30 December, 2013

Aging Tea: A Mixed Bag

I have been sampling my own shelves widely, of late, and have come to some conclusions on the relative merits of my cakes ability to age.  (In each case, I have added notes to the original articles, which you are invited to inspect by following the corresponding links.)

The Good

The 7542-801 is quite good, although a little akin to a "dry storage" cake. The 7532-801 is better - it tastes more humid and more developed, and does not have the "dry storage" straw of the 7542-801.  Oddly, the 7542-901 is absolutely first-class.  Made just one year later, it is dark and heavy in that classical Dayi manner, and tastes very nicely aged indeed.  I suspect that most people would enjoy it - they would certainly enjoy it for the sub-$10 price in 2009.

Another success story is our aging experiment in central China, where Chinese Mama and Baba have recently brought us a few tong from our stores there.  The 1997 Laojunshan (pictured below), being one such cake brought to England, even though it is shupu, is heavy, round, and excessively sweet with old vanilla.  I look forward to trying the shengpu that we have.

My post-viva Hongjie cakes, bought in 2009 in Maliandao, when my dear wife was unknowingly carrying Xiaohu, our eldest son, has come on very well (much like dear Xiaohu himself!).  The change in the tea-leaves from their original green to a husky red-orange is very encouraging.

Finally, the 1996 Xiaguan bricks from Maliandao (pictured below) are coming on a treat - somehow, they are superdense carriers of vanilla and smooth huigan.

The Not-So-Good

Oddly, the 2003 Zitenglu Zipinhao [Wysteria Teahouse purple-label], pictured below, fits in this category. The original sample that I tried, stored in Singapore, stopped the clocks and was unfathomably excellent.  The actual cake, stored in Taiwan, was less amazing.  I managed to overcome some of this simply by using many more leaves of the Taiwanese-stored cake, which got it a little closer to the Singaporean version.

Perhaps most concerning of all, the 2011 Yunzhiyuan "Autumnal Xikong" (pictured below) has collapsed into tasting like purple tea.  I am deeply concerned for its future, and will take this as a warning concerning the purchase of super-sweet, unaged autumnal cakes in future.

Tea is such an education, and an experiment in itself.

27 December, 2013

Crab's What?

By virtue of the time-tunnelling effect of blogging, while I am writing this on an afternoon in late September, I suspect that my words will have travelled forward in time to be read by you, Gentle Reader, just after Boxing Day.  Though it seems strange to me in September, it will undoubtedly seem quite normal in December, for me to extend to you the season's greetings.  The season of Christmas (the time of reading), that is, not the season of mid-autumn (the time of writing).  Time-travel was always complex.

While nowhere near the Christmas period, I have just finished a session with two samples sent kindly by Tea Urchin some time ago (perhaps in 2011?).  This first cake is a "2002 Lincang", which is all that is known about it - Eugene's pretty web-site doesn't seem to mention it.  It seems to have been a zhuancha [brick-tea], as pictured above.  This is also apparently in the grade of the leaves, which have a homely "leftovers" feel to them.  The scent is sweet, with some age.

"Straightforward and quite strong" is my summary of this Lincang cake.  It has the red maltiness of a few years, but I would be very surprised if this were older than 6 or 7 years old - certainly, the supposed 11 years of aging are not apparent.  Perhaps it was stored in a state of preservation.  What we do have is a bold, uncomplicated sweetness that performs well and gets me ready for the "main act"...

...the eponymous "crab's feet", or pangxiejiao [aprrox. paang-shee-air-djow].

I have rather enjoyed cakes laced with pangxiejiao before.  It is a vine that grows on the pu'ercha trees in the Jingmaishan region, and whose flavour seems to complement that of the pu'ercha leaves with which is is sometimes mixed.  Imagine my surprise, then, when I opened the packet to reveal...

...pure pangxiejiao!  This represents an excellent opportunity to come to know the character of this strange additive that is usually only present in small amounts.  The leaves of this life-form are yellow and green, with a "wrinkled" level of detail that you might be able to discern from the photographs.

The scent of the dry leaves is particularly unique.  I have encountered in only one location before today: the giraffe enclosure of the zoo.  The leaves have that blend of hairy, rich, and definitely animal scents that occur only in giraffe enclosures.

