This was one of the first cakes I bought over a year ago from Paul at White2Tea and it was his honest description that won me over. I quote “Intense kuwei [bitterness] and potency that will not disappoint lovers of brute strength. We promise”. I love puerhs that have brute strength and a big kick to them. I have about half a cake left of this (you can see where this review is going) and it has been sitting for over a year so decided to try it again for old times sake :) Here are my notes…
Tonight I decide to really push this puerh to the limit, so I use 9 grams in my 130 ml yixing. The dry leaves smell potent and strong with a hint of sweetness. A very quick rinse, literally 3 seconds, and I smell the wet leaves…hhhmmm potent with that buttery biscuit Bulang aroma…I already know this is going to be a great session. Before I tell you my tasting experience firstly a very quick note on brewing this monster…in order to tame it you MUST flash brew it. Literally 5-10 seconds is all you need. Anymore than that and the bitterness will destroy you.
I do my first proper steep at 5 seconds. The colour of the first steep is already golden. I slowly sip the first steep…lovely dense, thick mouthfeel that is actually surprisingly sweet. It tastes smooth and crisp. However the bitterness is there lurking in the background…it will reveal itself fully very soon.
Second steep at another 5 seconds. Liquid is even more thick and dense…the sweetness is still there but the bitterness is starting to come to the fore wanting to dominate procedings. I attempt to tame the bitterness with my 3rd steep at another 5 seconds. The liquid is now looking dark golden and I think to myself “this is going to be potent”. Indeed it is, the dense bitter liquid coats my tongue and throat without mercy initially, however after a few seconds I am getting a rather lovely sweetness. This puerh is not just all about bitterness and strength…there is a hidden complexity to it that can only be reached with successful brewing times.
I push this puerh more and more with several more steeps and now the liquid is becoming VERY rich and dense. I am starting to get a “dry mouth” effect which further enhances the contrasts of bitter and sweet. I am feeling positively energised. This is incredible stuff.
So, is this puerh as good as it was a year ago?…most definitely. I would say that after a year of storage it is even better. I definitely noticed more returning sweetness inbetween steeps that I didn’t really notice before. It is just as powerful and potent as I remember. I personally think this is a puerh you really need to push…for me more leaves yield the best results. But I will stress again, watch your steeping times for the best results.
This puerh may lack in the “elegance” department, however it more than makes up for it with it’s incredible character, richness and boldness of attack. I have thoroughly enjoyed revisiting this again…it brings back some great memories from last year. Many thanks again to Paul for unleashing this monster onto us mere mortals.
Flavors: Bitter, Butter