Yunnan SourcingEdit Company
Popular Teas from Yunnan SourcingSee All 2727 Teas
Popular Teaware from Yunnan SourcingSee All
Recent Tasting Notes
Elegant, refined and powerful shou that I brewed quickly (~20s) for many steeps. Chinese medicine aroma, complex leather-dominant taste, wonderful smooth and lubricating mouthfeel, mouth-watering, bit of spicy tingle and camphor. Qi hits quickly with droopy orange gaze, warmth and relaxation before the chest punch of what feels like Bulang energy kicks in. And oh my is the color of the brew beautiful, like mahogany tinted with that orange-pink color often called coral.
This is an awesome shou, one of the best I’ve had. Thanks, Togo.
Flavors: Baked Bread, Bark, Camphor, Cocoa, Earth, Herbs, Leather, Medicinal, Molasses, Soy sauce, Spicy, Vanilla, Wet Rocks, Wood
Sipping on this sample from Togo as a digestive. Tonight’s menu was mapo tofu. It was my first time using shelf-stable silken tofu and it was actually great!
This is a pretty light and very clean shou flavor-wise despite brewing up very dark. I’m not getting much beyond alkaline earth, clean wet basement cement, a bit of malt-stale bread and minerals. There is a hint of a fruit I can’t place that seems almost like prickly pear. Tingly mouthfeel after the swallow. Like Togo, I did not experience cha qi. More of a caffeinating than a relaxing shou.
The oily body is the saving grace of this tea. It makes the ensuing dryness and sour aftertaste almost worth it. It’s an ok tea but not something I’d purchase. I like more depth to my shou.
Flavors: Baked Bread, Drying, Earth, Malt, Mineral, Smooth, Tart, Wet Rocks
Received this sample with my YS order almost a year ago. There’s no harvest date listed but most likely it’s from 2018 so this tea is already at least 2 years old. Black teas however seem less prone to going stale the way greens and oolongs do. In my experience, they tend to lose a little of that oomph but still remain quite drinkable.
This one has a rather generic Yunnan black profile. It’s smooth with a light malty flavor and a little sweet potato though not terribly earthy. The aroma is an interesting mix of malt, tobacco, grapes, and raisins – giving a hint as to what this might have tasted like at its peak. A good tea for blending but alright otherwise.
Flavors: Grapes, Malt, Raisins, Sweet Potatoes, Tobacco
No notes yet. Add one?
Flavors: Butternut Squash, Floral, Smooth
It is actually 14 years old. From Derk. Thank you, it was lovely!
I wasn’t sure how much leaf I should use. I took all from derk, 6 grams per my gaiwan of 85 ml. Maybe too strong, huh.
But it wasn’t! It brought wonderful tastes as: ash (it was somehow nice), indeed bit alkaline as derk suggests, but as well fruity ones: stonefruits and mostly red fruits – I would say raspberry, but mostly just their seeds.
I am impressed, as I have expected some really odd flavour profile, but instead it is certainly nice one. It is roasted, bit smoky, but all mellowed with sweet fruit notes I wrote earlier about.
I wasn’t precise with brewing, just I have done a quick rinse, let the humidity enter the leaves (I had to put clothes on drying racks), then steeps which started like 10 seconds long, but they become longer and longer, by 10 seconds each I guess. And while drinking fourth – I just let the next ones steeped for some, unspecific, time frame. It was 60-120 seconds, just when I thought it is enough, I finished that steep.
All were great, but I think that around third one was greatest, those mineral, ash, roasty notes were faint, berry notes were strong as well the stonefruits.
I don’t know how to rate it. Nice one, interesting one, tasty one. Some off notes for me there, mostly first sips were really ashy (even though in lovely way), so not 100 from me, but I guess 89 will be for this tea good rating.
Flavors: Ash, Mineral, Raspberry, Roasted, Stonefruits
This is a very basic pu-erh: wood, decay, a bit sour, a bit sweet. No complexity and the flavors do not blend well. I can’t find anything outright bad, but also nothing good or just memorable. Also, I failed to see any signs that it will get better with time. Well, at least it lacks any fishiness.
There are many inexpensive shous that are more interesting and enjoyable. I still have an almost entire cake of it left and it will probably be a slog to finish.
Flavors: Decayed wood, Sour, Sweet, Wood
I’m mostly a sheng drinker but occasionally get a craving for white tea. I’ve bought a small bag of this each year since 2017 and still have some left in each bag. I reach for this tea when I want a bright May afternoon in a cup. As others have noted there are notes of dill and honeydew. I also get a whiff of cardamom. I typically gongfu this but see that others cold brew it. Will have to try that.
