14 Tasting Notes
This is really, really good. Probably a top three oolong for me, as it brings together most of the elements of oolong that I enjoy. First of all, it exists between sweet and roast. This multi-faceted flavor is far more complex than many the cheaper oolongs I’ve had, which I’ve enjoyed but this definitely brings new levels to the table. The roast reminds me of the dong ding from What-Cha, which I liked but did not love due to the one-dimensional taste that grew a tad boring as the steeps went on. This Da Hong Pao evolves as the sweetness and roast interact. Also, the energy it gives is really satisfying! It’s super soothing as well as warming.
I used around 4 grams in my 120ml gaiwan and used 195 degree water, steeping for random amounts of time (I’d wager around 30ish a steep after shorter beginning steepings).
Ohh yeah, this is a winner. I did about 4g in my 120ml gaiwan, starting with 10 seconds then, uh, not really paying much attention but more time in the following steeps. There was nice evolution and development through the process! Great aromas and a really cool bright/lime green liquor!
I woke up feeling groggy and a bit sick, and after enjoying 5 or so infusions of this tea, I’m in a far better place! It’s got the typical green tea aroma in that it’s grassy with hints of sweet corn, but it adds a lovely nuttiness alongside a slight, and enjoyable, sourness. It’s not going to blow your mind, but it just about fulfills everything great about green tea. Similar to the Classic Laoshan Black, it has a really nice energy! I feel both energized and soothed—this is the wonderful duality of tea.
I’ve had a few greens, and this is one of the most enjoyable. I really like Longjing, and this provides a nice change from that style while maintaining an interesting experience that Longjing provides.
Highly recommended, another winner from Scott and the Yunnan Sourcing team!
Woooooow this is probably my favorite black tea out of what I’ve had before. I feel like I’ve had some good ones before, but they’ve tended to be similarly malty with some variation of nuts or cooked fruit. This is a lovely chocolate, not very sweet but like a pleasant dark chocolate—full and toasty. As the infusions progress, it gets sweeter and less bitter but never overwhelmingly sweet. It also has a lovely energy, very invigorating but not super panicky which is crucial. Highly, highly recommended.
It’s raining and cold outside, this is a great tea for afternoons like this. Honestly, this is close enough to hot cocoa where I would never need hot cocoa. I also have the green tea variety of this and I’m very excited to try that and see if there’s any similarities!
I’ve had this since September when I threw it into my YS.us order. It’s quite good, especially at $6/50g. Fairly one-dimensional, but it offers a nice taste of sweet malt as YS describes it. I like the mouthfeel, it’s very refreshing while remaining thick-bodied. I much prefer YS’s “three aroma” bai mu dan: even though I enjoy this tea as well, the former is just more complex and an improvement in every way. Certainly very good as a nice tea to begin or end a day with, but don’t too much from it!
Received my puer sample order from Yunnan Sourcing last week, it’s been quite fun and tasty! I want to make sure I have all of them at least twice before I review, and so this is the first of the order to be reviewed.
As the water hits the leaf, a strong scent of the classic shou taste quickly emerges. The first brew is pretty dark compared to that of the few ripes I’ve tried, so I expected this to be a strongly tasting tea—I wasn’t wrong. There isn’t a whole lot of complexity here, but it’s pretty good with what it has. A fair amount of bitterness, which I’ve noticed that shou bitter is pretty different from sheng bitter, with the formal being similar to a black coffee bitter and the latter being more like bitter herbs. Of course, that makes perfect sense given the processing of ripe vs raw, but still a note of interest. Compared to the other ripe puer I’ve had, Man Tang Hong Te Ji is less sweet and has less clear taste tones. It’s just a fair amount of earthy depth with that top-of-mouth bitter and a hit of astringency. Nice and thick though, which offers a nice balance to the flavor profile.
To be perfectly honest, I’m still figuring out what my preferences are in terms of this category of tea. I’m slowly beginning to notice the differences between ripe teas, which at first all tasted like wet leaves slowly decaying on a forest floor (which is far from a bad thing). There are notes beyond this, though, and samples are allowing my palate to learn. Regardless, I enjoyed it because of the fact that ripe puer on a chilly autumn day is quickly becoming one of my favorite things.
EDIT: oh, I forgot to mention that this has a really powerful energy that I started feeling after the third cup, definitely less mellow than the energy I’ve gotten from other shou—seems to be more caffeine jumpy.
Holy heck, what a delectable tea! It’s a very complex sweet in that way white tea can be, I don’t even know if there’s a good way to describe it but it’s so darn tasty. I read on a blog (oolongowl I believe) that whites can benefit from higher temperatures, and that has been confirmed with this tea at least. I used 203F water throughout my steepings and the liquor has a lovely mouthfeel to go along with the taste. I also seem to get a nice energy from this tea even though I haven’t seen many people report about qi in white teas. Regardless, I have 50g of this and I would not be shocked if I buy more. This is a great lift after a long day and a rough week; it’s snowing inside but I have my lovely teas to keep me warm :)
Flavors: Sweet, Vegetal
Enjoying this lovely tea on a chilly Monday afternoon. Immediately when the hot water touches the leaves, they begin to unfurl and release a beautiful fragrance. It’s roasty, it’s warming, and pretty nutty. Gongfu style, 205F water, about 6.5g/120ml
This dong ding is smooth, and it tastes like a lesser version of the smell. It’s rather one-dimensional but that one dimension is pretty yummy. Definitely more notes of roast than anything else, but it’s creamy and fills the mouth nicely. Certainly a good tea to warm you up and get you into the day, but not the most mind-blowing experience ever. Recommended due to the price and the fact that it’s a solid tea overall. I’m really interested in trying more dong dings to get a feel for the range that this particular tea would fall into.
I really, really enjoy this oolong. The combination of fruity and malty is just so tasty, it smells as good as it tastes and is just delightful. This was one of the first “true teas” I ever got, and I’m on my second 50g bag now. Until last month when I got my gaiwan, I thoroughly loved drinking this tea western style. Brewing it gongfu is even more delightful. There is a depth to this tea that changed my view on tea forever, as you can note the depth even when drinking it western. It has an uplifting energy that matches the satisfying tastes. This is one of those teas that demonstrates how good tea can be, and it’s so accessible that I think everybody should try this if they’ve never had unflavored or loose leaf tea.
Flavors: Baked Bread, Cherry, Malt
Another raw from Liquid Proust’s intro set. This one doesn’t stand out to me as particularly fantastic, but it’s really a consistent and nice flavor. It’s definitely solid, with a “green-leaning” taste (is that a thing) but has good undertones as well. I’d describe the mouthfeel as medium thick and the cha qi as pretty powerful and enjoyable. The tea lasts a long time as well, the only issue being that it gets a bit boring after the 7th or 8th brew. Overall, positive rating from me!!
Flavors: Mushrooms, Vegetal
Had this generously sent to me by Liquid Proust in his intro to pu’erh package. I think I have messed up a fair amount of the raws I’ve had from that set, but I finally got a scale and this one came out really well! Sweet, a hint of bitterness, drying but not necessarily astringent, and very very long lasting. I got a nice energy from this tea as well! Really solid experience, I’m looking forward to trying more raw pu’erh with actual control over how much tea is in my gaiwan :^)