Liquid Proust Teas

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Recent Tasting Notes

99

When I first tried this tea, the smell reminded me of roasting marshmallows over an open fire. The char is like cedar wood with a slightly menthol tingle to it. Because of the smell and the 60 hours of roasting, you might think you’d be overwhelmed by the roast. I fully expected those bitter, acidic, and harsh flavors you get from charcoalified tea leaves, but it is everything but that. The taste is so smooth, you don’t beleive it. It is soft, mellow, and relaxing. You can pick out the nuttiness of the roast and separate it from the vanilla and toffee sweetness of the tea. Every time I drink this, I want more of that flavor, but that’s not how this tea works. No matter how much you drink, it will not give you that punch of flavor. Instead, you need to put down the cup and let your tongue dry out. The smoothness lingers for a moment and then wanes to an intense tingling. Its almost like a slight electric current running through your tongue. The roasted nuttiness and tangy flavor is there when you inhale and the echos of the tea’s sweet vanilla come out when you exhale. All those flavors stick to your tongue and are a constant reminder of the tea long after you’ve finished your cup.

Flavors: Cedar, Char, Tannin, Toffee, Vanilla

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
ashmanra

I love a good TGY! Sounds like you had a good tea experience with this one.

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85

This cake is made for experimentation. While I don’t recommend getting the YOT stored cake, I’m really glad LP decided to mess with it. I see beerandbeancurd reviewed this and said “I don’t crave it, but I do find it interesting” and I have to say that sums this up perfectly. The storage that was added to an already strong, wet, and bitter cake adds some more flavors to distract you. It feels like it warms and wakes you up when you drink it. I don’t want to drink this a lot and I never pushed this past a few steeps, but I’m glad I got it and it will spend many years being slowly picked apart.

The rye barrel adds a big spicy note to both the taste and flavor. It also makes the slight sweetness in the tea taste a bit more like cocoa to me. There’s still tons of the dank wet storage and the bitter and astringent flavor from the original cake, but its much more acceptable here. It feels less intense and you can try to focus on the flavors from the rye barrel instead.

6g – 100ml – 15+ seconds – 100C
Smell: Wet, Acidic, Rye, Mildew
Taste: Wet, Earthy, Sour, Bitter, Rye, Char

Flavors: Bitter, Char, Rye, Sour, Wet Earth

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
ashmanra

Welcome to Steepster, Kyrox!

Kyrox

Thanks! Been coming here for reviews for a while and figured it’s time I start adding my own reviews to help other folks.

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96

Interesting, deeper flavor than it’s smell, and really tangy. Reminds me of the heartier citrus fruits like grapefruit, yet it is still soft. Slightly sour and sweet. Hints of watermelon and citrus peel. This is a wonderful tea and as it has sat in storage (70F 61%) for a year, it has improved even more.

Flavors: Acidic, Floral, Fruity, Grapefruit, Sweet, Watermelon

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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98

The one tea that made me question why I try new teas. The first time I tried this tea, I wrote that it somehow strikes a perfect balance between the smokey pine flavors that other lapsang teas have with the caramel and tangy notes of my ideal black tea. It is sweet and twisted, like liquid candy that spent the day in the smoker at my local BBQ joint. The smell alone of the dry leaves is almost overwhelming.

Flavors: Caramel, Honey, Pine, Powdered Sugar, Sap, Smoke, Tannin

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 6 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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April Sipdown Challenge – raise your cup to the tea farmers for Earth Day – bonus points for an earthy tea!

I didn’t add this to my cupboard because it is a sample that I received as a gift from Whiteantlers. Many thanks, and I miss you!

I decided to go with ripe puerh for this prompt because most of them have some earthy notes. Little did I know I was about to drink the earthiest puerh I have ever had.

Dry aroma was pure dirt, in the best way possible. I love the smell of freshly plowed fields and of petrichor. We live on the border between the Sandhills of NC and the Piedmont. Our soil is sandy and dry, and this puerh smells like when I crawl under a house into the dry, undisturbed crawlspace. (Yes, I have had to do this quite a few times as the elderly ladies on the street used to call on me to hit the reset button on their oil furnaces. Ha ha!)