It is part of the five pounds of pu-erh that I ordered to get me through the virus-forced extended working-from-home period.
The reviews by HaChaChaCha and Rich are on point:
- a clean, powerful taste without any funk or bitterness
- thick and viscous, with a strong cha qi
- main flavors are wood and chocolate, with some undertones of barnyard and berries
- not responsive to differences in the brewing time
- not a lot of complexity.
Now, it is well-packed, but not excessively: it could be broken with a knife fairly easy and without dust. This is a no-fuss shou with punch and character that could be enjoyed on a budget. Good stuff.
Flavors: Bark, Barnyard, Berries, Chocolate, Wood
Haven’t drank much tea lately on account of getting bumped to a different position at work due to a torn medial meniscus. Tried dismounting my horse onto a fence after an after-work ride to save my legs from the jarring shock of slamming onto firm ground after a 5 foot drop, annnd I managed to screw up my ability to walk for the next 8+ weeks in the process. Can’t do my usual daily routine of drinking cold brews in a Komatsu HM400 when I’m unable to climb the ladder up to the cab! A stuffy office job just makes you crave highly caffeinated hot coffee instead.
On their own, these taste like stale potpourri. Very pretty to look at—not so great to drink. Added some lemon gunpowder to that in an attempt to make it palatable and it worked rather well. These are great for mixing into other teas and tisanes, but I wouldn’t recommend drinking them straight! (Or eating them, for that matter. Resist the urge to bite directly into a dry one. They taste like bitter powdery misery.)
Flavors: Floral, Rose
This was another of my February sipdowns. This also seems to be a tea that only I flip out over from year to year. The Snowflower Bi Luo Chun was among my favorite Yunnan Sourcing white teas from the spring of 2017, so I just had to pick up some of the 2018 harvest before putting an indefinite moratorium on Yunnan Sourcing purchases. As it turned out, I enjoyed this offering about as much as the previous one.
I prepared this tea gongfu style. After rinsing, I steeped 6 grams of loose tea buds in 4 ounces of 176 F water for 5 seconds. This infusion was followed by 16 additional infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 7 seconds, 9 seconds, 12 seconds, 16 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, and 7 minutes.
Prior to the rinse, the dry tea buds presented aromas of hay, malt, molasses, corn husk, and grass. After the rinse, new aromas of lemon zest, basil, straw, and toasted sweet corn emerged. The first infusion introduced a cucumber scent. In the mouth, the tea liquor offered up notes of hay, malt, straw, corn husk, cucumber, and lemon zest that were balanced by hints of sugarcane, molasses, grass, and toasted sweet corn. The subsequent infusions coaxed out aromas of lime zest, sugarcane, coriander, honeydew, and sour plum. Stronger and more immediately evident notes of sugarcane, grass, and toasted sweet corn appeared in the mouth alongside notes of cream, oats, butter, lime zest, minerals, basil, coriander, sour plum, lettuce, pear, and honeydew. I also picked up on some hints of sour apricot here and there. As the tea faded, the liquor emphasized notes of minerals, grass, straw, corn husk, lettuce, and butter that were chased by hints of toasted sweet corn, sugarcane, lemon zest, basil, plum, pear, hay, and cucumber.
This struck me as being a very satisfying Yunnan white tea. It was not the sweetest or most approachable white tea in the world, but it displayed a unique and sometimes challenging blend of aromas and flavors that I greatly enjoyed. Hopefully, I can try a more recent harvest once I clean out more of the tea hoard.
Flavors: Apricot, Butter, Coriander, Corn Husk, Cream, Cucumber, Grass, Hay, Herbaceous, Honeydew, Lemon Zest, Lettuce, Lime, Malt, Mineral, Molasses, Oats, Pear, Plums, Straw, Sugarcane
This was one of my sipdowns from the second half of last month. It was also a tea that continued a troubling trend of Yunnan Sourcing Mi Lan Xiang not being consistently enjoyable for me. Much like the Classic Mi Lan Xiang from the spring of 2017 that I reviewed last year, this offering was more or less enjoyable but displayed some qualities that did not strike me as being all that appealing. It was not a bad tea, but it did have its flaws.
I prepared this tea gongfu style. After rinsing, I steeped 6 grams of loose tea leaves in 4 ounces of 203 F water for 6 seconds. This infusion was followed by 16 additional infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 9 seconds, 12 seconds, 16 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, 7 minutes, and 10 minutes.
Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves produced aromas of honey, orchid, peach, nectarine, cream, and lychee. After the rinse, new aromas of grass, sugarcane, roasted almond, and orange blossom appeared. The first infusion brought out subtle aromas of spinach, banana, and vanilla. In the mouth, the tea liquor offered up notes of honey, grass, orchid, roasted almond, butter, and cream that were balanced by hints of lychee, vanilla, peach, orange blossom, and sugarcane. The subsequent infusions introduced aromas of coriander, basil, butter, pear, pineapple, lemon zest, and violet. Stronger and more immediately notable impressions of orange blossom, lychee, vanilla, sugarcane, and peach appeared in the mouth alongside notes of minerals, coriander, spinach, tangerine, lemon zest, pineapple, pear, violet, plum, and nectarine. I also detected hints of basil (which grew stronger on each swallow) and green banana. As the tea faded, the liquor emphasized notes of minerals, grass, sugarcane, pear, lemon zest, and tangerine that were chased by late emerging caramel accents and hints of spinach, coriander, peach, lychee, roasted almond, violet, orchid, and orange blossom.
This was an interesting oolong with some lovely flower and tropical fruit aromas and flavors, but it did not often pull all of its qualities together in such a way that I was provided with a balanced and consistent drinking experience. In particular, the way those basil notes swelled in the mouth after each swallow could be a bit much. Overall, this was not a bad tea. It displayed more good qualities than bad qualities. It just needed more integration and balance in its flavor profile.
Flavors: Almond, banana, Butter, Caramel, Citrus, Coriander, Cream, Grass, Herbaceous, Honey, Lemon Zest, Lychee, Mineral, Orange Blossom, Orchid, Peach, Pear, Pineapple, Plums, Spinach, Stonefruits, Sugarcane, Vanilla, Violet
This was my first sipdown of the month. I somehow ended up with a ton of this tea back in 2017 and put a 100 gram pouch in storage to test its aging capabilities. I finally broke that pouch out during the last week of February and spent most of that week plus the first few days of the current month finishing it. I found it to be a very nice Yunnan black tea and one that was indeed suitable for aging.
I prepared this tea gongfu style. After a quick rinse, I steeped 6 grams of loose tea leaves in 4 ounces of 195 F water for 5 seconds. This infusion was followed by 16 additional infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 7 seconds, 9 seconds, 12 seconds, 16 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, and 7 minutes.
Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves produced aromas of chocolate, pine, malt, cedar, cinnamon, and marshmallow. After the rinse, I noted new aromas of baked bread, raisin, burnt sugar, honey, and roasted almond. The first infusion introduced aromas of orange zest and black cherry that were underscored by hints of smoke and geranium. In the mouth, the tea liquor presented notes of chocolate, burnt sugar, cinnamon, malt, and baked bread that were balanced by hints of roasted almond, cedar, pine, and orange zest. The subsequent infusions introduced aromas of roasted peanut, vanilla, leather, prune, camphor, and black pepper. Stronger and more immediately evident notes of roasted almond, cedar, pine, and orange zest appeared in the mouth alongside notes of minerals, roasted peanut, raisin, leather, marshmallow, vanilla, earth, cream, prune, and cooked green beans. Hints of grass, smoke, caramelized banana, black pepper, geranium, camphor, and black cherry could be detected as well. As the tea faded, the liquor emphasized notes of minerals, earth, burnt sugar, roasted peanut, malt, cinnamon, and orange zest that were chased by hints of leather, roasted almond, black pepper, chocolate, baked bread, camphor, and pine.
This was a rock solid and very likable Yunnan black tea at a great price. It also seemed to have deteriorated very little in nearly three years of storage. Though one could easily find more unique and challenging Yunnan black teas on the market, this one proved to still be well worth a try. I could definitely see a tea like this making a great daily drinker and a fantastic introduction to the wonderful world of Yunnan black tea.
Flavors: Almond, Baked Bread, banana, Black Pepper, Camphor, Cedar, Cherry, Chocolate, Cinnamon, Dried Fruit, Earth, Geranium, Grass, Green Beans, Honey, Leather, Malt, Marshmallow, Mineral, Orange Zest, Peanut, Pine, Raisins, Smoke, Sugar, Vanilla
This is about to become the newest victim in my 2020 sipdown campaign. I have not quite finished the last of this tea, as I still have 3 or 4 grams left, but I will very likely finish it up later this evening. The last Jing Gu White Pekoe Silver Needle I tried from Yunnan Sourcing greatly impressed me, and this tea has also been a favorite among the spring 2018 white teas thus far. I found this particular production to be a little smoky and somewhat spicier than the 2017 offering, which struck me as being smoother. Overall, this one is about as good.
