves (buds?) – dry, it has a mild yet distinctive aroma. Hints of hay, beeswax, pencil shavings, and nectarine.

Butterscotch to hazy sunrise gradient in the glass.

Infused, gentle sweet aromatics suggest yam, light malt, and apricot. Low floral/spice (saffron?) notes as well.

Distinctive yet subtle flavor profile with hints of summer fruit, johnny cakes, and chestnut. Long quiet finish has a faint cocoa quality. Deep and smooth.

Notably rich mouth-feel, medium-thick, with very low bitterness throughout.

Subsequent to my purchase, I’ve read that this variety is endangered. While the vendor describes the source as a “plantation” (suggesting cultivated rather than wild plants), I’d want to know more about the tea’s conservation status before making future purchases.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 8 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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Spring 2021 batch.

Black and gold leaves smell of alfalfa.

Prepared in my Jian Shui gaiwan, and served in my porcelain tea cup via my glass cha hai. Filtered Santa Monica municipal water just off the boil throughout.

Alloy orange liquor. Very mild aroma brings to mind hay, corn, and oats.
Sweet on the palate, suggesting apricot and almonds, grain, and a hint of licorice root. The earthy/grassy flavors dominate the finish with hints of baked clay and chestnut.
Reasonable longevity, but the flavor becomes drab after several infusions and it can’t be pushed with lengthy infusions or it just turns bitter without retaining much character.

Pleasant, warming, smooth dian hong – enjoyable but one I wouldn’t seek out again.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 8 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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This…. This is interesting. There are some woody notes in there somewhere. It’s also astingentcy but in a weird way. Kinda like the astringency you find from some herbs where it sits closer to the front of your tongue. Not so pleasant… But the first few sips were uh… paper? Herbaceous…. I don’t know how to explain this…

Third steeping now it was a bit sweeter. But there are still those other weird notes

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86

I love the smooth, coating mouthfeel of this tea, as well as its elegant taste and complex aromas.

I can smell notes of forest, white nectarines, milk, stewed green vegetables in the pot. The taste is quite bitter and fresh – it has a very crisp and mineral presence. Among Dan Congs, it is more of a floral/savoury kind with notes of apple leaves, star anise, grass, sweet grains, wood and nuts. Addintionally, there is a sugarcane sweetness in the finish.

Flavors: Apple, Bitter, Floral, Forest Floor, Grain, Grassy, Milky, Mineral, Nectarine, Nutty, Smooth, Star Anise, Stewed Vegetables, Sugarcane, Vegetal, Woody

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 4 OZ / 110 ML

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60

This is a solid, clean, semi-aged raw puer which improves over the first several infusions. The 25g portion I received was included in my Feb 2020 Premium Tea Club box. It is labeled as “wild” which I take to mean that the pedigree is not well defined. It could be descended from a standard cultivar but without records or a lineage lost to time, or it could be something that was spread by animals either as seed or vegetation from an unknown origin, either recently or long ago. This makes the statement of it being “pure” a rather dubious claim, I think. If the trees/bushes were noticeably OLD, it’s safe to say it would have been claimed to be “ancient”, too, as that is seen as more valuable. I just don’t know. That said, There was no hint of what I recognize as “assamica” varietal in aroma, flavor, or leaf size, nor the sweetness or pubescence of the Camellia taliensis species.

I started with 5g of carefully-flaked cake and rinsed for 20s in boiling spring water and proceeded with 30s successive infusions in 3 oz boiling spring water. Each liquor was just a tad bit darker than pictured in the YS photo. #1 was notable more for what it lacked: no fishiness or “humid” flavor or scent, not very astringent, but not very flavorful at all. The leaf hadn’t really opened up yet. By #3, the leaf had opened up considerably And there was a slight woody-tea aroma, and some bitterness had become apparent, but still no off-putting flavors or scents. The flavors intensified in #4 and lingered nicely in the mouth. By now the leaves were a deep brown color. After a 15 min. pause, I resumed the infusion series with boiling water for 20s, 45s, 1 min., and 1 min., achieving the same deep golden, crystal-clear soups as before. In #5, the bitterness was very pronounced, but so was the tea fragrance and woody-tea flavors. Still not any trace of the promised “fruity sweetness”. I know my senses of taste and smell are keen again, as I enjoyed a variety of meats, breads, fruits and veggies today and over the past week. Infusions #6, #7, and #8 were much the same as #5, but less astringent. Stopping here, but might re-steep some more tomorrow. I think perhaps the storage on this might have been a bit dry over the past 19 years. It certainly has strong caffeine, as that has kicked in and made me perspire! But that isn’t the only thing I expect from tea.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 30 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 88 ML

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50

Not my cup of tea. The leaves appeared dirty and decayed, and tasted more of an old woolen blanket than tea. Aroma didn’t appeal to me either.

Preparation
Boiling 1 min, 0 sec 5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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85

I am really liking this. This white tea is strongly oxidized and the leaves are pretty red. There is a lot of sweetness and thickness, with bold foresty/swampy and fruity+vanillaish aromas that give this tea great depth and complexity. There is also a bit of that almost medicinal old book sweetness of aged white teas. Very comforting overall feel that makes this feel really nice in the body.

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80

What a pleasant surprise! This was a free gift sample packet slipped into my recent order from YS. And it might actually be my favorite tea of the order! Only a couple of years old, but incredibly smooth, without compost or fish flavors, or any defect to my tongue or nose. Very rich, even the first 10 seconds steep rinse was a deep red color. The YS description is right on the mark, and now on my 10th steeping this brew is still thick, rich, and satisfying. I’ve added a full cake to my wish list already, what a value!

