Tea type
Pu-erh Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
Bitter, Heavy, Spicy, Camphor, Citrus, Honey, Vanilla, Wood, Alcohol, Eucalyptus, Menthol, Oak wood, Pepper, Smoke, Butter, Sweet
Sold in
Not available
Caffeine
Medium
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by DarkStar
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 oz / 86 ml

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11 Tasting Notes View all

From The Essence of Tea

This tea was a bit of an experiment for us. We’d found 2 different maochas from Bulang mountain, which were each excellent, but in different ways. One was old trees from around Manmu village, while the other was old trees from a few km away. We went back and forth, trying to choose one of them to press into cakes, and in the end decided to blend the two teas. The Manmu was very pure in flavour with a strong qi and strong ku (pleasant bitterness), the other was thicker in the mouth and more sweet in the aftertaste, but also with a strong qi.

My feeling is that the result has turned out well. The strong ku of the Manmu has been tamed a little and become more thick, while the other has benefited from some extra bitterness and qi. Thick and exceptionally smooth, the bitterness that Bulang is famed for is nicely balanced with a quick, sweet aftertaste and long evolving flavours and sensations in the mouth.

We’ll need to see how this ages, but my feeling is that this is the best Bulang tea we’ve made so far.

About The Essence of Tea View company

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11 Tasting Notes

69 tasting notes

So I’ve been on a yin trip lately and have accordingly been drinking mainly Yiwu (and a bit of aged Lincang). I figured it was time for a little Yang and broke out a sample of this. Yang indeed. I was immediately transported to 1990 when I was 16 and puffing on a Camel light at the skating rink. The security guard handed me a Pall Mall non filter and said try this son. This is a MAN’S cigarette. Indeed it was, just like this tea, brimming with toxic masculinity. Actually this tea doesn’t so much remind me of a cigarette but of a Parodi cigar. When most people talk of cigar notes in a tea they mean nice smooth cedary notes you’d expect from a fine Dominican wet cured stick. Not this tea. It tastes for the world like a Parodi, the Italian dry cured cigars you see in gangster movies. Bitter, spicy, strong and manly. The soup is thick and bitter but not as much bitterness or returning sweetness as a Lao Mane but close. It also has the slate and fennel notes I get from Lao mane teas but less pronounced. It’s also thick enough to satisfy an espresso drinker. The qi is also powerful but not of the calming euphoric meditative type I get from an Yiwu or the bombastic stoner qi I get from an LBZ. This stuff makes me spacey, lethargic and dumb. Like I lost a few iq points. I find myself looking for my phone while talking on it and reminiscing about Pall Mall cigarettes. I get a similar effect from adolescent red mark teas so I wonder if they got their material from the same part of Menghai. If you like a tea that is simple, potent and zonkering try this stuff…did I mention it was potent?

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100
126 tasting notes

Strong, bitter and heavy with a good Qi. This is what Bulang tastes like!
Images and more at https://puerh.blog/teanotes/2012-bulang-eot

Flavors: Bitter, Heavy, Spicy

Preparation
10 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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25 tasting notes

You know, I have had a really interesting journey with this tea. I bought the Malaysian storage cake for my birthday in November last year and it was admittedly, from the get go, set up for being a disappointment. Their 2008 Bulang sold out the day I was going to buy it and was a tea I had saved up for and been wanting for a while and it selling out so close to when I was going to buy it made it seem like a cruel joke. I then decided to get the Kai Yuan Blue Stamp and it wouldn’t go in my cart so I kind of just jumped for this last minute. Of course the Kai Yuan was still available, and I had not noticed until the order of this shipped. Initially I got this and it did not have too much flavor nor smell, the strong qi written about on the website was not apparent and the bitterness was rough in a seemingly absurdly exaggerated way.I love bitter food and drink.

So I don’t know what happened, but its made a full 180. I now like it so much that it is reserved for drinking only on special occasions. And I do not give that designation for any ol’ tea.