I prepared this tea gongfu style. After rinsing, I steeped 6 grams of loose tea buds in 4 ounces of 180 F water for 10 seconds. This infusion was chased by 17 additional infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 12 seconds, 16 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, 7 minutes, 10 minutes, 15 minutes, and 20 minutes.
Prior to the rinse, the dry tea buds produced aomas of hay, grass, eucalyptus, and sugarcane that were underscored by a subtle smoky scent. After the rinse, I detected new aromas of straw, wood, peanut, lemon, and basil. The first infusion introduced aromas of tree bark, white pepper, and minerals. In the mouth, the tea liquor presented soft notes of hay, grass, straw, cream, wood, eucalyptus, lemon, and sugarcane that were balanced by subtler impressions of oat, butter, cinnamon, and white pepper. The subsequent infusions introduced aromas of oats, butter, cinnamon, cream, lychee, plum, vanilla, thyme, and wheat toast. Mineral, basil, and tree bark notes appeared in the mouth alongside subtle peanut and smoke impressions and more immediately apparent flavors of oats, butter, cinnamon, and white pepper. I also detected notes of vanilla, lychee, plum, wheat toast, malt, apricot, rosemary, cantaloupe, honeydew, and thyme as well as hints of white peach, camphor, watermelon rind, and wintergreen oil. As the tea faded, the liquor settled and emphasized notes of minerals, oats, cream, butter, wheat toast, hay, lemon, basil, watermelon rind, and sugarcane that were underscored by delicate hints of eucalyptus, white pepper, thyme, wood, cinnamon, lychee, cantaloupe, and honeydew.
It seems that the Jing Gu teas almost always end up being some of my favorite Yunnan offerings from year to year, and this one was yet another Jing Gu tea I quickly came to hold in high regard. I adored the gorgeously layered and integrated aromas and flavors this tea offered. I also continue to appreciate the fact that the Jing Gu Silver Needles always seem to be less reserved than the more highly regarded Fujianese Silver Needles. Speaking of Silver Needle white teas from Fujian Province, I really need to get around to trying some more in the coming year. I haven’t had any in forever.
Flavors: Apricot, Bark, Butter, Camphor, Cantaloupe, Cinnamon, Cream, Eucalyptus, Grass, Hay, Herbaceous, Honeydew, Lemon, Lychee, Malt, Melon, Mineral, Oats, Peach, Peanut, Pepper, Plums, Smoke, Straw, Sugarcane, Thyme, Toast, Vanilla, Wheat, Wood
The honey is front and center here! You can get a whiff of it at any stage of the tea making process, and the liquor is full of a golden sweetness. This is what I’m always looking for when I (foolishly) try another Taiwanese honey black. Just wish there was more flavor. It’s a bit bland aside from the honey and usual fresh wheat bread aroma that seems to be typical of Yunnan spring picks. Still a solid tea for the price, though, it’ll come in handy for mindless drinking next fall.
Flavors: Baked Bread, Honey, Wheat
Feeling a bit too lazy to make a seperate listing for a batch that’s a year apart, so this is a review for the Spring 2019 harvest.
I’ve been dancing around hot gold Yunnan blacks for the past couple weeks. It’s definitely spring now, the days are 50F or a little above with the sun intercepted by some heavy rain. Cold brew teas with fresher notes seem more appealing than homey hot brews. Out with the sweet potato and yeast, in with the crisp fruits and florals.
However, I ordered this and a few packets of other Yunnan golds to try back at the start of February and they just arrived, and I’m not letting that seasonal weariness keep me away from new tea. The leaves are very pleasing to touch: velvety from the little hairs, they feel like the ears of baby goats. Admittedly sat there and stroked them for a few moments before actually brewing them. I made two 5 ounce steeps in a gaiwan and poured those into a mug instead of basket-infusing for once.
This is pretty mild as far as heavy golden blacks go. Starting to realize that they aren’t my favorite because they become hard to drink when the flavor is too intense, but this one is quite light! And terribly smooth. It tastes a bit like wheat bread, in a pleasant way. The last sip in the cup was almost syrupy sweet. A very nice tea to accompany a meal on a chilly day. Probably going to save the rest of the bag for the next cold snap, because I don’t think it’s meant for the warm seasons.
