Zhao Zhou

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Recent Tasting Notes


This fellow is special indeed in so many ways. First of all its leaves are quite huge and to make it clear this fellow wasn’t pressed it was a loose leave aged Sheng. Normally I am not really into wet stored stuff because it tend to scent and taste like basement mold. There is definitely a certain major aspect of this part within this very aged buddy too but in a different way. Scent-wise there is a main bouquet of beetroot stored in a more or less wet old basement but there is also a layer of from fresh fallen rain soaked up old wood. It transformed itself more into a TCM herbal structure than one of a Pu-erh – don’t get me wrong I am sure many would say this type of scent and taste as very typical aged considering its date because at that time nearly everything was stored more or less wet. But I am focusing always on the origin of its nature. What I mean is if you store a Pu-erh perfectly over many decades it definitely tend to transform more into something herbal dark-ish within its composition but it also should keep many aspects of its original form and formula. BUT even if this isn’t the case here it’s for sure a fantastic and unique example and experience because you also need to respect and discover the old way Pu was treated and processed to totally understand Pu-erh from its roots to its way of manufacturing over time and today.

Taste-wise this nearly dark red liquor express itself in a more or less similar way as its bouquet did. Its texture is very silky creamy with a certain herbal spiciness to it. The actual nuances as mentioned are a majorly slightly sweet beetroot with a certain basement feel to it and a woodsy wet composition while soaked up with fresh fallen rain. The actual sensation isn’t in fact a complex tasting profile or a long aftertaste it’s more what it does to you! The effect of this fellow is weird and so so typical when it comes to aged fellows with a certain funk to it! Those buddies never visits you without a certain type of hangover. I read within a scientific article once how much a Pu in fact contains. This was quite fascinating! Especially when it comes to Shou and really old wet aged stuff which is quite in a similar field when it comes to a huge amount of microorganism, bacteria, fungus and enzymes. They tested a bunch of old cakes within a lab and found out that there are around 40 different types of fungi within a cake and even more astonishing some of that stuff was to believed to be not existing anymore since thousands over thousands of years. This buddy first and foremost makes you tea drunk with the first sip especially if you are sensitive to it. It has an instant major impact on your whole functioning system of your head. I got a bit of headache but also a certain burning tingling feel along every corner and path of my whole sinuses system. You can feel it within you whole head back to your neck like an electrifying feeling but after a while the relaxation blends in and the whole drunken condition turns into a warming chill mode. This was definitely a special experience!

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This is definitely freaking medicine! It taste and scents so completely different than everything I ever experienced before. Scent wise within its dry stage there is a small hint of a Sheng Puerh flair. Within its steaming wet phase your are going to notice a known White Tea scent but also something very herbal citrus like-ish. Taste wise you can feel this herbal medicine spiciness taking over every possible sensing, tasting or scenting functions of your body. Every cell even the smallest ones are effected and under control. This spiciness is cooling your mouth and throat region instantly without hesitating any second. There is no time to rethink or think at all – Everything is now and now is everything! This tea really gets you were you wouldn’t believe it could reach. It equips you with wings but keeps you on the ground at the same moment.

Getting deeper and deeper with this elegant precious tea you will discover more and more of it. In fact after a couple of cups I finally found the best description I could possible hand you over TCM meets Jassid bitten Tea! In this case the itemized formula sounds like this chrysanthemum flowers, Goji berries, dried Chinese red dates, Licorice root, Ginseng, Longan plus a fine cane sugar taste connected with this floral but more exotic fruity taste of an Oriental Beauty jassid bitten tea. Within this fruitiness there is an excellent fusion of passion fruit, a fine layer of sweet orange followed by a hint of lychee plus a fine citrus-hint. This is definitely a warming tea. Highly recommendable!

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Instead of yixing pot this time I used a simple celadon-glazed gaiwan so that the tea has more space and can express its fragrance better, and also because this puer is rather on the younger side, in which case I seldom use pots.
Short infusions first about 3-4 sec, later 5-10. Temperature rises from 85 to 90.

3-4 sec: there’s a remarkable — rather unique when talking about puers — fiery scent that almost hits me right after infusing the leaves. It also appears in the taste, and remains through the first 4-5infusions. Besides this fiery aroma, the tea is quite smooth, and deep. Despite the two, hardly compatible features, the tea is well-balanced, and has a beautiful calmed ambiance.

Let’s see what lies beyond the taste. In the first infusion I was mainly occupied by this fascinating ember flavour, but when I moved on to the second one I noticed a major heating effect. Looking out the window to the cool, rain-soaked city I knew it’s the very best tea for the moment. This strong warmness protects from catching cool and gives a cosy feeling. A deep elated chaqi appears as well, and flows through slowly in the whole body.

Later — from around the 4th infusion (5-8 sec) — the tea gets smoother.
As the fiery notes fade, the tea’s main structure appears. Deep, milder ‘puerish’ taste with a lightsome woody (still bit smoky) scent.


All in all it’s a great, unique puer that I definitely do recommend!

Flavors: Fireplace, Smoke, Smoked, Whiskey

190 °F / 87 °C 6 tsp 180 OZ / 5323 ML

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drank Rugui 2015 (508) by Zhao Zhou
3 tasting notes

Used a small yixing teapot reserved for dark oolongs. Short infusions first about 3-4 sec, later 5-10.

3-4 sec: Starts with mild, creamy sweetness and flowery smells — pretty lightsome tea.

Later on (around 3-4 infusions, 5-8 sec) it gets stronger, fiery chaqi appears. However, its delicacy remains. Rich both in fragrance and flavour. Still round and creamy; almost like silk it fills the whole mouth. Extreme complexity, real rock-tea.


A truly one of a kind tea, I definitely recommend:

Flavors: Baked Bread, Butter, Cacao, Chestnut, Cream, Dark Chocolate, Flowers, Wet Wood

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 tsp 130 OZ / 3844 ML

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Jingmai by zhao Zhou tea review.

Ru Yao dragon teapot gongfucha

Dry leaf: fruity, musty.

Wet leaf: fruity, musty, spices.

1x long rinse.

Light steep: I taste/smell; slight honey. light —→ grass, metallic (unknown), sweet.

Medium steep, I taste/smell; slight spices. Light —> honey, grass, sweet, metallic (unknown).

Heavy steep: I taste/smell; light —> spices, honey. Strong -→ grass, metallic (silver? Iron?), sweet.

All in all an awesome tea. Great taste, aroma and cha qi. A tad bit plain so I rate a 98.

Definitely recommend.

Many hanks to zhao Zhou teas for this lovely sample.


Flavors: Fruity, Grass, Honey, Metallic, Musty, Spices, Sweet

200 °F / 93 °C 6 g 6 OZ / 165 ML

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