2014 Yunnan Sourcing Ku Zhu Shan

Tea type
Pu-erh Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
Bamboo, Bitter, Broth, Butter, Chicken Soup, Cinnamon, Cream, Drying, Floral, Fruity, Hazelnut, Lemongrass, Parsley, petrichor, Tart, Thick, Umami, Walnut, Wood, Hay, Mineral, Mint, Tobacco, Straw, Wet Moss, Wet Wood, Honey, Plums, Stonefruits
Sold in
Not available
Caffeine
Not available
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by tperez
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 5 oz / 155 ml

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7 Tasting Notes View all

  • “I recently acquired a few pu-erh cakes from boychik, and this is one of them. I didn’t sample it, but given the description of the tea and my experience with YS and similar teas, I was pretty sure...” Read full tasting note
    92
  • “Letting this one air out for a few weeks in between sessions has definitely allowed its unique attributes shine through. The brewed leaves have a wonderful caramelized brown sugar sweet aroma....” Read full tasting note
  • “Got this one out after forgetting to post a note about it a while back. Worthy of a re-do. I got 10 grams out to start this one out with. I am brewing this up in a new Gawain I got at a good price...” Read full tasting note
  • “This is emerging as one of my favorites from my recent sample haul—deserving of a cake purchase. It has some sweetness but it’s definitely a bass rather than a treble tea, most notably in the...” Read full tasting note

From Yunnan Sourcing

Ku Zhu Mountain is near Wenshan village about 7 kilometers southeast of Jing Gu town in Pu’er prefecture (previoiusly known as Simao).

Ku Zhu mountain tea is strong and is much more bitter than their sweeter Yang Ta (another Jing Gu area) counterpart. The taste is something a marriage between Jing Gu and Mengku teas, but entirely unique. From 100+ year old tea trees growing naturally. A premium wild arbor tea with excellent aging possibilities!

400 grams per cake, 7 cakes per bamboo leaf tong

early April harvest (only 70 kilograms produced)

This tea has been tested in a certified laboratory and has passed the MRL limits for pesticide residues as established by the EU Food and Safety commission. For more information about MRL testing and the EU Food and Safety commission

About Yunnan Sourcing View company

Company description not available.

7 Tasting Notes

92
353 tasting notes

I recently acquired a few pu-erh cakes from boychik, and this is one of them. I didn’t sample it, but given the description of the tea and my experience with YS and similar teas, I was pretty sure I’d like it and I wasn’t mistaken. This 5 year old tea impressed me quite a bit already in my first session with it. I would summarize it as having a fairly unique and complex aroma, pungent yet balanced taste, and a thick buttery mouthfeel.

The dry leaf smell has notes of aromatic wood and spices like cinnamon. It is a very clean and somewhat sweet aroma that I can’t get enough of. From the wet leaves, I get scents like fresh hazelnut, petrichor, and parsley.

Already the rinse makes a strong impression with strong umami. It tastes of chicken broth, fresh bamboo, and butter. The mouthfeel after swallowing is very interesting too – oily, slick and slightly drying. Subsequent infusions become progressively more bitter and pungent. They have more of a floral quality with a bit of fruitiness that reminds me of carambola and lemongrass. After the peak, the taste profile gets more creamy and I can detect some very light smokiness. The aftertaste stays for a long time and evolves quite a bit. It is nutty and aromatic, with a cooling sensation in the throat.

As for the mouthfeel, it starts soft, drying and buttery, but later becomes more active and bubbly. In this session, I didn’t detect a particularly strong cha qi, but I do think the tea helped declutter my mind. I look forward to the future progression of this new item in my line-up.

Flavors: Bamboo, Bitter, Broth, Butter, Chicken Soup, Cinnamon, Cream, Drying, Floral, Fruity, Hazelnut, Lemongrass, Parsley, petrichor, Tart, Thick, Umami, Walnut, Wood

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 3 OZ / 90 ML
Martin Bednář

Sounds like interesting tea for me. Wishlist in!

mrmopar

This is a good one.

tanluwils

This was one of those transitional teas for me when I was still new to sheng pu’er. Loved that bitterness!

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142 tasting notes

Letting this one air out for a few weeks in between sessions has definitely allowed its unique attributes shine through. The brewed leaves have a wonderful caramelized brown sugar sweet aroma. Since then it has grown on me.