The soup, as you can see below, is a watery yellow-green.  I was wondering if this might make it rather tasteless, but the character is quite obviously not at all weak: it is creamy, thick, quite sweet, and tastes remarkably close to Jingmaishan's lanxiang [orchid scent], perhaps because of its growth in close proximity (well, crawling up the bark of the tree).  It is tangy, cooling at the back of the throat, and enduring in a way that few teas can achieve.  Quite surprising is its overall effect, and really rather nice, it has to be said.

You may not have received any pangxiejiao in your Christmas stocking this year, but I do recommend trying some should the opportunity arise.  My opinion of pangxieojiao has entirely changed from "novelty" to "pleasant addition".  Heaven knows how it ages, but the immediate character is rather fascinating.

25 December, 2013

His Second Winter

his second winter
tracking the descent
of every snowflake

23 December, 2013

The Joy of Six

Six Famous Tea Mountains, or "6FTM" to its friends: I have a big store of cakes from this factory, many from 2003, and most provided thanks to the generous auspices of Keng, teachum from Singapore.  6FTM are not makers of fancy cakes, but, back in the early 2000s, they were making cakes of such simple potency that they have aged rather well.

The 2003 6FTM Jingmai Pangxiejiao looks like a novelty cake (it is called "crab's feet"), but tastes really rather good.  A recent session revealed that the crab's feet (a vine) impart a sharp and noticeable bitterness that is both complementary to the otherwise fuzzy-warmth of Jingmaishan, and which I somehow missed the first time around.  (Notes have been added to the original article.)

Then, we have the...

2003 6FTM "Youle Gucha" which is much more canonical.  That is, it's strong and warm, and has aged in Singapore's heat quite nicely.  (More notes added to the original article.)

We also have the 6FTM known only as "Yunnan Qizi Bingcha" which is a little like seeing wine labelled as simply "red wine".

This is a fun cake, and one with which I wished to spend a little more time, after the whistle-stop introduction some years back.  The aroma, revealed on opening the wrapper, is strong sweetness of the dark 'Banna variety.

This is not a "grand" tea, even by 6FTM standards, in that it has not been attributed to any particular region.  This is confirmed by the fragmented, small leaves, which have been mixed with stems, huangpian [yellow flakes], and all sorts of grades.  I like to call this kind of mix "rugged" or "robust", in the sense that it is something akin to a shaggy dog.  Messy, but endearing.

The scent in the wenxiangbei starts quietly, and I wonder if it is a tired, old cake.  The soup promptly slaps me "upside the heed" [sic], and we are rapidly disabused of all notions that this tea will come quietly.  It is potent, sharp, heavy, sweet, and extremely violent.  Naturally, this makes it rather appealing.

The fact that this tea still seems to be spoiling for a fight, even after a decade of aging, testifies to the raw power that early 6FTM cakes can contain.  This cake has since gained some "blackness", in the general way of aged, generic 'Banna leaves, and which is rather satisfying.  While it cannot be said to have a huigan per se, it has something of a proto-huigan.  That is, there is a long, dense sweetness that sits in the throat - it just doesn't turn into the classical huigan.

I found this tea to be strong, and was (surprisingly) possible to overbrew, which is unusual for decade-old tea from Singapore, where the heat rapidly takes the edge off a tea.  Later infusions developed the floral characteristics of "black" 'Banna tea, which was, again, a pleasant surprise for what I assume to be very mainstream pu'ercha.  

Back then, even the "humble" leaves packed a serious punch.  I like it a lot, and am pleased to observe that aging will probably only improve it further, given its innate violence and comprehensive density.

What fun!


The 2003 6FTM Gelanghe (with detailed notes added to the article) is probably the best of the lot, to my mind. It has the qualities of a bigger tea, and yet is priced at sociable 6FTM levels. While I cannot say that I really understand "Gelanghe" [approx. ger-laang-her] as a regional characteristic, this cake is certainly doing well after its first decade, with the strength to go on to better things.

18 December, 2013

Osaka IV

you don't need
to bow to us all,
bus driver

16 December, 2013

The Dao of Big Sessions

Some teas are built for big sessions: the kind of sessions in which you can really get entrenched, and dug in for the long haul.  These are the type of sessions where the tea-table becomes a fortification, ready to withstand all intruders.  This article concerns two teas which occupy diametrically opposed ends of the gamut of "big session" teas.

