01 November, 2009

2003 CNNP "Yunnan Qiaomu"

$120 is a lot for what looks to be a CNNP release, despite the ornate wrapper! Thanks to GV for kindly providing the sample.

2003 Menghai YunnanQiaomu
Yunnan Qiaomu Bing

Puerh Shop describes this as being from Banzhang. I've given up hoping for actual qiaomu [CHEEOW-MOO, arbor] from big labels, let alone rare Banzhang qiaomu. Isn't it marginally depressing that CNNP would put "qiaomu" in the name of this cake? Well, we all know the drill by now. C'est la vie!

Unlike the regular (modern) CNNP mess, the leaves are decently-sized, and smell pleasantly clean and sweet:

2003 Menghai YunnanQiaomu
Restoring my faith in modern CNNP?

This is straight-forward: it has an orthodox aroma of white sugar in the wenxiangbei [aroma cup], and turns out into a crisp and savoury soup. It tastes a lot of like decent CNNP, in fact, being simple and strong. Underneath its considerable bitternes is a wisp of age.

I am concerned that, in its six years, this cake has lost a lot already - there is not much more here than the very simplest of pu'er characteristics and some bitterness. It has tons of roughness about it.

I am left with my impression of modern CNNP unchanged: this tea becomes nasty, brutish, and short.

Pair o Butterflies
Here are some butterflies to make me feel better


Maitre_Tea said...

What date to you put to "modern" CNNP? I have a 2002 production that I'm quite fond of, and although it's a bit brutish, it's quite endearing to my tastes. Your dim outlook on modern CNNP productions is making me re-think if I should order a cake

Hobbes said...

Dear Maitre_Tea,

Modern CNNP referring to the recent era in which Menghai and Xiaguan have not been obliged to put their output under the label. That's not to say that there are no good teas under the modern CNNP label, of course - just the overwhelming majority. :)



Tony Shlongini said...

Where tea goes to die
and Hobbes goes to cry.

Scotto said...

I think those are moths.... ;-)


Hobbes said...

I'm sure they're carrion insects of some description.

Darned CNNP!

shibumi said...


Great work as always, been checking your blog pretty often. I've decided to upkeep my blog more frequently. Want to trade blogrolls?

Hobbes said...

Thanks, Shibumi - I look forward to reading more of your blog over the coming weeks! Keep up the good work!



Anonymous said...

The endless search for the actual among the misrepresented with Puerh. It's not as bad now as it was a few years ago when the bubble was inflating so big. But there's still plenty of deception as to what's wild, ancient, etc. --Spirituality of Tea