Wuyi Origin

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Recent Tasting Notes

93

(2023 Harvest) Darker roast. Malty. Honey. Hay. Dried flowers.

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94

(2023 Harvest) Light roast. So pretty. Lemon verbena. Greenish oolong color.

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90

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88

This is the other new unsmoked lapsang I bought from Wuyi Origin in my Black Friday order. The name intrigued me, though I honestly couldn’t tell you what a bamboo forest should smell like. I steeped 6 g of leaf in 120 ml of 195F water for 10, 12, 15, 18, 20, 25, 30, 40, 50, 60, 90, 120, and 240 seconds, plus some long, uncounted steeps.

The dry aroma is of honey, sweet potato, wood, florals, and something I’ll call bamboo. The first steep has notes of honey, malt, wood, sweet potato, bamboo, and lemon. The tea is a bit drying. The next steep has more sweet potato, lemon, orange, orchid, honey, bamboo, and tannins, with a squashy citrus feeling and some dryness. Steeps three and four give me ethereal orchid, lilac, and bamboo, plus honey, citrus, sweet potato, and tannins. There’s a lovely honey, floral aftertaste. The next few rounds are floral, a bit lemony, and full of honey, tannins, bamboo, and wood. The final steeps feature honey, malt, earth, minerals, grass, wood, and tannins, though they’re still pleasant enough to drink.

Like all of Wuyi Origin’s lapsangs, this is a high-quality tea that I enjoy. I like the citrus, florals, and that elusive taste of bamboo, though I’m not such a fan of the tannins. It won’t replace their Wild Lapsang in my heart, but that’s a high bar to jump over.

Flavors: Bamboo, Citrus, Drying, Earth, Floral, Grass, Honey, Lemon, Lilac, Malt, Mineral, Orange, Orchid, Squash, Sweet, Sweet Potatoes, Tannin, Wood

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 6 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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84

I apparently bought this tea in 2021 when I was exploring Jin Jun Mei. Since then, I’ve decided that unsmoked lapsang is usually fruitier, not to mention a better value, although it’s nice to revisit JJM occasionally. I steeped 6 g of leaf in 120 ml of 195F water for 10, 12, 15, 18, 20, 25, 30, 40, 50, 60, 90, 120, and 240 seconds, plus some long, uncounted steeps.

The dry aroma of this fuzzy Jin Jun Mei is of honey, honeysuckle, sweet potato, malt, and cocoa. The first steep has notes of butter, honeysuckle, sweet potato, honey, and faint malt. The tea is fairly thick and has a sweet, lingering aftertaste. Steep two adds more florality, honey, and starchy sweet potato, with some hints of bread and cocoa. The next couple steeps are very floral, with honeysuckle and something I’ll call violet. There’s lots of sweet potato and honey, though the cocoa has disappeared. The next few steeps offer consistent honey, caramel, bread, sweet potato, malt, and honeysuckle/violet florals, with no bitterness and a very sweet profile. By steep nine or so, the tea fades into something that’s primarily sweet potato, caramel, and faint malt, still without any bitterness or tannins. A few tannins appear near the very end of the session, when the tea is generically bready, malty, and squashy.

This Jin Jun Mei isn’t particularly complex, but the flavours that are present are nice. I particularly like the heady florality and lack of bitterness. As Daylon mentioned, this tea is all about the sweet potato, although I wish there’d been a bit more cocoa as well. This isn’t my favourite tea from Wuyi Origin, but it is representative of the high quality of the hongcha this vendor offers.

Flavors: Bread, Butter, Caramel, Cocoa, Floral, Honey, Honeysuckle, Malt, Squash, Sweet, Sweet Potatoes, Thick, Violet

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 6 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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80
drank Mi Lan Xiang by Wuyi Origin
1891 tasting notes

A tea from Leafhopper — Thank you!
Took tihs one, weighted — 6.7 grams = 1 session worth. Was the pouch more full and I took some for western steeping before? I have no idea. Anyway, now it’s gone.

Wet leaf aromas brought me to the orchard with red apples on some rock hill; as it was sweet as red apples but somehow wet rocks and mineral in the same time. A little woody as well, well those are trunks and branches of the trees in the imagined orchard I suppose. Some more tropical notes as the leaves absorbed a bit more of the humidity in closed gaiwan.

From my experience I prepare dancongs with rapid first steeps, with prolonged ones later in the session.

1st steep — 10 seconds
It’s much higher in the minerality than I thought, distinctive “wet rocks” and wood, some little sweet notes of red fruits and mostly its skins. Partially “pleasantly sour”.

2nd steep — 20 seconds
Previous notes, but stronger. A lot stronger. Viscous and oily, as Togo mentions.

3rd steep — 10 seconds
Still quite mineral but fruit notes are more present noticeable. Sadly, it’s the skins of the apples, not the fruit itself yet. Aroma is lovely though, somehow woody and floral. Spring fruit trees.