The tea is like a crazy dense cake with a $%#& ton of dried fruit in it. It is HUGE in a lot of ways. Its energy is instant, you feel it travel down, sitting in your throat and warming your belly. By steeps 3 or 4 there is a whole heating of the body and goosebumps happen as the cold is pushed out of your body. By steeps 7 or 8 I am a sloppy drunk. Sober me in the recesses of my mind is thinking, “stop dancing” but the tea doesn’t allow me to stop. Its intense, a full body effect, and I keep sipping and sipping, each time a new flavor or texture or after taste is revealed to me. Bitterness courses throughout, a living breathing pulsing center to this tea, there from the beginning of the sip to the aftertaste. It is no longer overwhelming, but a definite spiky texture which slightly distinguishes it from many bitter sensations I have had.

This is a tea for when you have 3 or 4 hours or more of nothing to do. I highly recommend never drinking when you have something to do. I very much enjoy it and feel a constant pull towards its beautiful essence.

*Brewing tip: lower temperature but same amount of leaf is the key to this tea. Less leaf does not fix the bitterness, flash steeps do.

Rasseru

Another company I love the art style, so beautiful

zacherywolf7

Quite the wrapper to own. Its extremely thick, and probably handmade, paper too!

Rasseru

Even better :)

andresito

I bought a cake too :)

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56 tasting notes

First session was mostly broken leaves from the sample bag, and super bitter. But it had redeeming qualities so I made a note to revisit.

Second session a week later, I brewed 4 steeps and mixed them together. A final, and admittedly lazy, attempt to see if this tea had anything worth while. And yes it does!

Super thick body, mouth coating, well balanced, complex flavors of vanilla, wood, earth, leather. The bitter is there, but its like the bitterness of a grapefruit or orange peel (minus the citrus).

Filling chaqi, gives my body a full and strong feeling. Super cooling huigans. This is a good tea.

Not for the beginner puerh drinker.

I’m really glad I didn’t skim over this tea with all the samples I’m working through. Adding a cake to my next order.

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84
317 tasting notes

Brews a medium yellow-orange. Very earthy and woody definitely aged “beyond it’s years”. Thick and buttery with notes of pretzel, citrus, sandalwood, camphor, and vanilla. Slightly medicinal. Moderate honey sweetness and a fairly strong bitterness.

Part of me wants to like this tea a lot, but I get a sort of off putting note that reminds me of over-ripe oranges on a hot day. I suppose that’s a strange thing to taste, but I grew in Florida with an abandoned orange grove in the back yard. It had it’s perks; free oranges and the lovely scent of orange blossoms wafting though the air. It also had it’s downsides though; rotten fruit and rats and rattlesnakes thicker than your arm! Any way you put it the taste of this tea brings me back.

Flavors: Bitter, Camphor, Citrus, Honey, Vanilla, Wood

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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1271 tasting notes

From the Puerh TTB

To start off, I steeped this one quite aggressive as I was feeling in YOLO sheng mode. That was a bad idea with this tea – the flavor is pretty harsh. It is strong, soggy ashtray of menthol cigarettes, and a prominent sour bitterness that lasts a long time after each sip. The texture is a slick feeling in the mouth, and the dryness is moderate, but whoa, the most bitter bulang I’ve had. The smoke is light, it tasted like it got drowned out at some point.

But yeah, a new sheng drinker should likely stay clear of this one, or steep it low, around 185F. If you are a sheng drinker who loves bitterness (more bitter than W2T New Amerykah) have at it. The loooong aftertaste is quite pro, if you like bitter.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 1 g 0 OZ / 14 ML
Cwyn

The smoke is such a shame.

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88
316 tasting notes

I recently exhorted people to write reviews of the TTB teas, so realized I need to set a better example. Hence, this review. In fairness, I’ve been inundated with other teas: two group buys from Liquid Proust, and one from Emmett, and two groups of samples I wanted to get through before Black Friday. However, it is now after Black Friday, and I’m out of excuses.

