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Topic: Pu of the Day

Since we've got daily Pu drinkers here, why don't we share our takes of our daily drinkers... here's what I've been brewing the past 10 days.

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Tea: 1996/1997 Jing Qua Gong Cha Shu Tuo

Origin: Ji Xiang Pai now known as Jing Fan Tea Factory, Kunming.

Storage: Stored in Malaysia most of its life.

The tuo was compact but loosely held together. The leaves show a golden brown colour. The thin paper wrapper tears easily, at the same time allowing good air ventilation.

There’s no need for excessive force to be used to break off a chunk. The tea come off easily with a light push with the Pu Knife. They are dry and I had it aired daily for 10 days at RH 55% - 60%, 27C to 30C. The colour of the tea leaves and dryness of the pu indicates that the tuo had been stored under proper conditions and care.

I used a 150ml standard shui ping. Early 1980s clay and workmanship. Jing Xi Hui Men Chen era, coupled with a 50s/60s porcelain teacup (50ml).

http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3472/3800045701_291ef0f82c.jpg

Colour: Deep red, clear, but dark.... rich looking, turning lighter as the brews continue.

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Aroma: Woody with a slight onset of aged aroma.

Flavour: Upfront, assertive, deep wood, no malt... the onset of the aged (herb-like) aroma, is just starting to form. A few more good years of storage and we’re all set to go!

Mouthfeel: whole, full, smooth, lingering...

Huigan: Slight, then a slight sweet ending... making you want to salivate.

I'm on to the 6th brew now, and the tea is still going good... I'm brewing each round for 30 - 45 seconds, using boiling water, getting one medium sized cup (50ml) per round. While the aroma diminish slightly with every brew, the smoothness and sweetness of the tea broth remains unrivaled.

Summary:

Smooth, no astringency at all, starting to exhibit some aging aroma. Would go back for more.


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2 (edited by AdamYusko 2009-08-18 20:12:19)

Re: Pu of the Day

Today I'm having the 1980's Wang Zi loose leaf Sheng from Nada.

I'm about a third through my 300 gram bag.

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It brews up a dark reddish black, with hints of brown.

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And makes a very spicy infusion at first.  With quite a decent amount of weight just sticking to your mouth.

It lightens up considerably in later infusions.  I've gotten pepper soup in some of the early infusions when I hit it just right, kinda surprising when it happens actually.

Brandon wrote this up on Teachat

My post on this tea

My post is on my blog, which is actually a very long post, as it was a 4 day event comparing between two different waters.


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Re: Pu of the Day

Technically this is pu of the yesterday, but who's counting. Tea with Zhou Yu (周渝) and his wife Sophie Lin (林慧峰) of Wisteria Tea House (紫藤廬) and family, who were kind enough to share some tea with us while visiting the greater Los Angeles area. This is only the second time I've been lucky enough to be treated to so much amazing old tea in one day!

[click for larger image]
2003 Yi Wu mini-tuo produced by Zhou Yu
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Mid-80s Fangcha (80年代 方茶)
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3471/3832146517_2ffb1724f3.jpg
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50s "no-wrapper" Hong Yin (50年代 無紙 紅印) and tea broth
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3463/3832941008_37a418f0b4.jpg

I believe this is the dry leaves of 30s shuanghua (双花, pair of flowers) tea, but I could be wrong:
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3576/3832146661_d1b45a2ec1.jpg

We also had some other tea that I don't have good pictures of.

Group shot:
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2426/3832146795_a2c9e3ffd7.jpg
(L-R) Yu's brother Tsen, Susan, Sophie Lin, Louise, Me (foreground), Zhou Yu, Nick, Mindy

I will try to post some more words or pictures somewhere.

Re: Pu of the Day

Sounds like an amazing days worth of tea Will.

How was the Hong Yin? Did it live up to the legend?


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Re: Pu of the Day

AdamYusko wrote:

How was the Hong Yin? Did it live up to the legend?

I don't know how to describe it. I hate describing the taste of teas in words. I have been fortunate enough to have had it before (twice, though not brewed quite as strong as I'd like either time). To be honest, based on taste alone (not on qi or how it made my body feel), I preferred the taste of the 60s ba-zhong huang yin that was served at the Pasadena tasting (Master Zhou just happened to have some of this tea along as well, and was kind enough to break off a little chunk for us to try at a later date). I find it hard to step away from the "I'm drinking tea that's worth at least US $6-12k/357g" frame. Plus, given that chances to drink something of this sort are rare, I have little frame of reference. To me the taste has similarities to shu (only to the extent that you can see how shu is trying to imitate a well aged tea), but it's more subtle and refined. The differences between the loose 50s tea and the hong yin were present, but subtle (I think maybe a little more medicinal quality and more camphor in the latter, unless I'm getting things mixed up). Because teas from this age have probably had some humid storage at some point, there is a little bit of a storage taste in the background, but not in an unpleasant way... time seems to balance things out a little. There's an earthy, wet leaves kind of flavor and aroma. There is a taste that seems to be common to a lot of the really old pu'er I've tried, but I don't know really how to describe it in words.

