• Gongfucha,  Puerhtea,  Raw,  Tea Review,  Teaappreciation,  Teainfo,  Teareview

    2015 Bingdao Raw Pu Erh Tea

    2015 Raw Pu Erh tea from Bingdao, Lingcan. Dry cake.

    Basic Info about this Tea

    • From Bingdao, Yunnan China
    • 200 to 300 year old tea trees
    • 180 dollars/200g cake
    • 1800 metres                                          

      The landscape terroir of the Bingdao Raw Pu Erh Tea

    Brewing Parameters

    Temperature (93 to 95 degrees celsius)

    Brewing Vessel (small Jingdezhen gaiwan around 90 ml)

    Grams of Leaves ( 6 grams)

    Steeping Time ( less than 3 seconds per infusion, increasing by 2 seconds every 5 infusions)

     

    Main Info

    Number of Total Steeps (more than 15)

    Aroma of Dry Leaves ( rich greens, vegital, and very clean)

    Aroma of Wet Leaves ( dry plum, heavy longan, a hint of peach)

    Taste Profile ( salty caramel, freshly boiled skinless potatoes, and a rush of honeysuckle)    

    The wet leaves of the infusion from the Bingdao Tea.

    Texture Profile ( extra smooth, easy to drink)

    Feeling/ Aftertaste ( strong chi, cool to the body and recommend during summer)

    Poetic Expression ( The moment you inhale and exhale, your body feels as if the tea has washed all impurities, scars and deep trauma)

    On May 31st, I invited my friend over for a session of pu erh tea, and we wanted to experiment what may happen if we drink an overload of gushu pu erh in one hour. I wanted to show him that tea isn’t just a beverage, but a study of oneself, a study of the mind. Everytime you drink tea, you should always connect yourself and your knowledge to really investigate what there is to the tea. Tea is like your friend, and you have to figure that person out. The character, the flaws, and the great potentials. Eventually, as you figure out this friend, you may be able to find out about yourself, because how you perceive something will teach you how your mind really works. Now, as we moved on, we slowly became more tea drunk, and started talking more loudly, and really got to experience how tea affects our body & soul. I have to also say that this tea is not very bouncy compared to other gushu raw pu erhs, and I guess that is because of the age of the tea trees, and also because this tea wasn’t at all bitter, which means it contains less polyphenols, meaning you will feel less active and more quiet, peaceful, but still aware. This Bingdao was exceptional, and very tasty. Overall, if I have the right to, I would rate this 9/10 stars. It has wonderful aromatics, great texture, but wanted a little bit more punch. The softness is truly awesome, but as a young raw, I just hoped to get a little more kick in the later infusions after the 11 or 12th. It is a pricy cake, but it is not easy to get great material like this from Bingdao, Lingcan as recently the prices are crazy for the real stuff. You can contact Lillian Li at lillian@spiritea.ca and ask her for some smaller portions like 25 grams or 50 grams. Definitely would recommend her studio, and the place is gorgeous, as the gallery is located right in front of the sea near Waterfront in downtown Vancouver.  This was a wonderful experience, and I hope I and you can have many more experiences like this to come in the near future.

    The beautiful liquor of the Bingdao Raw Pu Erh Tea.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

  • Gongfucha,  Puerhtea,  Raw,  Ripe,  Teaappreciation,  Teainfo,  Teareview

    Winter Collection – A 1976 Raw and Ripe Loose Pu Erh

    Winter Collection

    40年陈冬藏生散

    The liquor of this beauty. 40 years old Pu Erh Tea.
    1976 Raw and Ripe Pu Erh from six different mountains. Sample of 10 g.

    Basic info about this rare tea:
    – Half raw and ripe Pu Erh
    – From 1976
    – A mixed material between different mountains.
    – $2 a gram

    Brewing Parameters

    Temperature ( 96 to 98 degrees celsius)
    Brewing Vessel ( Yixing Hongni Factory 1 pot from 1990)
    Grams of Leaves ( 8 grams)
    Steeping Time ( less than 5 seconds per infusion, and every 5 infusions increasing the time by 5 to 10 seconds)

     

    Main Info

    Number of Total Steepings: Over 16 strong infusions.
    Aroma of Dry Leaves: Brown sugar, sweet ginseng
    Aroma of Wet Leaves: Cinnamon cookies, dried dates.
    Taste Profile: Pure agarwood, Chestnut cream
    Texture Profile: Beginning is very smooth, but when passing the throat, intense
    Feeling/Aftertaste: Extremely relaxed, every muscle feels refreshed.
    Poetic Expression: “ The tea feels like a thief trying to steal from an empty house.” “Nothing to take, nothing to lose.”

