Saturday, July 15, 2006

Puerh Taste Off (Week 2 of 5)

This tasteoff was spearheaded and participated by members of LJ Puerh Community.

2003 Yunnan Fengqing Tea Factory 12 Zodiacs Raw (mini) Beeng Puerh

Tea courtesy of

I may have treated this puerh incorrectly by brewing it as I would any other young raw puerh. I should have given it longer brewing time from the start, instead of the usual short 5-10 seconds at first infusion. A gaiwan was employed with boiling Crystal Geyser spring water, 30s rinse, 2-3 minutes rest, and then 10s, 10s, 20s – realized that the compressed leaves needed help to loosen in the gaiwan – 10s, 15s, 20s, 1m.

The first 3 brews yielded clear light amber liquor with barely noticeable aromas of grass, apricot and a hint of camphor. After loosening the compressed leaves in the gaiwan and gave it a 10s infusion, the liquor turned into cloudy medium amber. The taste expectedly became more powerful with a bit more camphor in the play and lots of green-ness. The tea is not harsh for such a young cake. Weak cha-qi. Neither particularly exciting nor complex, but it is quite pleasant in the morning with breakfast. Aging capability is questionable at best.

2 stars (mg)
Other participants' tasting notes on LJ Puerh Community are

2003 Dadugang Elabora(?) King Tea Biscuit

Tea courtesy of Walt_Park.

This tea was quite pleasant from start (dry form) to the 7th infusion. The dry, compressed leaves was intermixed with dark green, dark brown, and white hairy leaves. It smelled somewhat minty (eucalyptus?) and sweet.

A 4oz gaiwan was used, boiling Crystal Geyser spring water, 20s rinse, 2m rest, and then 10s, 10s, 15s, 15s, 20s, 30s, 45s (rest). The wet leaves had a deep aroma of green forest floor. Slightly sweet smelling, which reminded me of rose wood.

The liquor was light to medium amber in color. Its taste was considerably punchy with bitter gourd-like bitterness. Second infusion was minty, with camphor and slight herbalness. It was cooling in the mouth and had a sweet aftertaste in the back of the throat. The fourth infusion was the most interesting: corn, malt with a pinch of wood and what I thought to be a hint of smoke. Cha qi was quite good. There is no denying that the tea was very young and vegetal throughout. Perhaps it is still too young to be enjoyed casually, but I like its basic qualities.

4 stars (vg)
Other participants' tasting notes on LJ Puerh Community are here.

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