The first occupies a spot in my "long session" repertoire because it is so accessible, and so undemanding, while being quite decent.  The key aspect of relevance is that it soldiers on without breaking apart.  It is the 2012 Dehong "Yesheng Ziya" [wild purple-sprout], which is made by Yunnan Sourcing and is one of his oldest continuous recipes.  Back when Scott used to sell mainstream cakes (Dayi, etc.) as his main business, the purple-leaf Dehong was one of perhaps two or three teas that he produced himself.

Dehong is a "prefecture" (i.e., diqu or zizhizhou) that is a long way away from anywhere, even by the standards of Yunnan.  My mental map has Simao north of Xishuangbanna, and then Lincang north of Simao.  Tea becomes more rare as we go north to Lincang.  Beyond Lincang lies Baoshan.  Just to the west of Baoshan, we eventually reach Dehong.  It is miles away from everywhere.

The tea has a base of something that I call "granary sweetness", as in the sweetness of grain, which it has in common with teas from Lincang.  I have little experience of Baoshan teas, which lie between Dehong and Lincang, but suspect that the granary sweetness might be common to all three.  This gives the "ziya" purpleness a little extra complexity, and it is this husky, "dry" base that keeps things interesting.  Also, the tea is quite strong - unlike many "purple" teas, this is very easy to overbrew, which is to its credit: it has some real trousers.

The "Dehong Yesheng" tea has appeared previously on this humble site in the guise of a 2012 xiaobing made by Scott for Canton Tea.  Herein lies the difficulty, because the cake sells for approximately half the cost at Yunnan Sourcing as it does at Canton Tea.  The two companies have fairly dissimilar customers, and so this may work out well for everyone.  Irrespective of the merchant from which it comes, this tea is strong, quite interesting, and, most importantly for a big session, it lasts forever.  I managed to get a lot of writing done before this tea ran out of steam. 

At the other end of the gamut*, we have the 2003 Chenguanghetang "Yiwu Zhengshan Shipin". 

*If gamuts have ends - they are traditionally rather ovoid shapes, if we are considering printing gamuts.

Mr. Chen is a tea merchant who looks precisely like my mental image of the professional aggressive tea-salesman.  His teas are solid, nonetheless, and, while overpriced, can often be really quite good.  Certainly, that is the case with this 2003 cake.  Thanks to TA for this particular sample.

Chen's teas are often produced in the "Taiwanese" style, which means chopped to high heaven.  Thankfully, this one is more "fragmented" than "chopped", and this benefits the tea.  It is an autumnal cake, and therefore doesn't have the luxury of having excess strength to see it through its aging.  Were one to chop an autumnal cake, I suspect that the results would be sub-optimal, in that whatever energy it had would be aged away more rapidly due to the chopping (and therefore exposure of the leaf interior to oxidation / fermentation).

As with many autumnal teas that have some age, it is almost impossible to overbrew this tea.  I ended up with Zidu [purple-belly, my teapot] ab-so-lutely crammed with leaves, and it still stayed drinkable.  Indeed, one has to increase the quantity of leaves used with this tea so that it retains the desired strength.  The result is smooth, heavy, and sweet: the sweetness is loooong.  It is long in its sweetness.  While not particularly complex, it is as dense as the bowels of a star, and brews forever.  This may be a function of the large quantity of leaf used, but the result is a long, long session.

Compared with the husky, dry, simple-but-constant sweetness of the Dehong tea, this Yiwushan tea is extremely orthodox.  It tastes exactly as one would expect from a good producer when making teas from a canonical region of 'Banna.  I have no doubt that it is fairly expensive, and I long since gave up buying "CGHT" cakes, but the session with this sample was extraordinary in its duration.  I had to refill the ink in my pen twice, such was the time at the table.  Sometimes, you need a tea like this to see you through.

13 December, 2013

Yiwushan Clan

Today's article covers a week in the world of Yiwushan, in which I've been focussing on getting to know some of the various villages, as my almost-depleted bag of samples allows.  The motivating tea for this excursion was a sample generously provided by Prof. GV, who is now departed for an old British trading colony attached to the south of China.  I suspect that his access to good tea has improved accordingly.

This is, as far as I can make out, "2006 Eight Pcs", or that could be "2006 Eight Pos".  I suspect the former.  Eight pieces?  Pieces-of-eight, pirate style?  If the good professor happens to be reading, perhaps he might be able to shed some light on this.

