Wow….Just wow this tea is absolutely amazing. I don’t think I have yet drank a tea that I didn’t like and this one definitely wasn’t an exception.
I woke up today at 5:00 and I popped open this bag and left it for an hour or two to air out. Not that it had that much of a fermentation smell or “barn house smell” like the other puers I tried. Instead when I smelled this right after opening it had only a subtle barn house smell, but more of a very pleasant tea smell with some hay.
Now, let me just say I absolutely lost track of time after tasting the 3rd infusion it was just so good. I did two washes on this one just to get started with a nice strong brew, but I regret this decision now, as the 2nd infusion was absolutely drinkable, and I should have just let it brew a little longer.
Unlike my other reviews I wasn’t paying attention to infusions so I can’t give a really good review of each infusion by themselves. However, the 3rd and 4th infusions which were the pinnacle of this tea were very nice. You see, in my other tastings there was a Vanilla taste, which was in my face and put a cap on the other more subtle fruity flavors. Not to say that I don’t like the vanilla flavor, because I do quite enjoy it, but I was really wondering what else I could get from a ripe. This tea gave me everything that was hiding behind that vanilla flavor, it was absolutely amazing. Now I am so sorry, but I am horrible at finding tastes that aren’t in my face, or flavors that do not stand out. This tea was wonderfully balanced and had nothing that stood out infront of the others. If you read my other tastings I described the flavors as standing in a line in order from most apparent to least aparant. But this tea is more like a horizontal line with them all at the same level away from you right in front of you.It was very smooth, with a fruit flavor that is extremely hard to describe.This is going to sound really weird, but It is like you took strawberries, black berries, raspberries and other dark dark fruits (excluding peach I got no peach) and you mused them up in a bowl. Then you took the mush away from the bowl and only left the residue on the bowl and let it sit for a few hours. Then you took that bowl and licked it, that is the only way I see fit to describe the taste of the fruitiness so sorry. Also, there was a metallic taste too hiding behind the fruit, I think that this flavor was the only one that wasn’t in the equal line, it was more of behind the rest but still present. It was like you took a tiny piece of aluminum foil and stuck it on your tongue for a little bit. There was a hay that was present aswell like the rest of the These were the only flavors I could make out, but the rest I have no idea what they are, but i’m telling you they were so good. It was like just dark iso flavors like being in an antique wood box with other things that wasn’t overwhelming at all, whereas it was a very elegant not too overwhelming wooden box, like maybe sitting right next to it, smelling it’s aroma. Oh, I almost forgot, there was this mint flavor that would flash for a second or two in the first infusions, but then this flavor died down in the later infusions into something a little just a little herbal. Also with this tea I discovered how much I enjoy a teas progression. You see I thought that the only thing to ripe puerh was the 2nd or 3rd infusion where is was black and thick in your cup. But today, I discovered much more than this. The black thickness of the early steeps can be washed away and made brighter by drinking the more subtle infusions. I drank this tea until it was water, and well I think I drank a little too much. Looks like I’m not gonna sleep tonight, haha.
When compared to the Boyou I like this one a bit better! I never thought that I would say that! This tea lasted very very long, and was a collection of a whole bunch of flavors, not just vanilla and what is hiding behind it. This tea definitely cements Menghai’s reputation to me, and made me realize the importants that age gives a tea, as this had absolutely 0 fermentation taste, unlike it’s 2010 counterpart. How 3 years makes such a difference!
The qi was about a medium on this one, I wasn’t horribly tea drunk, but I definitely was for a few minutes after the last infusion. It wore off really quickly though, but was still there. I liked it this way, as I could finish up some homework afterwards, and not be too teadrunk that I couldn’t focus.
I must add the effect on my mood and after taste as well. This tea just lifted me up, it made me super happy, a great way to stat off my day. I became really patient and nothing at all bothered me. The aftertaste was good aswell, it was drinking the early infusions all over again, with a tiny bit of sweetness. Also, this tea did not give me a sweet taste when drinking water, suggesting it may not have that high of a mineral content, but I may be very wrong.
Overall an amazingly balanced tea on all levels, and an amazing experience. I recommend anyone who hasn’t tried Puerh to try this one, before buying, as if you haven’t drank Puerh before you wouldn’t have an idea of the flavors that Puerh can offer. There are some flavors that some people might not like, but I am sure that is a small fraction of people.
Flavors: Cherry, Cherry Wood, Hay, Smooth, Stonefruits, Strawberry