2010 Gu Ming Xiang "Ban Pen Gu Shu" Raw Pu-erh

Tea type
Pu-erh Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
Bitter, Butter, Citrus Zest, Coriander Seed, Floral, Honey, Meat, Parsley, Peach, Peas, Peat, Pine, Smoke, Tart, Vegetal, Walnut, Wood, Heavy, Musty, Smoked, Sweet, Citrus, Metallic
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Loose Leaf
Caffeine
Not available
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by derk
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 oz / 100 ml

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5 Tasting Notes View all

  • “I was not feeling the best today, so I took out this sample I got from derk thinking it could be a good tea to cheer me up and relax. I think that worked to some extent, the tea kept my attention...” Read full tasting note
    87
  • “I can’t imagine how utterly sour, astringent and bitter this tea would’ve been several years ago. The dry, warm, and rinsed leaf highlighted the region – beef jerky, leather, musky animal hide and...” Read full tasting note
  • “5.4g, 100C, porcelain gaiwan 100mL. The last reviews on this were about 3 years ago so lets see what I think now that its had 8 years. Dry leaf smells really good and complex already but I can’t...” Read full tasting note
    89
  • “Another one from the backlogs. The main reason I delayed writing about it so long is that I found it rather confusing… In the first session it was sweet and slightly citric, with good kuwei,...” Read full tasting note
    70

From Yunnan Sourcing

This is the fourth cake in the 2010 series of Bu Lang teas from Gu Ming Xiang tea factory. Made entirely from Spring 2010 tea picked from 200-300 year old trees from the village of Ban Pen. Ban Pen is a neighboring village to both Lao Ban Zhang and Lao Man’e. It’s also inhabited by Bu Lang people who earn the majority of their living from tea.

Ban Pen teas are similiar in Ban Zhang teas in appearance, and also have some (but less) bitterness, a fast hui gan and very good staying power both in the mouth and the gaiwan.

Tea weight: 400 grams

This is the fourth cake in the 2010 series of Bu Lang teas from Gu Ming Xiang tea factory. Made entirely from Spring 2010 tea picked from 200-300 year old trees from the village of Ban Pen. Ban Pen is a neighboring village to both Lao Ban Zhang and Lao Man’e. It’s also inhabited by Bu Lang people who earn the majority of their living from tea.

Ban Pen teas are similiar in Ban Zhang teas in appearance, and also have some (but less) bitterness, a fast hui gan and very good staying power both in the mouth and the gaiwan.

Tea weight: 400 grams

About Yunnan Sourcing View company

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5 Tasting Notes

87
581 tasting notes

I was not feeling the best today, so I took out this sample I got from derk thinking it could be a good tea to cheer me up and relax. I think that worked to some extent, the tea kept my attention for several hours and allowed my mind to abandon some toxic thoughts.

My main takeaway about the tea from this session is that it indeed has a strong cha qi, not really of the dreamy kind though. It did help dissolve my thoughts, but didn’t really enhance the creation of alternate reality to replace them. The other thing I will remember this tea for is how much it reminded me of Dan Cong oolongs, more than any other sheng I can remember. In particular, I got reminded of Dan Congs of the floral/vegetal/buttery kind. Personally, I didn’t find the bitterness overwhelming at all and the astringency was almost unnoticeable among other characteristics.

The tea has a piercing aroma of sauna, peat, coriander seeds, wood, incense and a hint of smoke initially. Later throughout the session, I also picked up distinct peach and pine scents. The taste starts off bitter, vegetal, and crisp with a significant walnut flavour. Around steep 4, it gets more tart and floral, displaying notes of citrus zest, parsley, light smoke and meat. Aftertaste is sweet and cooling with flavours such as peas and honey. It has a good huigan and longetivity, as one would expect in this price category.

The texture is very viscous and oily, but the liquor feels light in the mouth nonetheless. After swallowing, there is an interesting milky mouthfeel and a slightly cooling throatfeel. As I mentioned already, the cha qi is strong and grounding. Early on, the sensation involves a pressure in the head and I can feel blood pumping in my face. Then there is about half an hour that I have almost no recollection of. I did meditate a bit and then I might have been sleeping but maybe not, I really can’t remember. After I came back from the high, my whole body was incredibly warm and relaxed yet alert.

Flavors: Bitter, Butter, Citrus Zest, Coriander Seed, Floral, Honey, Meat, Parsley, Peach, Peas, Peat, Pine, Smoke, Tart, Vegetal, Walnut, Wood

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
derk

Hope you’re feeling better, Togo.

Something about this tea rang a bell for me. I bought a cake after having only one session and sending the rest of the sample packet to you. It’s interesting you said this puerh reminds you of a dancong; it did nothing of the sort for me, though maybe another year on record has transformed it. I look forward to breaking the cake soon.

Togo

I imagine it has changed faster being broken up than inside the cake, but I would be interested to know your thoughts when you revisit it. It’s definitely one of the best aged shengs I have tried. I reckon it probably rang a different bell for me than it did for you, but I have been coming back in my thoughts to yesterdays session, so it definitely left a mark :)

It’s crazy you sent me half of the sample you had, I am very grateful :)
I recently got more samples of aged pu’er as I am trying to explore the space and educate myself, so this fit into that objective as well.

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867 tasting notes

I can’t imagine how utterly sour, astringent and bitter this tea would’ve been several years ago.

