2013 Yunnan Sourcing "Wu Liang Ye Sheng" Raw

Tea type
Pu-erh Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
Citrus, Floral, Hay, Lemon, Orchid, Smooth, Sweet, Butter, Camphor, Honey Dew
Sold in
Not available
Caffeine
Not available
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by mrmopar
Average preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 8 g 4 oz / 123 ml

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15 Tasting Notes View all

  • “I had all these detailed notes typed up but then I closed the window accidentally. Oh well. Here’s the gist. Lid/leaves smell: started off with bright grassiness, some floral, moved onto deeper...” Read full tasting note
  • “Haven’t posted anything on here in a while. The summer’s been a little rough, what with my depression poking its head back up and starting on new meds etc. Anyway, things have been getting better,...” Read full tasting note
    87
  • “Used the entire 8.6g sample I received of this from Liquid Proust in a 100mL gaiwan. That’s a bit more than I normally use for sheng, so I was worried it’d be way too strong. Instead, I was...” Read full tasting note
    94
  • “After a dozen of session with this, I can write about it :) This was my second full cake I ever bought. I made that purchase based on the pictures and reviews; a mild pu’erh with a beautiful look...” Read full tasting note

From Yunnan Sourcing

2013 YS Wu Liang Ye Sheng Raw 400g
Entirely “ye sheng” varietal tea from the highest reaches of the Wu Liang mountains. Growing above 2000 feet these wild tea bushes range from 50 to 200 years old. We had originally asked for 100 kilograms of this wonderful tea but it’s so rare and due to dry weather, we were only able to get 60 kilograms!

Rich thick flavor, without much bitterness. This is the most delicate wild tree purple teas I have ever tasted! Nice comfortable cha qi with no edge. Can be infused many times.

Pressed by stone press and wrapped in hand-made paper from Xishuangbanna!

400 grams per cake (7 cakes per bamboo leaf tong)

About Yunnan Sourcing View company

Company description not available.

15 Tasting Notes

33 tasting notes

I had all these detailed notes typed up but then I closed the window accidentally. Oh well. Here’s the gist.

Lid/leaves smell: started off with bright grassiness, some floral, moved onto deeper wetter grassy smell with a little spice.

Taste: Started with hay and butter with nice texture and body. Steeps 3-5ish developed a nice savory and nutty flavor (similar to notes I get from Verdant’s gan zao ye which is a really interesting herbal “tea”). Steeps 6 and beyond continued to have nice flavor but didn’t develop much further. I’m on steep 9-10 or something and still going. Aftertaste and throat feel were very nice and deep in the throat through most of the steeps. Got some really nice cha qi late on too.

Since I’m new to puer, I’m trying to stick to less expensive teas in order to allow myself to sample a broader spectrum so I probably won’t be buying a cake of this even though it’s a really nice tea.

Special thanks to matu for this sample.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 7 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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87
35 tasting notes

Haven’t posted anything on here in a while. The summer’s been a little rough, what with my depression poking its head back up and starting on new meds etc. Anyway, things have been getting better, mostly, and I’ve been having these long sun-dappled sheng sessions in the backyard. Most people would give me weird looks if I explained how much just enjoying tea can give life back its color, especially on the worst days. But I’m guessing you guys on here can relate :)

So yeah, about the tea itself—I drank this for a couple hours after work. Started off very sweet, like a honey sweetness. This moved into more musty sour-sweet territory, with a hint of bitterness. I didn’t get any of the apricot notes I had before—might be a difference in water temperature? Anyway, it was still lovely. For the last steep (probably number 18? 20?) I let the tea steep for 30 minutes with warm water, and ended up with a super-thick, sweet brew. It was like thin syrup consistency, with a tiny bit of a bitter kick. I’ve never really had tea this thick before—didn’t think it was possible. I love having these new discoveries, especially on a summer afternoon

mrmopar

This one is really nice.

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94
411 tasting notes

Used the entire 8.6g sample I received of this from Liquid Proust in a 100mL gaiwan. That’s a bit more than I normally use for sheng, so I was worried it’d be way too strong. Instead, I was treated to a wonderfully mellow session with this tea. One of my favorite shengs yet. I was surprised by the clarity of the citrus notes throughout this tea (having never encountered these in sheng before), but especially in the first few steeps. These first 3 or so steeps were citrus in the front and hay on the back of the sip, with relatively little body but a soft texture. After this, the citrus flavor became a bit less sharp, the hay morphed into a sweet floral flavor (orchid maybe), and the body thickened up a bit. This tea went on in this beautiful way for ~16 steeps, all of which were very pleasureable.