This is a tea I set aside before I sent out the box. I’d never had Essence of Tea puerh before so I was looking forward to trying some of their teas. The first steep caught me unawares, as it’s been a long time since I’ve had any Bulang, and this was a really powerful example. I was initially a bit put off by the earthy, slightly meaty nose, but the taste was great: very complex with earthy/leather flavors and a long, slightly sweet finish. As the cup cooled, the aroma changed from earthy to spicy. The second steep (10 s) was similar to the first steep. Very complex. I’m really starting to notice the cha qi. I was feeling light-headed when I prepared the second steep, and now I’m feeling it throughout my body: Very relaxed and detached. The mouth-feel is thick; almost chewy. The finish is so powerful that there is no obvious change in taste when I swallow (or even a minute later). The 3rd steep (20 s) has a rich meaty nose. The taste is wet wood with slight bitterness on the tongue. 4th (30 s): Wet wood with increasing bitterness but still interesting and enjoyable. I’m still working on the 6th steep but the trend seems to be for the flavors to become more woody and somewhat bitter. I would say that the tea peaked during the second steep. It is still good now but less exciting. I realize that I need to clarify that the bitterness was not excessive and I suspect many reviewers would have referred to this as “good bitterness”. To me that’s just a contradiction in terms.

I was surprised to see that this tea was only 3 years old. I would have guessed closer to 10. I guess that’s the effect of Malaysian storage. I’m not a fan of bitter teas, and marked this down a bit because of the bitterness. However, I really loved the complexity and the subtle change of flavor from cup to cup and even within the same cup as the tea cooled. Someone who likes “good bitterness” might really love this tea.

Thanks again to David and Yingxi at Essence of Tea for contributing this tea to the travelling tea box.

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 2 g 2 OZ / 59 ML

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86
506 tasting notes

This tea was something powerful. I opened the package and was struck by a very prominent camphor scent. This aroma was fresh and intense. I broke off a chunk and placed it into my warmed gaiwan. The aroma deepens to an all encompassing camphor with eucalyptus. I could feel this scent begin to cleanse my body. I washed the leaves once and prepared for brewing. The wet leaves reminded my of the leaves of a eucalyptus tree. This session is largely composed of cooling sensations with an underlying of wood tones. The flavor was incredibly peculiar. The brew begins as cask wood and alcohol. The term “bourbon barrel” comes to mind. The drink carries a prominent menthol and camphor flavor that fills the mouth and follows through to the stomach. The drink emits a cooling sensation that encompasses the body. The qi is quite powerful and centering. The feeling begins in the temples and encroaches upon the body as a whole. This is a very “now moment” tea. The tea sips begin with a peppery kuwei and a dripping pleasant huigan. The mouth feel is nice and lubricating with a smooth filling. The aftertaste leaves a whisp of smoke. I love the mouth action this brew brings to the table, and there is plenty of hair prickling. However, there is a heavy bitterness present in the brew, as is with all other bulang. The leaves are large and unbroken with buds and some large stems. This cake runs in line with the classic Bulang material characteristics. The sips contain nice tantalizing kuwei, a sharp swift bite, light cask wood, and finish with a lasting slight huigan. The unique part is the storage, which added the menthol and camphor like tones. This tea is a prime example of how strongly storage can affect your puerh. I would compare this to the non-Malaysian stored version of this Bulang this company offers.

https://instagram.com/p/8gVFR9TGcn/?taken-by=haveteawilltravel

Flavors: Alcohol, Camphor, Eucalyptus, Menthol, Oak wood, Pepper, Smoke

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
mrmopar

Drank this as well today!

jschergen

This sounds really good.

mrmopar

Very nice one. Going to have another!

Haveteawilltravel

I’m not keen to the menthol tones. It was a very well done tea, but it’s not for me. It’s definitely something to experience though!

mrmopar

I like the brash teas sometimes ;P

The Satanist

Have you ever had the 2008 Bulang from crimson lotus?

zacherywolf7

Bought a cake of the malaysian stored one on a whim. It was marshy and peaty, your bourbon barrel is my islay single malt :P. Really strong bitter taste. Might drop the temperature to 200. Definitely a Bulang that stands out.

Haveteawilltravel

hahah that’s awesome :) I feel the storage differences really made this Bulang become something special.

Haveteawilltravel

I have had that ripe. I believe my review is up on here. I remember it being pretty good.

boychik

I think The Satanist meant Bulang Tribute from CLT, no?