Flavors: Caramel, Sugarcane, Toast, Wheat
Made this as a cold brew overnight. When my Yunnan Sourcing box arrived yesterday, I glossed over most of the teas and spent a good 5 minutes huffing the aroma coming from this bag like some kind of lunatic. So sweet and gently floral with hints of watermelon. I can’t get enough of that scent.
The tea itself is delightfully delicate. Very pale liquor with a light honey hue, incredibly fragrant when you open the lid to the cup. It’s not unlike sniffing a bouquet. The taste doesn’t disappoint: you get honeydew melon, white florals, and a pleasant sourness with hints of dillweed right off the bat. I know that combo probably sounds horrible, but it really works! And that’s coming from someone avoids weird, savory tea notes like the plague.
I could see myself buying a big bag of the Spring 2020 harvest when that comes out, but honestly, it’s so good that I’d rather savor it by drinking it sparingly. Gotta preserve the magic of a wonderful tea.
Flavors: Dill, Floral, Gardenias, Honeydew, Melon, Pleasantly Sour, Sweet
Sweet, creamy, vanilla, cherry cola, some mild herbaciousness, some cocoa. Later steeps have a sweet, somewhat floral quality. Brewed this up grandpa style and was hit with a flavor like classic glazed donut. It’s not the most complex shou, but it’s very satisfying. If this tea sat and brooded a little more, getting a little more heady I wouldn’t mind.
Flavors: Cherry, Cocoa, Creamy, Sweet, Vanilla
I’m developing a real fondness for Jinggu area teas. While I’m primarily an Yiwu fanatic the prices of the good old arbor stuff (especially the heady border area teas) has gotten astronomical. The terrace and young tree teas offer a somewhat diluted version of teas from the area but it’s not the same. I’m learning that I can get very high quality old arbor Jinggu teas for a similar price as little tree GFZ and get much more enjoyment from it. This tea is a case in point. Thick, oily, notes of citrus peel, basil and surprisingly pleasant popsicle stick notes evolve through a dozen or so steeps. There’s a nice cooling effect that I expect with a good northern tea and mouthwatering effect that continues long after the tea is gone. The qi is really substantial especially for a tea in this price range. It concentrates mainly in the head and shoulders with a little chest tightening. It’s a calm and happy energy that relaxes the mind and makes the body want to move. Perhaps I’ll grandpa a bit of this at my next show.
This was a gift from a coworker, and it’s pretty dang old so I made it Grandpa style in the hope that the longer and more prolonger steep might help draw out some more flavour and life from the leaves – since they smelled pretty flat/stale. It kind of worked, the flavour did get stronger and there were more detectable notes of butter, pea flowers, and florals with a greener vegetal undertone. However, it was still a bit flat/lacking life even if the overall flavours were there…
This is a really beautiful cup of tea. The smell from the pouch made me feel like I had made a horrible mistake in buying a sample, because it has the approximate aroma of a burnt forest floor and charred bone right off the bat. Decided to give it a try this afternoon, though, so I can stop fearfully side-eyeing the pouch whenever I open up my tea chest.
The whole leaves are easily pried apart from the compressed brick with the tips of your fingers, no pu’erh pick necessary to avoid breaking them into dusty pieces. They smell like burned oak leaves; or the first whiff of a freshly opened scotch with tarred rope, heavy smoke, and peat notes. The liquor is a much lighter hue than you’d expect. Dusty rose brown. A very smoky aroma, but not an off-putting one. The taste is spectacular to me. Not savory, but ever so gently sweet, with a clean pleasant smokiness. A touch of minerals, a hint of aged wood, and the oakiness of something aged in a barrel. Feels like something that would be served to you by a chivalrous sasquatch in a pacific northwestern pine forest. He could easily win you over with it and weasel his way into a second date.
Flavors: Molasses, Oak wood, Peat, Smoke
These are alright after you get past the first couple flash steeps. Made the mistake of drinking those instead of dumping them and they were riddled with strong ammonia and barn floor flavors. After you get past that stage; it’s a palatable ripe pu’erh with a strong, nearly overpowering rice flavor. I did a single tuocha in a 150 ml gaiwan and that was probably a mistake, since even the short amount of time it took to slap the lid on the gaiwan and pour out the liquid created a frighteningly strong, opaque brew. Can’t say I’ll be revisiting my pouch of these any time soon. Maybe in a couple of years when they lose some of the ammonia and wet pile notes. It’s a unique pu’erh, that’s for sure.
Flavors: Barnyard, Fishy, Mushrooms, Rice, Wet Earth