    Take a look at the mind and observe it, how it moves, how it feels, where our thoughts and understandings go and why it happens. Our mind is like a crazy monkey that cannot be controlled, yet when I drink this tea I felt as if somehow I am watching a movie happening inside of me, while I was standing apart from myself and just observing. The unique colours in the pitcher wehn brewed really shows the multiple layers of minerals, energies, and great storage. The mouthfeel being incredibly smooth to start, as it builds complexity within the throat and chest, it starts to move the energy and the “shoulder droppings” start to happen. By “shoulders dropping, I mean when you take a sip it relaxes your shoulders, and as it goes down to the stomach, you feel your shoulders drop down.

    Can you see the bloody light coming though the beasty brown?

    Keira told me that this tea was a half raw/half ripe tea, so the cooked aspect really shows in the beginning and is powerfully dark, but the lingering aftertaste and the hui gan definitely shows the potential of the raw nature it has. The agarwood incense is very strong, and the aftertaste of longan is amazing. This is such an amazing aged Pu Erh which usually signifies teas that were very astringent and bitter to begin with, but because it is aged for over 40 years, the tea has lost some of the original characteristics that may have been unpleasant and transformed into pure delight. If I am honest, I think this tea will be better appreciated and be loved by tea lovers who have some knowledge about Pu Erh and preferably has tried a couple aged Pu Erhs. The loose blend creates interesting notes within my mouth, and I think this is one of the most complex aged Pu Erhs I have ever had. But miraculously, it still does have a slight bitterness at the end, even though it has been aging for over 42 years. It means the enzymes are still trying to ferment this tea even more, as Pu Erh teas have no boundary to age.
    Proper storage and humidity will keep the enzymes alive, tea healthy and taste beautiful. The storage for this tea was probably half Guangdong or HK storage, and half dryer storage. I do notice the slight wetness, but this doesn’t make the tea lesser in quality at all. It’s truly a wonderful tea to share at a special moment, cherishing for whatever that’s happening, making it a memorable one by using this hidden gem as the performer to dance in your soul.

     

  • Tea Review

    Review | 2013 White Tea, Aged Shou Mei from Fuding

    This is a tea review of my experience with white tea, aged Shou Mei ,  from Fuding. It was given to me from my friend, Keira, from Vancouver.  She works at Silver Crescent Tea, in downtown Vancouver, BC.

    The wet leaves of the 2013 Aged White Tea

    Basic Info about this Tea

    • From Fuding, Fujian
    • 2013
    • Da Bai or large white leaves cultivar

    Temperature: (95 degrees)

    Brewing Vessel: ( small Jingdezhen Gaiwan 90ml)

    Grams of leaves: (6 grams)

    Steeping Time : (Less than 4 seconds per infusion, increasing 5 seconds per two infusions)

    Flavour:  Wet hay, brown sugar, and a hint of nectarines.

    Metaphor:  Like clouds

    Texture: Velvetly soft, feels like silk.

    Strengths: sweet, long lasting mouthfeel and lots of energy .

    Weakness: Too vegan, need more cream. I was expecting more cream.

    My experience today was something fascinating. Today as it was cloudy and wet, I needed something soft and refreshing, so I chose to have a session of aged white tea.  Somehow I felt like I was drinking pure water. No tea, like as if my taste buds were not working. Well, that’s not really the case. I felt as if the tea and I were one, and we were merging together as my awareness increases. The tea is inseparable, and as if I became one with the tea. Tea making is not only a practice of awareness and art, but in fact a yoga, a meditation that involves your wisdom, prajna aspect and your compassion, the karuna aspect. The wisdom aspect is the part that you use as the knowledge, which is everything that you know, and will know. Every perspective, movement, gesture, comes from knowledge and understanding, and this is the wisdom aspect of making the tea. The karuna aspect will be the motivation, energy and force.

    What makes you create the cup of tea, is through the aspiration, intention, and the creation of thought. Through focusing on these two points, our soul can be digged deeper, and making tea can really explain our nature of mind. When I was enjoying this tea, this is the feeling I got because of the richness of nutrients of the leaves, making me feel much more open and flexible. When you drink good tea, it is much more easier to activate your chi, and see the results for yourself. I really recommend this tea if you are interested to discover something more, a deeper experience, and the way of tea yoga. If I had to rate this tea out of 10, I would give it a good 7.5 out of 10. It is decent, very good, but not some I would die for. I would’ve liked if more creaminess and if the aroma is richer and more persistent.  That would be the most ideal. However, in general, this was a very enjoyable aged Shou Mei tea.