I’ve had 2014 Cloudy Days from Crimson Lotus in storage for a few years and decided to try it for the first time this morning. Since I did not taste it when it was first produced, I read the other tasting notes, and it sounds like it has not changed much over the years except to continue to mellow out as one would expect. There are zero negative qualities to this tea, now. It is ready to drink. I brewed this gongfu style in a clay teapot with quick seconds-long steeps progressively extending the steep time. Cloudy Days is a really smooth and balanced shou pu’er. It is initially quite sweet. There is a warm hay like quality with the typical earthiness and nutty flavors. There is a small amount of bitterness in the aftertaste. I initially wrote no throat feels, but I am now getting a little deep in the throat. There is a little mild chalkiness on the back of the lips after the finish. I think a lot of people would enjoy this. It would be an excellent introduction to shou pu’er. The 2014 Cloudy Days is sold out, but Crimson Lotus has reproduced this tea in a 2016 version that is still available.
Addendum: Don’t be afraid to push this tea hard in later steepings. I got distracted and left the leaves steeping for several minutes, and remarkably the tea was perfect with no initial bitterness. Wow.
Flavors: Earth, Hay, Nutty, Sweet