With 7 grams in a 100g gaiwan, it’s quite complex in its flavors, textures, and sensations. It has excellent body, mouth feel, and expansive huigan with a cooling and almost numbing sensation. Prominent flavors are minty, sweet tobacco, complex woody notes, bitter melon, and roasted brown sugar. Smoke is almost absent and completely disappears after initial steeps. Sweet flowery notes dominate the first two steeps. Steeps 4 to 10 or so are characterized by straight up bitterness with sweet and savory accents.

After that it coasts with for seemingly endless smooth, mellow, and savory sweet steeps. Impressive consistent energy that doesn’t cause drowsiness or upset the stomach. The tea soup is a clear and deep golden hue.

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295 tasting notes

Got this one out after forgetting to post a note about it a while back. Worthy of a re-do.
I got 10 grams out to start this one out with. I am brewing this up in a new Gawain I got at a good price from a friend, bounteaful from Instagram.
I brewed it up after a wash and a period for the tea to open up. The first brews were a bit thin so I let it rest a bit longer. I went went some longer steeps from it and it was a full on brew from there.
It actually brews darker than some of my older teas, a gold with that I’m turning the corner on the aging process.
This tea became very thick. Notes of veggies, some mintiness and a good hit of nit you biterness. It has a note of butter and tobacco as others have notated. This is not the subtle one that you drop on your new tea people to drink but the experienced ones will enjoy this I think. The huigan is really nice as you can taste it for a while after drinking it.
The aromas of mineral rocks and some wet hay in there as well.
Nice invigorating tea.
On a side note. A new friend has joined our site and looking for some people to follow and followers as well.
stock man. From Spain and hoping to share our experiences and notes on here.

Flavors: Bitter, Butter, Hay, Mineral, Mint, Tobacco, Wood

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 10 g 10 OZ / 295 ML

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189 tasting notes

This is emerging as one of my favorites from my recent sample haul—deserving of a cake purchase. It has some sweetness but it’s definitely a bass rather than a treble tea, most notably in the smokey, pine forest taste that really stood out to me this time. This tea deserves attention: one can parse out a panoply of interesting textures and flavors. And as someone that can handle pretty strong shengs, I can tell you that this one provides a pretty potent high.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 7 g 4 OZ / 130 ML
Charles Thomas Draper

I agree with you

jschergen

I like this one too. One of the better values and a standout + good value tea.

Stephanie

Nice, nice

mrmopar

Fantastic tea and excellent dollar value.

Doug F

@jschergen Would you consider eot’s Yuanwei a good value at $90 for a 200 gram cake?

jschergen

I’d say it’s a fair value and a good tea. Not a deal IMO.

According to my tastes, the best value in the $0.35/g+ range YQH teas Emmett is coordinating.

jschergen

To be clear. Above comment is talking about the YuanWei, and not the Kuzhu.

Doug F

Thanks James! Sorry, what does YQH stand for?

DigniTea

Yang Qing Hao (also translated as Yan Qing Hao). A few of us have taken part in group orders placed by Emmett through a TeaChat posting.

DigniTea

High quality YiWu productions. James mentioned one (mid-way down the page) in a YiWu report.
http://teadb.org/slightly-aged-yiwu-puerh-june-2015-report/

Doug F

Thanks DigniTea!

jschergen

Yep, thanks Dignitea. Feel free to shoot me a PM/email if you want more details.

curlygc

I nearly got in on one of those YQH buys, but I didn’t pull the trigger b/c there was no way to sample the tea before plunking down a couple hundred bucks for cake. I don’t mind spending money on tea I know I like. I wish YQH tea was more available here. I’ll probably end up regretting my decision!

jschergen

Maybe buy the cheapest and ask Emmett to send you samples :)? Pretty sure you wouldn’t regret it. I understand the concerns though. Some really good teas.

curlygc

@jschergen: I did ask him, but he didn’t get back to me and I didn’t pester him about it. I was considering the 05 TsangLiu. Grill said he’d put samples in the TTB, so I will eventually get to try it. I just don’t know if the opportunity to purchase it will happen again!

jschergen

Been messaging Emmett just today. Should be happening next month :).

TsangLiu is a very solid tea. There’s also a 2007 tuo that’s something like $130/300g that’s also quite good if you want to try the bare minimum.

curlygc

Ohhh! Maybe I can get in on the next buy then. Thanks for letting me know :-)

jschergen

No prob. Hope you get to enjoy these teas!

