2006 White 2 Tea Old Bear Fangcha

Tea type
Pu-erh Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
Pine, Sap, Smoke, Wood, Bitter, Smooth, Tobacco, Musty, Spicy, Sweet, Wet wood, Peat Moss, Sugarcane, Anise, Smoked
Sold in
Not available
Caffeine
High
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by Relentless Tea
Average preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 5 oz / 145 ml

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11 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Iron compression. Leaf material is mostly black, with a few dull gold bits. Dry leaf smells sweet, woodsy, and slightly smokey. Brewed aroma is, mostly, a heavy campfire smoke, with an underlying...” Read full tasting note
    70
  • “A solid aged sheng. The tea had a pleasant, smoky flavor which didn’t change much over the course of ~15 infusions. While the flavor was not very complex, it was pleasantly rustic with notes of...” Read full tasting note
    71
  • “Pretty much every other review is spot on. A solid, semi aged sheng that’s got a good amount of smokiness to it. I personally can’t stand tightly compressed cakes just for the sake of getting off...” Read full tasting note
    75
  • “Another sample from the Beginners puerh box. The first three steps were lovely, smooth tobacco smoke flavor, no bitterness. If Lapsong is like campfire smoke, this is your grandfathers soothing...” Read full tasting note
    75

From White 2 Tea

2006 Old Bear Fangcha Raw 100g
The Old Bear brick is a smokey, heavy tea that is ideal for tea drinkers who enjoy flavors that are present in Scotch whisky, cigars, and pipe tobacco.
The Old Bear is a 100 gram brick that we found unpackaged in a warehouse. The tight compression of the traditional fangcha [square brick] style served it well, as most pieces are wholly intact. The characteristic smoke of the fangcha has faded slightly, but still carries a punch in the early steeps. The tea is a burly daily drinker for tea drinkers who want some oomph in their cup.

About White 2 Tea View company

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11 Tasting Notes

70
10 tasting notes

Iron compression. Leaf material is mostly black, with a few dull gold bits. Dry leaf smells sweet, woodsy, and slightly smokey. Brewed aroma is, mostly, a heavy campfire smoke, with an underlying sweetness. The sweetness reminds me a bit of tar now. After two washes, I start brewing.Brews up thick, and lubricating. Color wise, it’s sort of a peach-yellow/orange. First sip is smokey. There’s a pine tree sap sweetness to the smoke. Pine tree is actually a perfect descriptor for this tea. That’s about it. There’s very little evolution in this tea.

Flavors: Pine, Sap, Smoke

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 10 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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71
4 tasting notes

A solid aged sheng. The tea had a pleasant, smoky flavor which didn’t change much over the course of ~15 infusions. While the flavor was not very complex, it was pleasantly rustic with notes of wood smoke.

Flavors: Smoke, Wood

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

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75
27 tasting notes

Pretty much every other review is spot on. A solid, semi aged sheng that’s got a good amount of smokiness to it. I personally can’t stand tightly compressed cakes just for the sake of getting off enough for a session without breaking a sweat or stabbing myself, and this brick is nearly as compressed as an actual brick. I know this would have likely aged differently given a different level of compression, but I would give a higher ranking right this second for convenience sake if it was a little less compressed.

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75
36 tasting notes

Another sample from the Beginners puerh box. The first three steps were lovely, smooth tobacco smoke flavor, no bitterness. If Lapsong is like campfire smoke, this is your grandfathers soothing pipe smoke. Subsequent steeps had too much bitterness that overwhelmed the dwindling smoky taste. I’ve added this to my wish list because I am wondering how it will age in the next 5-10 years.

Flavors: Bitter, Smoke, Smooth, Tobacco

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3 tasting notes

In a way, puer, people and animals are alike: every one is different, sometimes unpredictable, slowly fermenting away inside… A major attraction of puer is that its ‘alive.’ So why not anthropomorphise it? Hello, Old Bear!

This bear is up-tight and refuses at first to yield when asked to leap onto the scales. 6.5g in ~90ml yixing made for a potent trip down the forest trail. I ran through it quickly, as if being chased… Yes, there’s a bit of an animal in there. We know this tea is potent and smokey. But I’m a fan of lapsang, rauchbier and Islay whisky.

As much as smoke (more peat and oak than pine or beech – so I disagree with lapsang analogies), I perceive a decent rounding from age and storage, which makes the power of the tea and its latent, but potentially aggressive bush-like flavours quite manageable. Short, cautious steeps yield an enjoyable brew with a pleasantly smooth mouth-feel. The finish is a contest between drying smokiness that reminds me of Laphroaig (a bit like piss and tweed…) and a slight trickling sweetness consistent with the tea’s age and W2T-type storage. As with some comparable whiskies, this tea has the body to back up the smoke (unlike Laphroaig, imho), and I like it.

Pros: potent, enduring and interesting; almost balanced – provided you like a smokey kick. Uplifting.

Cons: heavy on the stomach, despite its 10yrs of age. Occasional flashes of huigan contend with a slight, unpleasant constriction of the throat that reminds me this is likely particularly cheap plantation material. Then again, I’m sure its tough to tame a bear. And really, would we want to?

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89
58 tasting notes

Opening:

When I opened this tea I thought it was very beautiful! However, it’s incredibly compressed. I stabbed myself twice while picking away at it. My partner told me to get stitches even.
Anyways, I also gathered a lot of tea dust trying to pry the damned thing open.

The Infusions:

When I started this session I started a mustiness which only points to humid storage. The rustiness has dried out since the last time I tasted this tea (this is my 3rd session) and is starting to settle down more. I first noticed that this tea tasted like tobacco in its early infusions. The wet leaves smelled like a Cigar Lounge!

