03 November, 2009

2008 Mengyang Guoyan "Yiwu Chahuang"

I don't rate Mengyang Guoyan tea very highly. Maybe this is because I just haven't look far enough, but they seldom impress - with the exception of the 2005 Lao Banzhang private production (which I notice has crept up from $33 earlier this year to its current price of $56).

These Mengyang Guoyan teas are, at least, fresh and energetic.





It's name means "Yiwu Tea Emperor". It is sold for a modest $20 at YS under the name "Queen of Yiwu" - I think the gender switch may have crept in as a translation error! It's a popular cake on Taobao, too, being sold by most large vendors.

Big, pretty leaves make me wonder if this Mengyang Guoyan production is going to buck the trend: they have a big, pretty scent. The aroma leaps from the leaves, as if anxious to get started.


2008 Guoyan YiwuChahuang


They don't come much more yellow than this (pictured below), but it quickly darkens to orange in the open air. Funnily enough, the aroma itself leaves a cooling sensation in the nose, as sometimes happens in the mouth with thick, active teas. I take this to be another good sign!

Pleasant Yiwu mushrooms, a gradual huigan... but it's a bit raw in the finish.


2008 Guoyan YiwuChahuang


It's one of the better teas that I've had from Mengyang Guoyan, but it's still decidedly second class. That said, it's very inexpensive (costing about the same as Dayi from most vendors), and so perhaps we shouldn't expect miracles. Not impressive, but not awful, this is "filler" at its best.


(Cf. Maitre_Tea's discussion of this tea.)

11 comments:

Maitre_Tea said...

what a coincidence! I just reviewed this the other day, though I was much harsher on it than you were...

Hobbes said...

Noted, thanks! I've added a link in my article. Such are the dangers of blindly publishing something I'd written back in October :)


Toodlepip,

Hobbes

Terje said...

I just love it when Hobbes suddenly review something that I have a sample of - I drank this tea last evening, but fould it too light. I had to use more than the usual amount of leaves and the tastes never really spoke to me. The leaves look great, but there no greatness within - it doesn't hit you.

Hobbes said...

Dear Terje,

I never really clicked with Mengyang Guoyan - too mediocre. I often wonder why the on-line vendors seem to stock so much of it! Perhaps its inexpensiveness allows more comfortable margins. :)


Toodlepip,

Hobbes

Terje said...

I've only sampled this one and it feels too Haiwan - also a mediocre brand, I think. Luckily, I've just bought a couple of tubes of 2006 Bao Yan Jin Cha, some 2005 Bao Yan bricks and the Xiaguan FT "Exquisite Elegance". Just love everything Bao Yan-ish.

By the way, Hobbes - a friend of mine is going to Hong Kong in november (he is chinese, but grew up in the land of vikings), and I was wondering if you had any recommendartions on where to buy either nice pots or tea in Hong Kong?

Sincerely
Terje

ps. the reviews have been great lately, as always.

Hobbes said...

Dear Terje,

I'm afraid I've never been to Hong Kong, but I understand that the classic places to visit include the "Best Teahouse". I may be going there in late December, depending on various circumstances, so look forward to finding out for myself!


Toodlepip,

Hobbes

flo said...

I have twice heard favorably of sun sing teas by amateurs who have been to hong kong (they have a site :
http://www.sunsingtea.com/en/index.php) ; I have myself never been to HK nor tried sun sing so take it only as "hearsay" -- but maybe this is a vendor worth visiting.

Terje said...

Great! Thanks! I'll check it out! I just can't let a friend go to China without forcing him to pick up some exciting tea/teaware. I need to give him refrences or else he'll probably buy some 2009 CNNP tea.

Puerh Guy said...

Ha! Pleasant mushrooms sounds good to me. Sounds enchanted forest. I'm just not too critical of how Puerhs taste. They're all somehow worthy in my opinion. --Spirituality of Tea

Maitre_Tea said...

Maybe it's popularity has to do with how inoffensive it is, and how gorgeous the leaves are. Did you brew using a lot of leaf? It usually helps with this one...though sadly not enough to redeem it

Hobbes said...

Dear Maitre_Tea,

That's a good point - I used quite a large quantity of leaf. there's no compensation for mediocre tea, though :)


Toodlepip,

Hobbes