There is no fishiness and no real aged manure/horse barn scent here, other than the dusty smell of a barn with an earthen floor. There is no mushroom scent. There is a strong minty or camphor tingle that builds as you drink but dissipates fairly quickly. Pleasant.

I have had four steeps thus far and will be having more throughout the day. I am glad I tried this one. It is a very enjoyable ripe pu.

Courtney

I haven’t gotten into pu’erh yet and find it fairly overwhelming, but your note has enticed me for this one haha!

ashmanra

PM your address and I will send what is left!

ashmanra

It is good resteeper, so even what I send will be small, I have made four more good steeps already!

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76

I took this cake (and its amazing Fu Dog wrapper) to work after comparing it to another very affordable cake I picked up from LP, a 7543 that I decided I liked more and wanted to keep at home. The lovely thing about cakes I take to work is that I feel I get to know them intimately and in a concentrated amount of time — a knowing that slowly picking through my tea drawers at home just doesn’t facilitate.

This way of drinking through a single cake also, perhaps, encourages broad-stroke descriptions, judgment in swaths after dozens of cups rather than a quiet sit with a tiny gaiwan.

What I’ve come to expect of this tea is a little funk up front, which (usually depending on the earliness of the hour and my corresponding constitution) I have rinsed a time or two. I tend not to rinse, for better or worse. This cake strikes me reliably as vegetal and tobacco; I have had exactly one second steep that was delightfully full-bodied with a touch of sweetness, and I’ve been waiting for a return of that bit of lovely ever since. There is not a pronounced amount of sweetness, spice, camphor, or forest here.

Most of my “sessions” (an overstatement if there ever was one) have been grandpa-style in a ceramic tumbler. I’m very often disappointed after adding a second round of water, and sometimes will throw a few more leaves in to compensate. Not a terribly long-lived expression. I’ve added ice a few times, to drink with takeout Thai, and it’s nice for that.

It’s been a solid little workhorse for a couple months now, but as I near the end of my cake I’m looking forward to cracking into something a little more exciting.

ashmanra

Great way to use up a cake! I have missed your notes. Hope your life is exuberantly joyful!

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Bought a 1-serving sample several years ago to give Vesper Chan puerh a try.

Right now, it’s a little too brassy for me, but I can feel a steady strength to this leaf that might indicate an ability to age into something very nice. For a young pressing, it’s also very balanced.

Flavors: Balanced, Bittersweet, Brass, Brisk, Cooling, Dates, Garlic, Honey, Juicy, Metallic, Orange, Orange Blossom, Orange Zest, Vegetables

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 7 g 4 OZ / 110 ML

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84

Solid tea from LP! Some pretty classic Xiaguan characteristics without any bitterness or astringency. Could probably steep this at boiling haha.

I can tell the storage has been pretty good for this one – definitely tastes semi-aged with only 12-13 yrs.

Dry leaf: Smoke
Wet leaf: Smoke, tobacco, grapes
Flavor: Smoke, tobacco, dough, sweet

Flavors: Bread Dough, Grapes, Smoke, Sweet, Tobacco

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82

Bought a cake of this just cuz it was cheap and I like huangpian. It serves its purpose well! Sweet, brews easily, calming, and no fuss. Not super complex, but it is a cheap tea and it is certainly good for the price. Some quite large leaves with big stems in this cake too.

Keep the good stuff coming, LP.

Flavors: Sweet, fruity, apple.

Flavors: Apple, Fruity, Sweet

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91

Bit of a powerhouse, strong but smoothed by the age/storage. Lots of mouthfeel and pucker. Lingering finish with a touch of sweet hui gan.

Long lasting leaves too, I stopped counting infusions after the 8th steep.

Flavors: Astringent, Bittersweet

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 14 g 5 OZ / 150 ML

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91

Enjoying this blend so far. Outclasses some other Pu’er I have at my desk.

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80

No notes yet. Add one?

Flavors: Camphor

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec 8 g 5 OZ / 160 ML

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Gongfu!

