83
drank 2017 Magic Mountain DNA by white2tea
1030 tasting notes

It’s been about 2.5 years since i’ve had this sheng. Even with a wicked wind that drove my allergies crazy today, i think I can tell this one is finally turning a corner but it still doesn’t impress too strongly; it’s rather restrained.

It’s mellow, lacking in body but it makes up for that somehow, some way. Don’t want to be too vague but that’s about all I can muster to describe the unknown factor. Aroma isn’t strong but it’s different — I get mostly some florals, spicy black pepper, some sweetness and later grapefruit rind mixed with licorice root and overripe honeydew. Leafy medicinal bitter taste reminding a bit of yerba maté; licorice root sweetness is rather thin. A little drying after the swallow but nothing that seems out of place for a sheng of this age. The bitterness spreads a little after the swallow and lingers about as long as the concurrent whisper of smoke. Licorice root-honey persists, giving way to a light cooling in the mouth then the throat and armpits. Grain and grapefruit zest come out more as steeps progress, lingering lightly in the aftertaste with a combination of orange blossom morphing into peach and Yiwu-like lavender and violet. Final steeps gain body, becoming viscous and sweeter while retaining the bitterness. Body warming, especially in the face.

At first, I settled in to its mellow and grounding earthen energy then realized I had to get up and make a big batch of pupusas. The tea fueled me for a few hours (along with a shot of tequila in my agua de tamarindo :3). When I came back to the pot later, I shared with a friend who stopped by. He’d never heard of pu’er before tonight. I though maybe it would be too bitter for him considering I had oversteeped because we were caught up in conversation. He’s a fan of northern California hoppy IPA beer and kept asking for more!

Still don’t think it’s worth the price, especially for lacking body (until the end) and deep strength. Perhaps those will come with age and better storage.

Taking a wild guess on the origins of the leaf – autumn Laoman’e (though doesn’t have the fuzzy leaf underside I’ve seen before) with a smidge of Manzhuan or some other Yiwu? Nannuo? Whatever it is, it’s a good representative of Menghai taste.

Edit: Looks like there’s three types of leaf: a nutty brown one that has fuzzy unders with some having the main vein coated, another that’s nutty brown and rubbery smooth on the bottom and a third that’s larger and dark olive-khaki.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Bitter, Black Pepper, Caramel, Cherry, Citrus Zest, Coconut, Dried Fruit, Drying, Earth, Floral, Grain, Grapefruit, Hay, Herbs, Honey, Honeydew, Hops, Lavender, Leather, Licorice, Medicinal, Menthol, Peach, Plum, Salty, Smoke, Sweet, Violet, Wet Rocks, White Chocolate

Natethesnake

That tea knocked my socks off fresh out of the mail and has only disappointed since. I believe it was released in the spring of 17 so assuming it’s spring material. I think it was advertised as Menghai style so guessing a Nannuo Bulang blend? I tossed the rest of my cake (that I regret buying) into heated storage and plan to keep it there a loooong time

derk

I can see why you stashed it away. My first impression, at least a year after your glowing review, was a resounding meh. Since your storage contrasts mine in that yours is heated, I’d love to see an updated note from you!

Natethesnake

Will do when I get around to it.

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Natethesnake

That tea knocked my socks off fresh out of the mail and has only disappointed since. I believe it was released in the spring of 17 so assuming it’s spring material. I think it was advertised as Menghai style so guessing a Nannuo Bulang blend? I tossed the rest of my cake (that I regret buying) into heated storage and plan to keep it there a loooong time

derk

I can see why you stashed it away. My first impression, at least a year after your glowing review, was a resounding meh. Since your storage contrasts mine in that yours is heated, I’d love to see an updated note from you!

Natethesnake

Will do when I get around to it.

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Always open to gifting or swapping teas. I do send international when feasible. Please follow and send a message if you see a tea in my notes or cupboard that piques your interest.

Tea became a hobby and my daily drink of choice some time late in the last decade. My introduction to loose leaf came in the form of dumpster-dived Wuyi oolong packets that somebody left upon moving out of an apartment building. From there, my palate expanded to teas from across China and the world. I used to focus more on taste and still harbor the habit, but after trying sheng puer, I tend to focus more on how a tea feels in my body. Does it complement my constitution? Does it change my mood or does it enhance my current mindstate? Flavored teas are not a favorite but I do drink them intermittently.

In terms of who I am, you could consider me a jill of all trades. Specialty is not my strength, as can be seen in the spread of my tea notes. I might have attention issues. One thing I will always love is riding a bicycle.

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