In it’s middle infusions, it started to get sweeter. The tobacco started to taste sweeter; even more sweeter than the last time I had a session with Old Bear. There was a lingering aftertaste of wet wood that stayed in my mouth long after sipping the tea.

It’s later infusions started to get a spice to them, and the aftertaste of wet wood started to linger out. In the end, I never tasted ‘bitter’ in this tea. I steeped it at the oolong temp – 176 degrees F. I also noticed that this tea got a strong punch if I over steeped it, so it’s definitely on the more sensitive side.

Conclusion:

Overall, this is a good brick and at a great price as well! I will buy this tea again and i’m really curious about how it’ll age!

*Note: Due to rough storage, some bricks may be 75g instead of the advertised 100g.

Flavors: Musty, Smoke, Spicy, Sweet, Tobacco, Wet wood

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 97 ML

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88
231 tasting notes

From Pu TTB
A nice somewhat smokey (not as smokey as I expected) sheng with pine, tobacco, peat, and sugarcane notes. Obviously not made with the highest quality base material, but a bit of age has made it quite nice. In later steeps the smoke fades and is replaced by more fruity sweetness. This is my first tea I’ve tried from W2T and it definitely exceeded my expectations!

Flavors: Peat Moss, Pine, Smoke, Sugarcane

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 5 OZ / 150 ML
mrmopar

Try the mushroom.

tperez

The classic mushroom or the green one Mr. M? I think I’ll have to try them both!

mrmopar

The classic. Overleaf it a bit and Gong Fu it. Storage was very good one this tea. Pressed pretty tight though.

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1059 tasting notes

Pu’erh TTB 2015 Tea #12

This had the most flavor out of all the W2T that I drank on Sunday. Rather nice taste, but it was a bit darker than I like my pu’erh. I think it’s the flavor that makes this special. It doesn’t seem that 9 years has really mellowed out all of the bitterness, but sometimes that’s okay because with a nice punch you want to feel it

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127 tasting notes

The lapsang of puer

Tasted like a good Zheng Shan Xiao Zhong but unfortunately that was about it. It was a pleasant incense not to over powering that just faded with every brew. I don’t like the blanket descriptor of "smoke"for a group of people that a literal kaleidoscope of scents and flavors smoke seem fairly general anything that is combustible can produce smoke a few pleasant while most are not. This was actually a pleasant incense light silky type smoke. That was until I under poured the steeped it about 15 seconds too long then woooah it was like cheech and chongs van I immediately dumped the cup. Lesson learned do flash steepings and maybe even less leaf/water ratio than normal as this tea has quite the split personality. Sorry for the one dimensional review but I wasnt able to focus and enjoy this tea to discover the nuances of it. The leaf on the tail after the smoke had cleared tasted slightly bitter the kind you would get from a raw kale of other greeny or maybe a spice like fennel/anise/licorice.

This tea for me was too strong for me to enjoy casually by itself but I can see it pairing well with food as I have in the past drank lapsang after a meal with a creamy rich dessert and it really worked well. I enjoy whiskey and pipe tobacco but neither in the middle of the day so too this tea would be a maybe once or twice a year change of pace but I wont lose sleep over not buying a fangcha(as with some of pauls other teas).

Hate to be cliche but the similarities are too strong, if you like lapsang you will like this tea of not then don’t bother. I like a good mild lapsang from time to time but in a black tea not a puer and on very rare ocassions.

Flavors: Anise, Smoked

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Cwyn

I haven’t tried this yet, but now after reading your review I might put it off for awhile. I like smoky tea but have several already.

Jiāng Luo

I read a lot of people like to leave puer in vessels for extended periods of time(hours or even over night) and this would probably be the only tea I would do that with because it is one note but very infusible. It was a pleasant smoke but as you said I have nice quality smoked blacks already so no need to purchase. This would maybe be a tad better if you were to compare apples and oranges because it is cheaper and more infusible but I drink lapsang so infrequent I probably have enough to last me awhile.

Cwyn

Yes, I would leave it in one of my minerally older Yixing pots to take the edge off overnight.

JC

I like this one, it does have the smoke to it, but I don’t find it is aggressive smoke, but its not subtle either. ‘Old Bear’ seems like the perfect name, it tastes like the essence of a person who love to live in the woods and likes old fashioned filling drinks.

Haveteawilltravel

hahah Cheech and Chong’s van….

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49 tasting notes

Temperature: Boiling (Subsequent infusions at 190oF)
Brewing Time: Fifteen seconds ( + five seconds for each subsequent infusion)
Aroma: Smoky
Flavor: Smoky, Malty, Toast, Tobacco and Damp Earth
Tasting Notes: I loved it. It has a nice staying power, according to my notes I got twenty-three infusions out it before I stopped taking notes. This is a tea that you shouldn’t drink if you have things to do, it just has so much to give. I didn’t finish this tea I had stuff to do and frankly it just lasts way to long for me. I have a little left over I might experiment brewing with for longer times. The Smoky tastes starts to disappear after the fifth infusion, but besides that it stays pretty constant. I didn’t notice the taste starting to thin out, which is ridiculous, generally I like to see teas change in later infusions, but I doubt I’d be able to distinguish the sixth infusion from the twentieth.

Definitely worth buying! $18 for 100g is nothing. I haven’t tried the other teas that TwoDog sent me yet, but I have a feeling this might be the one to beat. The bar is set pretty high with this Old Bear, while my only criticism of it is you might get bored since the tea doesn’t get better the more you drink. I am curious if this tea will age well, I generally like young Sheng Puerh, but I wonder if this is type of puerh you want to buy and forget about or the kind you drink immediately.

More at http://rah-tea.blogspot.com/2014/12/white2tea-2006-little-gold-melon-old.html

boychik

i love this one. like drinking whiskey and smoking cigars :)

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