China National

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Recent Tasting Notes


Very tasty and enjoyable sheng. It is sweet and full-bodied with a bit of cheer. Held up to numerous steepings, lets say at least 8. Perhaps hints of citrus in it. Don’t recall much bitterness at all. Infusion time was between 5-10 sec. Leaves were on the small side, but I understand the cake was packed tightly, as is also the case with the 60 ripe version. Lots of personality to this one. Wife enjoyed it too. Big thumbs up.

Flavors: Sweet

195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 5 OZ / 147 ML

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Oh when it rains it pours…TEA! The aged black tea is super this time of year. It’s initially kind of oily, like messing around with ripe black olives. Comes time for the SIPDOWN! I brewed it traditionally, if you need more info see other tasting notes. It responds alright to the chawan, first time for me this shu is creating a lot of high expectations. Well, it’s just okay. Further steeped, second try this is truly a red tea, just like I was told about in mandarin lessons. It might stain my tea ware but it’s definitely a unique flavor. Tastes smooth with a long lean finish. I need to keep drinking it to have the flavor not change to -unkown-fish taste. China Animal products and imports, yunnan tea branch, maybe was stored next to fish I just don’t know. This will take a while to explain, but anyway I was told by a friend to not try shu pu’ehr until I was absolutely broke. So I don’t have much dough but I have this big honking wheel of tea. I can’t say it’s depressing, because it really isn’t, I might never finish this tea cache. More on the starving artists budget: So I had to have makeshift tea and coffee in college cause of the dorm scene, but I left there after 10 years, and that’s ontop of four years of catholic style boarding school. I can’t tell you haw to deal with poor finances other than buy up some chitse beeng cha regardless of the year. Take care, happy tea imbibing, :)

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Having this for the first time, forgot to add it in from a previous order I made. This is a very tightly packed cake as opposed to some of the other sheng cakes I have. I pried off about 3 tablespoons of leaf to put into the yixing. The first steep after the 10 second wash was way overpowering to me almost bitter and very astringent and overpowering to me. I reduced the steep time for the second cup. It still has a great deal of punch in it with a heavy camphor note. It retains most of the bitterness from the first steep but is a little more palatable now. the brew is still pretty thick with a citrus and grassy mix on the tongue. I will hope this one mellows out in time as it still has a lot of kick in the face notes. Almost a little too strong, but being a sheng I think with this much early kick it will age nicely.

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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It’s a good value for a 10 year old black pu-erh. I picked this one up at Tea Lucky in Taipei, Taiwan. The proprietor carries a large selection of pu-erh, both young and old.
Like most black pu-erhs, this one lacks many of the subtle flavors and richness found in the green pu-erhs.

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