Lao Ban Zhang Shou Been

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Pu-erh Tea
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Edit tea info Last updated by JC
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200 °F / 93 °C 5 min, 30 sec

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From The Phoenix Collection

Purchased March 28, 2005
200g Ripe cake

About The Phoenix Collection View company

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2 Tasting Notes

184 tasting notes

Quick Notes This is a double Session review. Two for one!

Dry – Sweet
Wet – Sweet, Creamy, Malty, Bitter with chocolate notes, slightly citrusy and/or juicy.
Liquor – Brown-Bronze

Gong Fu in 5oz Yixing Gaiwan – 5g (loosen tea result of initial prying the cake)

1st 5sec – Creamy, slightly sweet and earthy with apparent bitterness that hints of chocolate. As it washes down it is brothy and thick with chocolate-like bitterness. The aftertaste is creamy and bittersweet that lingers in the back of the throat.

2nd 3secs – Creamy, bittersweet chocolate notes upfront. As it washes down it is thick and creamy with some sweetness that turns savory almost brothy with bitter chocolate notes. The aftertaste is sweet, thick, creamy, slightly savory and refreshing.

3rd 5secs – Thick, creamy, bittersweet with chocholate notes up front. As it washes down, the bitterness notes become more apparent and savory/brothy. The aftertaste is thick, bittersweet with brothy background that lingers in the mouth and back of the throat.

4th 7secs – Sweet, creamy and then bittersweet up front with weaker chocolate notes. As it washes down, it becomes brothy and bitter with chocolate notes. The aftertaste is creamy and bittersweet that lingers in the mouth and back of the throat.

5th 9secs – Sweet, creamy and bittersweet that is slightly juicy/citrusy. As it washes down, it becomes brothy and savory that slowly turns juicy with some bitterness. The aftertaste is bittersweet and thick, it still lingers but not as apparent as previously.

6th 17secs – Creamy, sweet, and bittersweet with juicy/citrusy up front. As it washes down, it becomes brothy and then juicy with bitter notes. The aftertaste is sweet with a bitterness that lingers in the mouth and back of throat, slightly juicier than previously.

(three steeps before I ran out of water)

1st 50secs Creamy, slightly earthy with sweetness and immediately bitter that hints of chocolate notes up front. As it washes down, it feels heavy and thick with savory and brothy body that is also bitter and slowly develops some sweetness. The aftertaste is thick, creamy but savory with bitterness that resembles chocolate notes. (slightly refreshing).

2nd 35secs Once again Creamy, sweet with earthy notes that turns bitter with chocolate notes up front. As it washes down, it feels thick and creamy; brothy/soupy savory notes that also wear bitterness that slightly resemble chocolate and develops some sweetness. The after taste is creamy, savory and slowly turn bittersweet with slight chocolate notes.

Third I steeped for a about 45 seconds. The steep was very similar to the previous but had a more ‘juicy’ feel and slightly less creamy.

Final Notes
I like Lao Ban Zhang as a Sheng more than Shou. You still get some of the Bitterness and ‘chaqi’ that characterizes Lao Ban Zhang but its different. To me this cake smells really sweet but it has a sour/bitter taste together with a brothy/soupy savory body as it goes down, its really good. But to me it reminds me of a Pho soup, its savory but it has a certain sour/bitterness to it, that can linger in the mouth. I love Pho, but only when I feel like it. This might be the case with this cake, that is something that you can love when you want it. I’m going to drink it a few more times to give it a fair rating currently I seat around the 78s to 89 range. Good tea, great tea if you want Ripe Lao Ban Zhang.


OMG this sounds SOOOOOO GOOD! Can we say SWEET AND CREAMY more? I was GIDDY reading this!!! :)


Indeed it is. I’m still not sure how I like it compared to others. If we ever do a swap I’ll send you some Tibetan Brick. I’m addicted to that one. SWEET and Creamy.


Ok, you got me JC, after reading your Phoenix reviews last couple of days, I now have to check them out… (hopefully, they don’t ship to Canada and I can maintain new year’s resolution!)


LOL! Less tea is not a good New Year’s resolution, I can understand “I will keep my tea fund under control”. So far I’ve incredibly happy with the Phoenix Collection. I think partially is because I’ve spoken to David to get recommendations based on my preferences or just on ‘current curiosity’.


Another David in the tea world?? What’s up with that ?? How many are out there??
As for my resolution, believe me, it’s a good one! Just means I’m gonna have more of the fabulous tea I already own :-)


Ahhh. Stocking up on favorites! I need to do that. I’m still doing a lot of exploring. I might use a partial budget for restock.

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9 tasting notes

An almost citrus-y nose, steeps dark and earthy from the medium round cake. Multiple steepings each better than the last. Very even, no distractions, just pure pu-erh.

190 °F / 87 °C 5 min, 30 sec

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