I’ve tried more than a handful or two of these alcohol barrel aged productions. Though typically delicious, one thing they often have in common is that whatever alcohol they’ve essentially been scented with typically steeps out entirely within two or maybe three (if you’re lucky) infusions. I don’t know if it comes down to the type of alcohol or the number of days it was barrel aged, but that’s not been my experience with this tea. The dry leaf smells very strongly of rye – like taking a sniff straight from the bottle. With strong notes of oak, spiced fruits, black pepper, and pumpernickel bread; this tea tastes very much of the rye it was aged with. Even after six or seven infusions, the taste still hadn’t fully gone away either. It really, truly did penetrate these leaves. Plus, as is typical of teas from the LaoManE region, this black tea packs some bitter bite and hearty astringency – it works brilliantly in conjunction with the rye though. Stroke of genius to combine the two.

I love weird and experimental teas, and for as long as I’ve known him, that’s something I’ve always been able to count on Andrew to deliver – whether it was back when he was dehydrating watermelon and other weird fruits for his blended tea ventures or now that his focus is centered more so on pure/traditional teas. Very happy to have caught this one when I had the chance!

Tea Photos: https://www.instagram.com/p/CytrQ_MO9Fx/?img_index=1

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1mfv_Qq3YvM

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84

I have two similarly hand-labeled envelopes of what I assume are both this same tea, likely hookup samples. Solid little black Darjeeling, withlinalool that made me realize I’ve developed a taste for linalool… and made me absolutely crave that potato-chip Darjeeling from What-Cha that I finished months ago. Sigh.

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86

I like a Cang’er. Pretty straightforward tobacco and sweetness with the expected doughy top note. My cake was not as pretty as the multi-colored leafy beaut that LP has on his website. Compression not too gnarly for an iron cake, though I should have strained after throwing in all the fannings my pick made. /leafspit

Flavors: Bread Dough, Sweet, Tannin, Tobacco

Marshall Weber

This one is on my bucket list. Glad you liked it!

beerandbeancurd

It’s so cheap — hard not to like it!

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82

Hoo, it seems I’ve overestimated my current capability to triumphantly return to Steepster with gusto. Life continues to be busy, and I’ve missed logging a lot of tea that I’ve poured down my gullet. Patience with myself is the hardest patience to practice.

I started this session last night and ended it this morning. The compression is so tight that the large bundle I broke off never broke up on its own — a phenomenon I had not experienced yet. After several long and frankly underwhelming steeps, I finally reached in and broke that thing up manually, then hit it hard and long for 2 or 3 licorice-laced cups that were legitimately enjoyable. I’ll be curious to see what a better break-up does for these leaves right from the get go.

Flavors: Licorice

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82

From beerandbeancurd – I hope that mountain living is treating you well.

Good balance of sweet and barely sour, never syrupy. Smooth fruity whiskey-reminiscent aftertaste early on. Big round taste — bready, dried leaves, vanilla and redfruits, liquid brown sugar. Hints to a bitter herb; beerandbeancurd’s “hyssop” fits well, maybe even mugwort. That herbal bitterness combines with a metallic tongue tingle. Some gentle camphor comes around, which I’m always a fan of.

Mellow and easy-going aged sheng huangpian that’s great for longer infusions. Never overwhelming, always good-tempered and a nice Friday wind-down. Glad I got to try!

Flavors: Bread, Brown Sugar, Camphor, Cocoa, Dry Leaves, Fruity, Herbs, Metallic, Red Fruits, Round, Smooth, Sweet, Vanilla, Whiskey, Wood

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 g 4 OZ / 110 ML
beerandbeancurd

Glad you enjoyed. I remember thinking how soft and beautiful these leaves looked.

The mountain is bringing me joy. You have been on my mind — I hope China was everything good for your soul.

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89

Really tasty, I would describe the mouthfeel as juicy? There’s a pleasant background astringency with a very forward medium roast oolong flavor profile. Hard to pick out single notes but if you have sampled Oolongs this will feel right at home. Bursting with good flavor, strong leaf to water ratio without adding bitterness thanks to the coin leaf format. Would buy again!

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 13 g 150 OZ / 4436 ML

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