4th steep — 20 seconds
Unripe apple flavour with still high minerality. It’s like biting the apple and then licking the stone. Aroma is very same to previous steep. Long mineral mouthfeel.

5th steep — 30 seconds
Finally, fruity notes are here! The minaral aftertaste remains, but sips are pleasant and fine. Also I have noticed some floral notes in this steep in flavour as well.

6st steep — 45 seconds
Drank lukewarm, still full of flavour and very similar to previous steep too. The minerality isn’t that strong anymore and thus it is much milder for stomach as well.

7th steep — 1 minute
Definitely more light wood notes are here, minerality seems to be gone; smooth and mild flavours. Sadly, also apple notes are gone.

8th steep — 2 minutes
Mellow and somehow sweet? Sweet woody taste. Weird, but that’s what I am finding out in this steep. Some astringency in the background.

9th and last — 5 minutes
I ran out of water in my thermos and tea sounds a bit finished based on the previous steep flavours, so I call it done. I don’t recall when I had 9 steeps tea last time; moreover still with flavours!
This steep was again very similar to previous one. A more astringent though, but 5 minutes steep is loooong one.

Butter biscuits were great food pairing. Rating probably is impacted by that I am not really fan of dancongs. They tend to be so mineral or too floral to me. This is no exception.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 7 g 4 OZ / 125 ML

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90

Wuyi Origin usually sources their Old Bush Lapsang from Gua Dun, but in 2023, they decided to get some leaves from Ma Su as well. They warned of some bitterness, but I’ve liked their lapsangs so much that I decided to give this one a try. I steeped 6 g of leaf in 120 ml of 195F water for 10, 12, 15, 18, 20, 25, 30, 40, 50, 60, 90, 120, and 240 seconds, plus some long, uncounted steeps.

The dry aroma is of oakwood, maple syrup, honey, florals, and malt. The first steep has notes of bread, sweet potato, lemon, maple syrup, soy sauce, honey, florals, malt, and wood. The next steep adds some minerals and light tannins, and the florals resolve into orchids and violets. Like the regular Old Bush Lapsang, this tea is smooth and has a viscous, silky texture. The next couple steeps seem more like squash than sweet potato, with a sweet, floral quality and very mild wood and tannins. Steeps five and six are still sweet and squashy, I’d say almost like pumpkin. I get minerals in the tea and the aftertaste, and the lemon is less bright. After a few more steeps, the tea does acquire some woody, tannic bitterness, but it’s still balanced by the squashy sweetness. The final steeps feature bread, malt, honey, squash, wood, earth, minerals, and tannins.

This Ma Su Old Bush Lapsang has the promised tannins, but they don’t distract too much from everything else that’s going on and serve to balance the sweetness. I haven’t had their regular OBLS for a while, but this one seems even more squashy and sweet. It also has great longevity. I generally like more florals and fruit in my lapsangs, but this is a very high-quality tea that I’ll miss. The rest of it is going to Daylon and I resisted the urge to buy more during their recent sale (and am regretting it after this last session).

Flavors: Bitter, Bread, Earth, Floral, Honey, Lemon, Malt, Maple Syrup, Mineral, Oak, Orchid, Pumpkin, Smooth, Soy Sauce, Squash, Sweet, Sweet Potatoes, Tannin, Violet, Viscous, Wood

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 6 g 4 OZ / 120 ML

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94

(2023 harvest) Extremely subtle, almost clear in the cup.

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90
drank Mei Zhan by Wuyi Origin
145 tasting notes

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92

(2023 harvest) Peach schnapps! Almost saccharine but pretty fun.

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96

(2023 harvest) Heavenly. Floral, filled with vivid chocolate and malt notes. Really one of the top black teas I’ve ever tried. So warming and elegant.

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90

(2023 harvest) An earthy, less overtly floral and green rendition of Ya Shi. Maybe slightly less exuberant, but compensates with its own subtle complexity.

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90

(2023 harvest) Some cocoa on the nose. A bit of a smokey, mesquite barbecue note, especially in further steeps. Some lactofermented, briney notes. Not quite the hi definition of the other WO teas, but very good overall.

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94

(2023 harvest) Chocolate, toasted coconut! High toned confectionary perfume. So creamy and delicious. Palate deepens with notes of cinammon, salted caramel, butterscotch, and Hershey’s kisses. Real perception of sweetness while this also has a little lactic, sour note. And there’s a wild, slightly herbal, thrilling, satisfyingly brisk streak through the palate. Very well integrated. In thrall to WO teas.

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96
drank Qi Dan (奇丹) by Wuyi Origin
145 tasting notes

(2023 harvest) Dark soup. Totally wild aromatically. So floral. Like a tropical butterfly garden. Also a deep forest wet moss smell. Mountain mist. And some hints of cocoa nibs and cocoa butter. Heavier roast than some of the other yancha but so finely delineated. Very brisk on the palate. Lasts for many steeps.