Flavors: Cocoa, Dates, Dried Fruit, Rich, Thick, Tobacco, Woody

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML
looseTman

TeaEarleGreyHot,
Sounds good. How noticeable / obvious is the woody flavor? Thanks!

TeaEarleGreyHot

looseTman, The wood flavor is there, but not in the front. Sometimes wood is the only thing you can taste, but this tea is much richer and more complex. In fact, I’ve now bought two full (250 g) cakes of it. Yummy!

looseTman

So it’s subtle, not prominent?
“…richer and more complex.” certainly sounds good.
I wonder how it compares to 2018 Yunnan Sourcing Lucy Ripe Pu-erh?

looseTman

Have you tried the 3 other shou in this series?
– “Bu Lang Mountain”
– “Jingmai Mountain”
– “Me Song”
Thanks!

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86

καλημέρα. Good morning. In a few hours, I’ll be on a plane heading to Greece. But first, tea. Need something with good flavor and a slight punch but not too much. Woke up around five because the sun was peeking in our window and of course, my body was like, “The sky is awake, So I am awake.” _. This Jin Jun Mei has all the woody and earthy notes one could desire. Barely any astringency. A mix of oak and a bit of cedar. Wet forest floor with a bit of dryness on the tongue in the finish.

gmathis

Travel safely!

vallhallow

Enjoy your trip!

Skysamurai

Thank you!

ashmanra

Ooooo exciting! Enjoy, and safe travels!

mrmopar

Enjoy your trip. Sounds exciting.

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22
Golley, I sure wanted to like this tea, but I just can’t. It tasted stale and lifeless. Each of the stuffed oranges is smaller than a ping-pong ball, and a dull green in color. I broke it apart and used the entire content of tea plus all of the orange skin in the brew. 4 min western style steeping. The black tea component was nondescript, unimpressive and dull. The orange skin contributed just the faintest of citrus flavor. The 2nd and 3rd steepings went downhill from there. There was no indication of a production date or expiration date on the packaging, and I can’t help but wonder if these are from the same batch that were reviewed here some five years ago. Because they certainly taste old, and not in a good way. It is not offensive, or foul, but it could’ve been so much better! If you like citrusy teas, then I recommend going with something else. Even just tossing a few fresh orange peel bits into a cup with a Lipton tea bag from the grocery store will outperform this king orange in zing, depth, and complexity, and at 1/20th the price. Bigelow’s Constant Comment is a hundred times better. The best thing I can say is that I bought the smallest sample package possible (3 pieces), so the price of this education was minimal.

Flavors: Orange, Tea

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec 8 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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I agree with Rich: 2018 Lucy is “…a little more complex.” “It tastes of bittersweet chocolate …” “Very smooth, and moderate caffeine.”

Like Code, we tasted a little astringency. For me, when it was noticeable, it was on the front portion of my tongue. Perhaps it’s related to the notes of bittersweet chocolate?

Overall, intermittent astringency aside, Lucy is rich, smooth and provides 6 full-bodied steeps, 2 moderately full-bodied, with the last 2 being lighter-bodied, but still enjoyable.

At the current $50 regular price, the $/gram ratio could be better – $50/250 g = $.20/g, as Lucy is a 250 g cake as opposed to the traditional 357 g or larger 500 g cakes. With our steeping method, https://steepster.com/looseTman, this works out to be $4/day unless it’s purchased on sale.

mrmopar

Nice to see you on here, been a while hope you both are safe and well.

looseTman

Thanks mrmopar! Yes, we’re both are safe and well. We hope all is well with your family too?

mrmopar

Yeah, all good at the moment. Hope you both have been well.

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80

Very tasty. The mouthfeel is very full and substantial and there is a fresh type of fruity sweetness that reminds of eucalyptus or lychee.

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85

I brewed this tea gong fu style as I do for most.
The aroma of the steamed leaves is typical of most older puerhs – having nice notes of moss, leaves, and a touch of creaminess. Overall – a very earthy and mild smell that becomes stronger and gains musk once washed.
In terms of the liquor’s flavour, it is similar to the aroma with overtones of earth and musk and just a hint of something spicy – perhaps cardamom?
A good example of a classic late 90s puerh!

Flavors: Cardamom, Clove, Earth, Forest Floor, Musk, Rainforest, Wet Moss, Wet wood

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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86

First spring green tea of 2022.

Pale green leaves shorter than a typical dragon well. Matcha like aroma that changes to spinach and chestnut when the leaves are placed in a heated vessel. The brewed tea is nutty with a pronounced roast. Tastes like stir fried vegetables with an astringency that becomes less noticeable the more you sip. Notes of grilled asparagus, green beans, zucchini, straw, and edamame.

Enjoyable tea but not memorable.

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85

Nice, potent Yunnan black tea. It is sweet in a fruity way, with some nice cinnamon-like spicy aspects, which give it an uplifting and thirst-quenching quality much like a good second flush darjeeling. When it is brewed stronger it becomes grippy without feeling dry, the kind of astringency that feels good. I can see why this is more expensive than most other dianhongs.

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75

Nice, typical moonlight white with that nice thirst-quenching melony vanilla-y profile. Not the fullest-tasting one I’ve had though.

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