Funnily enough, I brewed this tea as a remedy for washing away the sins of a pesticide-laden cake in the previous session.  The leaves have a dense and sweet aroma of good ol' Yiwushan that promises tongue redemption.

PIECES-OF-EIGHT turns out to be a spicy-sweet Yiwu with some warmth and decency in the straightforward style typical of the region.  It has some backbone that keeps it going; even though I crammed a large quantity of leaves into the pot, I am rewarded with stability and sweetness, without scaling any heights of grandeur.  It definitely put me in the mood for more Yiwushan tea, however, and that formed the focus of my sessions over the few days following.

Scraping the bottom of my sample bag for residue, I came across a packet of tea kindly provided by Eugene of Tea Urchin, when the on-line shop opened some time ago.  It looks as if Eugene has gone on to good things; the samples that I tried previously had the disadvantage of all being autumnal, and were consequently a little underwhelming.

Intriguingly, this tea is sold as being "Wangong" tea, although the product description reveals it is Dingjiazhai.  This is sort-of, kind-of the eastern Yiwushan region, and often classified as "Mansashan".  Wangong is rather sexy, as far as tea locations go, Dingjiazhai is about as sexy as old corduroy.  Don't get me wrong, I love me my corduroy.

This is an autumnal cake from "Xinshenglihao", a brand so minor that it does not appear in the mighty BABELCARP, long may she reign over us.  I found the Xinshenglihao "Xikong" to be good, but a bit simple compared with the competition from Yunnan Sourcing.

What you get for your $49/200g here, which is quite a lot for an autumnal cake, is some dark, sweet soup with a cooling penetration.  It is, unsurprisingly, warm and rounded in the autumnal "guhua" style, without the aggression of springtime tea - this could be acceptable if you're looking for a muted drink-it-now cake, but will prove a hinderance to aging.  There is little complexity but there is, at least, comfort.  There is just an edge of kuwei [good bitterness], dimmed.  By the fourth infusion, this cake has collapsed into mediocre Dingjiazhai territory.

Days later, I went into a session with the 2012 "Early Yiwu" cake from Yunnan Sourcing ready to be underwhelmed.

Scott has demonstrated, over the course of the years, that he knows how to pick good cakes.  I am always wary of "early season" cakes, however, because the emphasis is on rushing to market, and this can sometimes correspond to the sacrificing of quality.  Scott has made this using leaves from Yibi and Luoshuidong, where I can honestly say that I don't think I've ever had a good pu'ercha cake from Luoshuidong.  Hence the feeling of impending doom.

You have to go into pu'ercha with an open mind.  The first few infusions of this tea were so watery that I was ready to confirm my schlerotic prejudice almost immediately.  Thankfully, I soldiered on.

It turns out that this tea really needs four infusions to reach maximum speed.  This is quite unusual in young tea, which is usually deceptively pleasant in the first two infusions, and which may then easily collapse after the third.  If you're lucky, the tea will stay pleasant.  This cake, however, bucked the trend, and actually got better during those first four infusions, until it peaked and remained stable.  This is a characteristic shared by some of my favourite teas, and hints at the fact that the leaves might actually have quite a lot of density, in some sense, that needs some coaxing to turn into strong soup.

Eventually, the soup turns a thick yellow.  By this time, the straightforward, almost empty, Yiwushan sweetness has swollen into something thick and proper.  It has a heavy solidity that I appreciate, and the sweetness continues out until the ninth or tenth infusion.  So, in this case, as so frequently occurs, my prior assumptions turned out to be false, and I should learn to give the tea its time in the sun.  At $24/250g, it is quite nicely priced, too.

This was an article about Yiwushan, which I have totally misrepresented, because I want to finish with a tale of the 2010 Longfeng "Phoenix", which actually comes from Jieliang (near Laoman'e), in the Bulangshan region.

There was some soap-opea drama associated with the Longfeng brand, involving a cross-over with Yunnan Sourcing, as far as I recall, and which I hope to ignore as my tolerance for drama is extremely limited.

Much better to consider, the tea leaves (pictured below) are fragmented, and a little dark, but have the heavy scent of good sweetness.