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92

(2023 harvest) Complex notes with cinnamon, walnut, flowers. Second steep is different and very pretty. Some chocolate, chili pepper and baking spice. Very balanced, deep roast. Palate is very smooth.

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80

This is a 2020 harvest and another tea from Leafhopper, thank you again! Also today 2 teas are finished, though I don’t count those as a sipdowns as both had only one session. But it still counts in total quantity of tea. And in my stock system, the quantity is zero too.

Anyway, I preheated the gaiwan, filled the thermos, added the leaves to the preheated gaiwan and I got somehow nice, tobacco aroma.

Gongfu / 5 grams / 125 ml / 90°C
First steep, 10 seconds
The wet leaves aroma changed towards sweet notes, maybe yams or other sweet potatoes, liquid is sweet, but without much to write about. Was it too short?

Second steep, 15 seconds
Definitely sweeter, but I have been expecting more complexity. There are hints of stonefruits with powder sugar aftertaste. Wet leaves lean towards floral, orchid notes.

Third steep, 20 seconds
Definitely I got the florals more than fruits, very much orchids in aroma and flavor, slighlty woody, sweet and stonefruits in taste.

4th steep, 30 seconds
This one brought into the starlight the fruity notes, stonefruits to be more exact, definitely cherries and plums in flavours, along with honey and slight woody note. Definitely most flavourful and most interesting steep so far. Nice mouthfeel here as well.

5th steep, 40 seconds
Wet leaves smell like crate of fruits, you know, that fruity sweet whiff, with woody notes. The brew stays sweet and stonefruity, smooth and mouthfeel is still nice.

6th steep, 50 seconds (or so) got little distracted
Fruity notes are weaker, woody notes started to be stronger. One… two steeps remaining for this tea. But nevertheless, it’s still okay.

7th steep, 60 seconds
Well, that’s all from this tea apparently.

There was weak start, great body and flavours in the middle steeps, but also fades quite quickly. The flavour profile is interesting, very fruity in the end, but on the other hand I think that longevity of this tea could be better. But honestly, I don’t think this is my favorite flavour profile, I think I prefer a bit other black teas, for instance Indian/Nepalese and definitely Georgian teas are my all time favourites. But you have to try teas which you aren’t that familiar with to broaden your horizons.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 5 g 4 OZ / 125 ML
Leafhopper

Glad you enjoyed this tea! I liked the stonefruit and also remember it being quite floral.

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93
drank Xing Ren Xiang by Wuyi Origin
145 tasting notes

(2023 harvest) Wow. So delicate. Almond aroma, orange blossom. Raw nut, walnut skin. Some soothing green leafiness, just a hint of orange zest. Really gentle roast, oatmeal porridge with a hint of brown sugar.

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96
drank Mi Lan Xiang by Wuyi Origin
145 tasting notes

(2023 harvest) Heartbreakingly pretty aromas. As pretty as an orchid. High toned, delicious.

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95

(2023 harvest) Wow, this is so pretty. Has a wonderful scent of earth, lemon, bergamot and roast persimmon. Body is brisk but then leads into an extremely malty, creamy satisfying finish.

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93

(2023 harvest) Fragrant! Cinammon and tamarind and floral garden. Has that unique ya shi aroma. Intoxicating nose; silky, brisk and pretty palate.

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My sixth grade boys are like German Shepherd puppies—rowdy but trainable. My sixth grade girls are like Siamese cats on steroids—logic does not work, threats do not work, and they stare straight through you like you’re a glass window. Both camps were at meter-peaking hyperactivity levels today.

Which is why I’m sitting peacefully in a sunbeam watching Minnie nap close to the Christmas tree and reveling in one last cup of derk’s light, slightly buttery green tea. (I hadn’t noticed the buttery part before.) Quiet is good. Quiet is better when you’re holding a cup thoughtfully selected by a friend.

ashmanra

Ah, that Christmas-break-is-almost-here energy! Rest!

Tiffany :)

I love your descriptions of your students. :) Hoping you are finding more chances to sneak in some quiet moments in the chaos of December.

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Rain! Two delicious mornings waking up to it. You can just hear the ground going ahhhhhh. We celebrated with a lunch out and a dessert at a little hometown ice cream gem (everything made-in store) that offers you the option of sitting inside a salvaged railroad mail car (the labels are still on the sorting boxes) or outside on the porch in rocking chairs. We rocked.

I’m so glad I had a little bit of this left to enjoy, derk, on an evening that finally didn’t require AC going full blast. I had no new revelations as I enjoyed it again, but it is a simply enjoyable, not fussy, sweet and gentle little green tea. As you mentioned in one of your reviews, it is a good evening cup—doesn’t mess with your rest. Thank you again.

derk

You’re welcome, g.

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