The dry, warm, and rinsed leaf highlighted the region – beef jerky, leather, musky animal hide and tart prune. The golden-orange-brown liquor started off cloudy, smooth and mouth-filling with a fast-moving bitterness and some astringency. The sip began with tastes of subtle honey sweetness, tartness, incense, smoke, wood, floral perfume and perhaps a faint hint of butter with a meaty aftertaste. From there, the tastes lightened ever so gradually and the tartness became akin to a watered down apple cider which was also apparent in the aroma. As the flavors lessened, the liquor cleared. The bitterness grew slightly and the astringency and sourness seemed to exponentiate – tolerable with long breaks in between cups.

Luckily the interruptions were not at the hand of the sourness and astringency but were effected by the cha qi. As soon as the second steep, I could feel it growing quickly. I felt like the slowest moving grandfather clock in the world, simply existing in my own sense of time. I found myself in a slow, seated sway, a wooden ghost of some otherworld of physics. Very calm, zoned out, pulled downward (or opposite). Later I felt like an old woman, wise and very aged with warts, random sprouted hairs and at times a beard. What a trip. Backward shoulder rolls felt amazing. This transitioned into a strong pressure a few inches below my clavicle and an intense sleepiness. I had to lie down at 830 pm and fell into a narcotic trance. This was all on a full stomach. Beware drinking this tea without food.

Overall, this tea still needs plenty more aging. The leaf is surprisingly still very green with 8 years of age. I can’t say I’m drawn to the tea at this time. There are certainly highlights to its flavor profile, but I think this one needs to be stashed away and forgotten about, though lovingly checked upon like an old man living alone.

Preparation
Boiling 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
brutusK

Glad I’m not the only one who thought it was a meaty sheng, quite literally tasting like meat! I think we both had the same thought “wow this must have been AWFUL years ago”. Total agreement in everything you wrote here after that too :)

derk

I took a look at your review. Was this one not astringent for you? From what I remember of your pu recommendations, I’m surprised you rated this one so highly. Was it for the feels?

brutusK

Feels certainly helped, but that alone isn’t enough to have me LOVE a tea. This was strong for sure, but I didn’t find it too astringent. I had it again not too long ago with my brother and still thought the same

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89
61 tasting notes

5.4g, 100C, porcelain gaiwan 100mL. The last reviews on this were about 3 years ago so lets see what I think now that its had 8 years.

Dry leaf smells really good and complex already but I can’t put my finger on it…Once I rinse then it becomes apparent that this tea is going to start smoky….which I thought I didn’t like because it can be too harsh
In the early steeps I rapidly realize that this is a treat. The wet leaf smells like smoked sweet sausage. Just from two sips I’m already getting a lasting gan, this tea is so strong. But it isn’t heavy. Instead I’d describe it as uplifting. The taste is savory, strong, bitter and making me feel lightheaded. The cup is sweet but with that savory smoke going down without bitterness or astringency. Time has done this well.
Already its getting heavy and fills the mouth by middle steeps. It is neither drying nor sweet though, instead just heavy and savory.
By the end of this my burps were as if I had eaten a lot of bacon—yummy :). I highly recommend, even for people like myself who thought they didn’t like smoke-leaning sheng.

Flavors: Heavy, Meat, Musty, Smoked, Sweet

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70
17 tasting notes

Another one from the backlogs. The main reason I delayed writing about it so long is that I found it rather confusing… In the first session it was sweet and slightly citric, with good kuwei, overwhelming huigan, and a wonderfully calm and relaxing qi. Second session I could barely detect any flavor and the qi was very light as well. By the time I got to the last session, I had 7g leaf left and decided to use it all at once. The citric notes and bitterness came back, but with an almost metallic tinge to them this time. Happily, the qi was back to its original calming, sedating self. I’d like to try this tea again, but especially with the way the price has risen I don’t particularly want to gamble on a full cake. It was very interesting, but the middle brews of the sample were underwhelming and the metallic taste was a little difficult to appreciate. I honestly have no clue if I’d recommend it to anyone.
5g leaf, boiling water, 100ml white2tea ruyao gaiwan. Last steeping used 7g.

Flavors: Citrus, Honey, Metallic

jschergen

I didn’t like this tea. Gorgeous materials but I had a hard time getting anything out of it.

Z_LAMP

Yeah, it’s frustrating. It was honestly pretty interesting and enjoyable with extra leaf, but again, I’d want consistency and less funky metallic taste before I went any further. Hobbes liked one of their other teas (xin ban zhang), but all their stuff had almost doubled in price on YS by the time I made an order. Oh well.

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84
43 tasting notes

I’ve decided to revisit the beautiful Bulang mountain range this morning with a 2010 Gu Ming Xiang Ban Pen sheng. The wet leaves, which are of an impressive size and produce a delightful amber liquor, radiate an aroma that I can only describe as smoky vegetal (I believe this aroma is similar to the aroma found in the Lao Man E sheng I described not too long ago). Frankly, the aroma isn’t as impressive as say a Jingmai ,but I suppose this is expected from a Bulang. What is impressive is this teas profile and kou gan. The tea exhibits a pleasant transformation from a light bitterness to a subtle sweetness. It only takes a few sips of this tea to bring out a well balanced astringency and Hui Gan in the mouth. IMO, this tea is a fine tea. It has a lot of character. I look foward to drinking it a few months down the road! Perhaps an 84/100 is fair assessment.

Parameters : 4.5 g / 100 mL of water @ ~200 F

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 4 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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