This tea, as with the "Early Yiwu" cake described above, starts slow and watery.  However, by the third infusion, it delivers a razor-sharp edge of sheer metallic kuwei that is unmistakeably "Bulangshan".  I love it.  The sensations in the mouth are simultaenously cold, which reinforces the "cold steel" feeling of this cake.

The core of sweetness develops as the perfect foil to the cold-steel kuwei.  "This pure antisocial hatred is rather refreshing, and I am happy to brew it again and again."

I'm sure that this cake isn't available any more, but I loved its deadly ruthlessness.  Fine stuff, and a great way to end a week that was otherwise spent pottering around in the sweet comfort of Yiwushan.

11 December, 2013

Osaka III

just one cherry tree
remains at the defence
of Sakuramon

-Sakuramon, Osaka-jo

09 December, 2013

A Little Learning Goes a Long Way

It may sound a bit hokey, but I love learning.  It is one of the reasons that I am in the academic business.  Turning up to work and being paid to learn something (and, of late, even being given the freedom to choose what to learn) is a great blessing.  I've noticed lately that I am treating tea the same way.  

When, to take an example, I try some 2012 samples from Yunnan Sourcing, I find myself keenly trying to learn about tea.  Over and over again, tea after tea, year after year.  Now, I am not a fast learner.  This is a slow old process, and progress is of the "two steps forward, one step back" variety.  However, it is a huge amount of fun.  So, when I have previously tried both the 2011 and 2013 versions of Scott's Nanpozhai (which were both excellent), trying the 2012 described below is another opportunity to learn.  In this case, I hope to learn what it is that makes Nanpozhai tick.

The village of Nanpo is right next to Bingdao ("Ice Island"!) in the Mengku region of Shuangjiang ["double-river"] county of Lincang diqu.  Bingdao itself is the subject of Scott's "Mushucha" [mother-tree tea] cakes, and is famous for its icy chill - we might reasonably expect Nanpozhai leaves to be similar.

That they are related is clear; that they actually have rather different nuances becomes obvious in subtle ways, in the aroma and tasting cups.  Learning those nuances, or attempting to learn those nuances, is hugely enjoyable.

This is a fantastic little tea.  It is absolutely gripping from beginning to end, and tells a complex tale.  I thoroughly recommend you check out a sample, as Nanpozhai tea is seldom attributed.  It's not even in the ever-mighty Babelcarp.

Tangent: I use Babelcarp at least once per day.  It is, according to the installation of Google Chrome on my ipad, in the top-five sites that I visit.  Lew Perin has given the world much via Babelcarp, and his continued updates are one of the silent treasures of the tea world.  Thank you, Lew.

Why is this tea so gripping?  It is fresh, grassy, and thick with pollen - and then it is cooling and Bingdao-chilled - and then it is sweet Mengku grain - and then, finally, there is a punchy little kuwei [good bitterness].  It soldiers on a long time, and, even after ten infusions, it remains sweet and quite reasonable.  Its internal free energy (heh) is significant.  I don't know how or if it will age, but it is a solid and attention-retaining tea right now.

My spreadsheet tells me I have neither the 2011, this 2012, nor the 2013, and I should do something to remedy the situation by picking at least one cake.  It's not inexpensive ($70something / 400g), but it's a decent price for something so charming.

The other half of the learning curve described in this article is based around the 2012 Manzhuan, also from Yunnan Sourcing.

I previously compared the 2009 and 2010 versions of this cake, although both were autumnal.  While I don't seem to have notes for any 2011 version, this 2012 incarnation is, thankfully, springtime tea.  I don't find myself drinking much in the way of autumnal tea, by choice.  It can be nice - but, with finite time, why not spend the time maximising your probability of success, and therefore drink springtime tea?

Manzhuanshan describes a large area to the west of the Yiwushan area, rather like Yibangshan.  You don't typically hear of Manzhuanshan and Yiwushan being conjoined, but Scott describes this cake as being "classic Yiwu taste".

To me, it doesn't seem immediately similar to Yiwu character: this Manzhuan cake opens with a first infusion that is sweet and cheerful, but doesn't have the Yiwushan straw-like complexity that many of us seem to enjoy.  What it does have is a strong, lasting buttery sweetness, which has presumably been imparted by the wok.  Bearing in mind this tea is now a year old, that flavour is therefore not transient, like many processing-imparted characteristics (smokiness, etc.) that one sometimes find in young cakes.  The thick body is immediately enjoyable.