Haveteawilltravel

I thought that too… I have some of that as well, but I’ve yet to try it. How is it?

boychik

I love it. I have a cake. It’s very drinkable despite being young . I think because it’s a blend

Haveteawilltravel

hmmm I’ll have to try it. I’ve been eyeing it lately too…

The Satanist

The 2008 imperial grade Bulang shou ripe puerh

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14 tasting notes

Second TTB review. I admittedly started this session not expecting much as most Bulangs I’ve tried have been harshly bitter and overall disappointing. Glad to say this tea was anything but that. This was rich, thick and oily. Bitterness was fairly strong but not at all harsh, in fact it was of the most enjoyable parts of the session. The kind of bitterness you would get from both high quality espresso and semi sweet chocolate. Those flavors were the most dominate in the flavor as well along with caramel, brown sugar. Some dark dried fruits and mushrooms were also present but in the background and didn’t make their way to the forefront till the end of the session. Coated the mouth and throat well which led to a strong and long lasting aftertaste. Big floral bloom in the mouth upon breathing out which was a bit surprising since it didn’t show up in the taste. Maybe it was there when younger but has been aged out by the excellent Malaysian storage. Qi came on fairly quickly, by the second cup or so and lasted throughout the session. Not overly strong but persistent and of good quality, best way I can describe it is I felt pretty damn awesome lol.

Glad to have finally had a great session with a Bulang tea and any MengHai county tea in general. Finding good high quality west banna sheng (without paying through the nose) seems to be very difficult as compared to tea from Mengla county.

Preparation
5 g 3 OZ / 75 ML
JC

Give the Tea Urchin’s 2013 Bulang Beauty a try. ;)

Haveteawilltravel

I’ve been wanting some of the Bulang beauty… Group buy…?

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90
26 tasting notes

A little surprised that this was not on Steepster, so thought I would have a tasting session with this. I still have roughly half a cake left from the cake that I bought last year. I was pretty impressed with it last year, but was curious to see how it would develop over a year. Here are my notes…

How many leaves you choose to brew really depends on how much bitterness you want. I personally love the bitterness found in Bulang puerh so I used 9 grams in my 130ml yixing. Dry leaves smell pleasantly sweet. Boil the kettle and let the water cool down for 2-3 minutes. A quick 3 second rinse and I smell the wet leaves…“biscuit” Bulang aroma that smells potently rich.

My first proper steep at 7 seconds. Nice golden texture. Sipping the brew I am slightly taken aback by how mellow this tastes. Smooth, buttery mouthfeel, honey sweet notes, no bitterness in the background. “Very elegant” I think to myself.

Second steep slightly longer at 10 seconds. Texture is now darker golden. I take a sip and there it is…liquid has become pretty thick now, lovely, complex bitterness with sweetness in the aftertaste, mild astringency. Already starting to feel some good energy from this.

Third steep at 15 seconds. Colour is even darker, and mouthfeel at its thickest. I decide to sip this once it has cooled down a bit. Rich, robust, heavy, bitterness still pushing through like a champ, good sweetness, still the mild astringency which is really rounding off everything nicely on the tongue and at the back of the throat. The initial energy I felt has now been replaced by a relaxed mind and body, making me feel just about ready for bed. This is a seriously solid Bulang.

Later steeps and the “biscuit” Bulang aroma from the wet leaves is nearly gone…I can now sense a more “flowery” aroma. The bitterness is starting to fade in the taste, and I think this is a good point to end my session. I lasted 10 steeps over 3 hours.

So, overall I think this is an excellent Bulang. In my opinion it is probably more elegant in its taste compared to the New Amerykah powerhouse. Which puerh I drink entirely depends on my mood. I prefer the brute strength of the New Amerykah overall, however this Bulang is the perfect end to a lovely meal. New Amerykah I have first thing in the morning when I need to wake up, this Bulang is great for quieter, more relaxed sessions. Variety is the spice of life. From a price point I feel this is not “inexpensive”. The price is now £103 ($165) which is essentially double the price of the New Amerykah when it was available…these days I would choose something with a bit more age for the same price, but that comes down to tastes evolving. One cannot deny that this Bulang is of an excellent quality, and deserves at least a sample to try. Many thanks to EOT for a really decent Bulang!

Flavors: Bitter, Butter, Sweet

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 9 g 4 OZ / 130 ML

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