No bitterness at all in this tea. Not even very much mouth drying effect. It was very refreshing and reminded me somewhat of drinking warm fruit juice. I will seriously consider picking up a cake of this with my next big YS order. Has anybody had the 2014 or 2015 versions of this one (assuming they exist)? I might have to try samples from those cakes as well to see how they compare.

Thanks again for the raw pu samples, LP! :)

Flavors: Citrus, Floral, Hay, Lemon, Orchid, Smooth, Sweet

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 8 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
mrmopar

This is a good one.

Matu

I absolutely agree

mrmopar

Hard o believe its a purple tea. Most are so bitter. It takes a while to get the bitter to subside in most of these. This was easy drinking from the get go.

Matu

This is my first purple tea. Perhaps when I get one that displays the normal bitter characteristic I’ll be a bit shocked now lol.

mrmopar

I have a 2007 HaiWan that is still bitter.

Rasseru

RuiA gave me a sample of another purple puerh that is now sold out from YS. I thought it was wonderful. Tingling mouth but not badly bitter or anything, in fact very complex

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1098 tasting notes

After a dozen of session with this, I can write about it :)

This was my second full cake I ever bought. I made that purchase based on the pictures and reviews; a mild pu’erh with a beautiful look :)
This sheng brews so beautiful because it can be controlled by the user :)
This doesn’t have the punch that the 2012 Wild Monk has, but it surely has the color and a comparable taste. I’ve sent this to a few people to explore the lighter side of raw puerh with hopes that they will enjoy it as much as I do.

Instead of writing about my methods and ending notes from each session, just look at this tea porn: https://www.instagram.com/p/9pC8CwRYMI/

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85
11 tasting notes

Good one! Starts with a hint of sour, hay, something familiar can’t place it.
Nice, mellow in a good way, but strong, does that make sense?
Stays nice earthy, mellow, mild tart of citrus, eventually into something like cherry or raisin in the aftertaste.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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72
131 tasting notes

Dark dried leaves are largely intact and spindly. I placed 7 grams in a 100 ml gaiwan and allowed the leaves steeped after the rinse to sit for a few mins. Steeped leaves are highly fragrant—ripe grapes and star fruit. Initial steeps are very fruity and rose-y (like rose hips). That robust purple pu’er tea astringency is almost absent in the medley of sweet flavors. It remains a delicate tea with an almost decadent mouth feel and gentle, but very present, cha qi. While this one is much softer and approachable than the Dehong purple tea, I actually prefer the latter for its sharper notes.

Edit: Having tried this several times, I figured out why I prefer the Dehong purple over this one. I actually dislike that unique (kind of herbal) flavor present in all purple pu’er. This flavor seems to stand out more in the Wuliang due to the lack of sharp bitterness that is present in the Dehong. While tasty in its own right, and despite my positive review, I’m not a fan of this tea.

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92
19 tasting notes

https://hotleafjuicetea.wordpress.com/2015/02/21/2013-wu-liang-ye-shiang-from-yunnan-sourcing/

What is the most bitter tea that exists?

Reali-tea. Ouch.

Ah, the “tea joke” threads on Steepster and TeaChat never get old.

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I am a big fan of purple tree puerh teas, although most of my readers out there in Tea Blog Land will probably disagree with me. Purple puerhs have a reputation for being super powerful and bitter. I should start by mentioning that this particular tea is not bitter at all. However, this reputation that purple puerh holds brings up an important idea. In my opinion, bitterness should be embraced, not feared. Tea with more bitter characteristics can be enjoyed just as much as dark chocolate, IPA beer, coffee, or Chinese bitter melon. Of course, I’m not referring to the bitterness that comes from oversteeping teas. Rather, it is important to simply enjoy the more bitter nature that some teas, such as some varieties of puerhs or Japanese greens, naturally hold.