First infusions are notoriously deceptive, however.  From the second through to eighth infusions, a citric, spiced-green darkness begins to creep in.  There is not much in the way of kuwei, and the buttery roasted sweetness of the first infusion is revealed as being a roasted, quite powdery, wok-flavour in the base of the tea.  The processing has been quite strong with this one, and, with the overall lack of kuwei, can predominate.

Brewed carefully, the sweetness can be made to last, but I was a little concerned for its aging potential, due to its lightness, and the omnipresent roast.  Scott has been very fair with the prices: while the 2009 and 2010 Manzhuan cakes were almost exactly the same price at the time (approx. $53/357g), this 2012 cake, being sold two years later, is just $33/357g equivalent.  That is quite inexpensive, given modern pricing. (Scott only sells a Walongzhai cake for 2013, which is near Manzhuan, and where the cake is a blistering $127/357 equivalent).

So, then, two good cakes, and two good opportunities to learn.  I feel as if I've learned something of the Nanpozhai take on Bingdao iciness, and something of the Manzhuanshan citric strength in its relation to sweet Yiwushan.  One of the great benefits of learning is being proven wrong, however, and I look forward to my own taste-buds contradicting my conclusions in later sessions...

06 December, 2013

Mutual Inverses

Blending a tea session, in the sense of stitching together consecutive teas that work together, can be a fine art.  For me, it is mostly just a product of blind luck.  This morning, I found myself awake before dawn, and randomly happened across a pair of teas that, while not so much complementing one another, are precise mutual inverses.

It is not even easy to split the teas into "yin" vs. "yang", or "feminine" vs. "masculine", because they are both, well... perhaps it is better, in the words of A.A. Milne, to start at the start and end at the end.

The first tea is, as pictured above, the 2013 "Few Single Trees" maocha from Essence of Tea.  This is made from a small number of "old trees" in the Bangweishan area (in Lancang county of Simao diqu, not far from Jingmaishan) and the Bulangshan area of Menghai county in 'Banna diqu.  Mr. Essence made a 2012 "Bangwei 33" cake that I enjoyed to such a degree that I felt the need to sketch.

The maocha is tippy, and fragmented to the degree that it easily enters the teapot without breakage.  There is very little scent to the leaves.  The colour of the soup is thin, but recognisably Simao-brown; the scent in the wenxiangbei [aroma cup] is so quiet that pruning a dead leaf from a nearby arrangement of geranium plants produces a scent that entirely dominates that of the tea.

It is big and smooth, but absolutely devoid of all flavour, excepting the low roast of the wok.  Then, crashing through in the finish, is the obvious contribution from the Bulangshan component: the brassy kuwei [good bitterness], possibly added in recognition of the fact that the Bangweishan component needed a little kick to perk it up.  After the kuwei comes a warming, comforting yunxiang [after-scent] of buttery wok.

The whole thing is "very much Mr. Essence's cup of tea": it is delicate, elegant, clean, and has a brightening feeling to it.  It is a strange drink.  I don't doubt that I will attract comments such as "Oh, newbies are always interested only in flavour", but a tea that is entirely invisible is hard to love, no matter how gently comforting the "chaqi" might be.

As promised, the 1999 Yiwushan maocha from Pu-erh.sk is the complete inverse.

Here, the maocha is ready to go: it has the punchy mineral sweetness of humid storage, which immediately sets my mouth watering and stomach rumbling.

The soup is solid, immediately dense in colour, and this tea piles its characteristics of smooth vanilla and long sweetness into the first infusion.  The taste of humid redness has aged into a rounded state that makes this tea very easy to love.  It is good, old-fashioned Yiwushan tea of the kind that has been around the block a few times.

It is also, because of its aging in the maocha state, rather devoid of energy, to my taste.  It is all flavour, but little in the way of huigan and real zest, as if the combined forces of humid heat and loose (i.e., zero) compression have sought to give it a beating.

These teas, then, are precisely opposite.  It is hard to love each entirely, because each has desirable characteristics - body, duration, and energy for the 2013 Bangweishan and sweet pu'ercha flavour and scent in the 1999 Yiwushan.

Just for the record, the former sells for the equivalent of $276/357g (ahem), while the latter appears to be unavailable at the time of writing.  Thanks to both Mr. Essence and Peter Pu-erh.sk for the generous samples.