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83
41 tasting notes

Is this really from near Jing Gu? As Hobbes has written, neighboring fields in Burgundy can have different terroire… Its really quite low and savory, not very much at all like its overtly sweet and floral neighbor. There are notes of tobacco, barn-straw, wet forest floor and damp moss. There is some smoke and it seems a bit rough around the edges, not overly so though. A faint whisper of Jing Gu’s pungency lingers in the background. I am enjoying this, it’s quite unique, and there’s just enough thickness and sweetness to float the savory/nature qualities described above. I think some age would do this cake a lot of good.

Edit: having this again, from a Yi Xing this time, it seems to have more Jing Gu vanilla and additional sweetness. Weird what little changes can do to the experience of a tea. Still plenty bitter, punchy, viscous.

Flavors: Straw, Tobacco, Wet Moss, Wet Wood

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83
187 tasting notes

Dry – Sweet, plummy, woody-vegetal(green), faint floral.
Wet – Sweet, plummy, Thick(in brothy way), savory-bitter, wood-raisins, honey, tart berries and stone fruits >> Later develops a bit of tobacco notes.

1st 4secs – Sweet, thick, vegetal with corn in butter notes, followed by melon/white peach sweetness and very mellow floral (with vegetal) with a tongue numbing thickness and mouth watering bitterness.

2nd 7secs – Sweet, thick(but meh), some vegetal notes but mostly sweet followed by a melon sweetness and a gentle bitterness that waters the mouth(very apparent, yet not aggressive, it lingers for a long time and lodges in the back of the tongue), some astringency. The aftertaste reminded me of the aftertaste of clementines.

3rd 7secs – Sweet, thick, vegetal, bitter floral followed by melon sweetness, stone fruits, the bitterness lingers and lodges, mouth watering, mineral and flroal notes and slowly becoming tobaccoey-herbal.

4th 9secs – Sweet, thick, bitter, astringency, vegetal… perhaps better balanced than previous steeps. All the notes are there but none over take the other.

5th 11secs – Mostly the same profile as before, not as balanced. The ‘brothy’ character was more up front in the beginning, but this tea is definitely in the fruity spectrum of Puerh bitterness with vegetal and floral notes (very faint tobacco).

6h 15secs – (The collapse steep) I’ve had three sessions with this tea and they agree this is the range when the tea collapses. The notes are there, but they all are weak, phantoms of what they were.

Did up to 10-11 steeps

Final Notes
The three sessions were experimenting with temp and time and the results where roughly the same, the 6th ended up being the subtle or not so subtle decline in notes. The mouth-feel was nice the whole time and the huigan was particular with an almost citrus note, but it lacks longevity, after the 6th it mostly delivers bitter notes and ghosts of everything else. I’ll come back to this one later.

Flavors: Bitter, Butter, Honey, Plums, Stonefruits

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 6 g 4 OZ / 130 ML
tanluwils

I haven’t brewed this with the yixing yet, but I would only slightly disagree on the longevity note. After the 6th or so steep, I find this one releases a certain, nicely thick, mellowed smooth brown sugar/fruity sweetness with mineral notes mixed in.

Gosh, I really should be getting back to work…

JC

LOL! get back to work man. I may go back to this one to retry it, I’ll haven’t had the best sessions lately since my tea table drain broke and I can’t do proper gong fu. I’ll try to revisit it, but I have to admit at least from my sample longevity was sort of short, as I said, might be the lack of proper sessions.

tanluwils

Ugh, I know…I’m way too easily distracted by gu shu!

Longevity could also be determined with how much leaf you use. Sounds trite, but I think it’s easy to make mistakes without a scale, which is what I added to my last YS purchase. I remember my last session with the sample being particularly pleasurable since I may have used at least 9 g of leaf in a 120 ml gaiwan. By steep 12 the gaiwan lid was partially sitting on brewed leaves.

I need to start taking physical notes during each session with samples. Relying on rigorous notes is usually better than impression alone.

JC

I agree. I have a scale that is really useful for when I’m setting parameters, I admit I ignore it when I’m familiarized with the tea, but its not a bad idea to measure after you take out the tea you are going to use. That’s how I discovered I prefered an slightly over leafed Huang Shan Raw, I think that tea lives through its bitter notes.

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