A major reason for our natural distaste for bitter foods and drinks comes from cultural influences. In Bitter: A Taste of the World’s Most Dangerous Flavor, Jennifer McLagan investigates why some cultures such as China and other East Asian nations tend to love bitter tastes, while North Americans and Western Europeans tend to steer far away. I definitely recommend reading this book. It will open up your eyes to the importance of bitterness.

I will admit that some purple puerhs taste a bit like dipping your tongue into a vat of arsenic (made that mistake…never again). But this tea is something special. This I the only purple puerh I’ve ever had without barely trace of that punching bitterness.

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The cake I received looks just like the photo from Yunnan Sourcing. Mine is a bit more mangled of course. Puerh is not like fast food, where you get some gross crap that looks nothing like what is advertised. With puerh, you get exactly what you ordered. Thanks Yunnan Sourcing!

This 2013 Wu Liang Ye Shiang from Yunnan Sourcing came into my life somewhat haphazardly. I was gifted an Amazon gift card a few months back, and I wasn’t sure what to spend on it. Luckily I stumbled upon Yunnan Sourcing’s Amazon store. They only offered perhaps six or seven different cakes on their Amazon storefront. After I received my order, I noticed that the Yunnan Sourcing Amazon page disappeared from the world. Hmm, not sure what that’s about.

Out of the cakes that Yunnan Sourcing offered, the 2013 Wu Liang Ye Shiang jumped out to me. Once I read the words “wild tree purple,” the tea was in my cart.

This cake is made entirely of Ye Sheng varietal tea leaves. According to some Internet research, Ye Sheng or 野生, refers to a subspecies of Camellia sinensis assamica. This is a naturally occurring varietal found only in Yunnan Province, China. The Ye Sheng tea plant is naturally bug repellent, which might explain its powerful nature. The tea for this cake was picked from bushes above 2000 feet in elevation, and between 50 and 200 years old. The tea leaves are from a farm in Jingdong County, which is inside of Pu’er Prefecture, also known as Simao Prefecture, which is in Southern Yunnan, China. Wow, that was complicated.

I could not find any explanation for why exactly the tea is purple, but I can make an educated guess thanks to my small knowledge of plant biology and plant physiology. Since these tea leaves are grown at a very high elevation, they are exposed to more UV (ultraviolet) light. UV light is represented by the purple part of the color spectrum. The leaves likely turn purple as a natural defense mechanism in order to reflect some of this UV light and protect the plant from some of these UV rays. Plants often have defense mechanisms like this, turning purple due to a buildup of anthocyanins in the leaves. Or perhaps it is all just a quirky genetic variation. If you know the answer to this, tell us all about it in the comments.

Dry Leaf

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I weighed out 8.4 grams of the puerh to use in my gaiwan. The leaves are very dark purple with some larger green leaves sticking out. The leaves are very large and lightly compressed.

The dry leaf smells very smoky and fruity. The fruity note is incredible strong…you can even smell it through the paper label. To me, it smells very much like stone fruits, perhaps plums or cherries.

Teaware

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I used my favorite gaiwan, which I purchased at Dobra Tea in Portland, Maine. Isn’t he/she beautiful?

Sadly, my gaiwan took a bit of a tumble. When I was washing the gaiwan before this review, I dropped the lid and it bounced off my sink. Somehow, the Tea Gods graced my presence and the lid managed to escape unscathed. Phew, that would have been devastating.

The cup and tea coaster are from the Tea Ave sampler that went out last week. I will review those teas next week, once the pricing comes out!

Brewed Tea

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I gave this puerh two quick rinses. I went with a 5 second steep to start, and then increased by 5 or 10 seconds each steep.

These photos are of the third and fourth steeps. The third steep came out a beautiful golden straw color.

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This tea is very complex. It is very mellow and delicate for a wild tree purple puerh. If I tasted this blindfolded, I would have never guessed this tea is only a year or two old.

Although the tea smelled very smoky, the brewed tea has barely a trace of smoke flavor. The main flavors that I picked up on were very intense stone fruit tastes, just like the smell suggested. The cherry and plum notes are so noticeable here that you definitely can’t miss them. There is also a pleasant sour, tart note on the finish that many other reviewers noted. Some tea writers described this as a lemony taste, which I would agree with.