I have never had an "ahhhhhhh" kind of moment with this tea of the sort that some people describe, but sometimes the best teas are more noticeable for their absence of flaws than for the ringing of bells in your ears. The other thing I've noticed is that even though I quickly forget exactly how the tea tasted, I notice that other teas I have afterwards don't measure up, or notice that I'm craving having the tea again.

So yes, drinking hong yin is always an interesting (and lucky) experience, but I can't easily put into words why and how, and it's really hard to tell how much of it is psychological. It's hard not to be at least somewhat influenced when you know you're drinking something that's expensive, famous, and sought after by connoisseurs.

I was really impressed by the feeling that I got from the 30s shuanghua... I don't know if it was psychological (because he said it would be calming), but it really did seem to make everyone more mellow and calm, and I felt more relaxed and calm. I notice this a lot with pu'er - certain teas make me irritable or cranky even when I'm not, and other teas make me feel relaxed and at ease. I've been brewing the spent leaves from the 30s tea for a couple of days now. It's not strong at all anymore, but it's a pleasant reminder of the afternoon and of the taste.

Master Zhou's brewing technique was also impressive. He makes it seem effortless, but (as Jason put it), he "never brews a bad cup". His style doesn't come across as fussy at all - he never seems to be paying attention to how long the water has been boiling or exactly how hard, or how high he's pouring from. Everything comes across as pretty understated and natural, though it's clear he's thinking about the things that are important, like the quality of the water, or the type of cup.

Even my girlfriend, who makes a big deal of being very un-snobbish about tea, said her tea at work tasted lackluster in comparison to that afternoon.


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Re: Pu of the Day

i bought this cake from scott last year in 2008 and had my second session with it today :
   
2006 Feng Hua "Qi Cha" * Raw Pu-erh Tea of Yong De

http://cgi.ebay.ca/2006-Feng-Hua-Qi-Cha … .m14.l1262

for a 2006 production, the leaves are really dark looking, the brew is also a pretty dark brown and it tastes like black tea, no bitterness at all even when slightly oversteeped.  i really like this cake, it offers a totally different taste compared to other young green pu.

Re: Pu of the Day

Today I'm having another 1980's Tea from Nada.

This is the 1980's Daye Loose leaf.

First thing I'd like to note is, that with the size of these leaves, if you like your tea brewed somewhat strong you need to pack the pot or gaiwan full, since the leaves do not fit together very nicely and often have lots of space between them, so a pot that looks packed, would be about half full of smaller sized leaf. To give an idea after the leaves get wet, they only fill half the pot then slowly swell to 2/3rds full.

I also condone packing the pot as much as possible, as this tea is a bit on the weak side, but when made strong it has a rather pleasing taste.

It's actually been quite a while since I've had some Puerh, but I'm hoping to get back in the habit, and I'm looking forward to three samples from Hou De, of classic recipes.


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Re: Pu of the Day

http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5218/5474764651_2e3849832a_m.jpg

Having random "house blend" young sheng (2004~2007) composed of odds and ends of purchased samples.

The result is always a surprise. Today's brew has a kind of hong cha aftertaste to it, malty and metallic like second flush assam. I wonder what's causing that?

~j

"Beware the man of one book" ~Thomas Aquinas

Re: Pu of the Day

Good to see this thread coming back!

I drank the Menghai 2002 "Natural Habitat" (bok choy picture) mini-bing. Expensive, and, as marshaln says, probably over-priced, but still a very pleasant tasting tea. I didn't get the characteristic Banzhang bitterness in the first steep after 2 rinses, and then on the second brew.... whoomp, it hit me. Brewing a little darker than I expected for a 2002 cake with fairly dry storage. I enjoyed this, but glad I only have one piece (at $75/200g cake).

Not exactly puer, but yesterday had a blend of 1970s - 1980s guang yun gong (sample from a tea friend). Really delicious stuff. Absolute lack of bitterness, sharpness, astringency, mustyness, and a very pleasant sweet and medicinal taste. Plus it brewed dark and thick, and lasted forever. The original price of this blend was pretty cheap, and even now, the price is not bad.


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Re: Pu of the Day

http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5173/5477049892_769595f10d.jpg

2009 Lancang 0081 shu cake in my cup for the fourth (fifth?) time this month. It's thinner and rockier drinking it here at work, but still a great value, IMO. I've updated my tasting notes on my blog here: http://puerh.blogspot.com/2010/11/2009- … -bing.html

~j

"Beware the man of one book" ~Thomas Aquinas

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Re: Pu of the Day

http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5016/5480318448_6913c14e09.jpg

2009 Dayi 69th Anniversary Cake in my cup today after finishing off the last few brews of a shu blend I was drinking last night.

It's buttery and only really bitter if oversteeped, despite having some pretty broken leaves. There's a green olive taste that reminds me of lincang tea. The texture is kind of thin unless brewed right at boiling. At boiling, it's thicker and has some throat feeling. Below boiling, it's sweeter, thinner, and bready.

~j

"Beware the man of one book" ~Thomas Aquinas