The most noticeable aspect of this tea is the incredible thick mouthfeel. The tea coats your mouth with a rich buttery taste, similar to the sensation of drinking a quality high mountain Taiwanese oolong. I couldn’t get enough of the creamy mouthfeel. Awesome!

Once steeped, the leaves looked much more green than they did in their dry form. The steeped puerh leaves look pretty much the same as any other puerh tea.

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By the eighth steep, the color has lightened up quite a bit but the taste is still just as strong.

Finished Leaf

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I got about 10 steeps out of these leaves. I am drinking a few more steeps of the tea right now, and it is still going strong! The leaves were quite varied in size. Some of the leaves were huge, and some were tiny and appeared chopped up. I’ve never seen puerh leaves with such mixed colors.

Conclusion

This tea offers a great introduction into the world of purple puerhs. This cake was $41 for 400 grams, which I suppose is sort of the mid level of young sheng pricing. I really enjoy this cake, and would buy it again. This is one of the best sheng puerhs I have had! I love this tea, and I am looking forward to enjoying this cake for the next few months. Luckily I’ve got about 390 grams left!

“Coffee is not my cup of tea” ~Samuel Goldwyn

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 9 g 5 OZ / 147 ML
mrmopar

It’s a nice one for sure!

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90
2815 tasting notes

This sample was sent to me by a Steepster friend. It is a really nice sheng, I am enjoying it this morning. For such a young tea, it is pretty mellow. It has some really great flavors, it’s lemony, sweet, melon, floral and a tiny bit of smoke. There was a small bit of bitterness in the first two steeps that has mostly gone away now that I’ve reached steep #3 and #4. Mostly it’s sweet! It’s good to have some shengs that don’t knock you over with harshness. The price is still reasonable too (today it’s $39.00 for a 400g cake).

I am tempted to buy the cake, just not sure if it would fit in my mailbox and otherwise the post office will lose it… :( Anyway I am really glad I got to try this one!

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec
Stephanie

YS always gets me with the high shipping costs…I keep almost ordering and then not :(

JC

This was me two days ago :P

mrmopar

Not bad for a purple bud for sure.

TeaBrat

Are the purple buds supposed to be on the stronger side? I don’t know much about them.

DeliriumsFrogs

I keep doing the same exact thing Stephanie…. I make a cart up, see the shipping, and back away from my computer. lol (their teaware is SO REASONABLY priced, though! A few of the cup sets have me drooling…and those are definitely worth the shipping cost…)

JC

Purple varietals are not my thing, but I’ve come to respect them. I find them to be a lot more ‘throaty’ than your regular Puerh and with age usually delivers a ‘darker’ sweetness, to me like dates raisins with a lingering tart in the back of the throat. I like Puerh versions, but I have to admit I can’t stomach the black tea made out of them so far.

TeaBrat

Dragon Tea House has free shipping, I am just saying… they are one of my favorite vendors at the moment.

DeliriumsFrogs

I haven’t heard of them! Thanks, TeaBrat! Gonna’ go check them out right now. :)

JC

Don’t do this TeaBrat! I’m trying to save LOL!

TeaBrat

DeliriumFrogs – you are welcome :)
JC – you came to the wrong place mwa ha ha!

JC

Damn you!… It would be a mortal wound if you.. provided the link :D

mrmopar

Purple buds can be bitter on the palate but this one is amazing. So easy to drink and very sweet!

JC

I think I may have an unopened sample of this one, maybe I should give it a try soon. I’ve mostly had purple bud as black tea and well.. not for me, but I’ve had good Puerh so far. If you have other recommendations keep ’em coming!

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80
91 tasting notes

8 grams in a gaiwan this time and bang! The liquor is very thick in the mouth; the lemons are much fuller, more bitter and the base is thicker and more woody.

Preparation
8 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
mrmopar

I like this one too. Very nice to be a purple leaf.

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95
188 tasting notes

Shut the door!!!! Another sample gift from “PUG”. Mellow, straw, pertol, honey flavors a touch of appropriate bitterness and a slam dunk sheng. The steeps were 15, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 75, 90, 120, 150, 180, 240. This made for a thicker and more flavorful brew but it certainly did not disuade. Could easily drink this every day. I enjoyed the cha qi, as it was; easy on, easy off, no jarring or jitters.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 15 sec 11 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
boychik

i had it yesterday. love it!!!

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