09 June, 2014

Orchids It Ain't

This is the first of a pair of fascinating samples kindly provided by Peter of Pu-erh.sk.  The two neifei below show Baohexiang, a new pu'ercha brand from Li Wenhua who is (you guessed it) an ex-factory director at Dayi.  The Dayi diaspora is huge.  They must have trouble retaining their senior staff - it seems everyone is off to found their own labels.

Peter writes that the first of these two teas is the Yiwu Qiulan [Yiwu Orchid], and that it has been stored in Taipei.  From the name, we are immediately expecting a namby-pampy floral pu'ercha.  Let's see what happen to our oestrogen levels throughout the duration of this session...

The cake, as you will probably have surmised for yourself, looks gud.  Plenty gud, in fact.  It has loose compression, a good (but not overwhelming) number of tips, and, best of all, a ton of strong and large basis leaves.  My fears about oestrogen levels are beginning to abate.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, it does generate a heavy and sweet lengxiang [cooling scent] in the aroma cup.  The soup is clean and sweet, though "pure" and gentle.  It has the warm, rounded body of autumnal tea.  You may be able to imagine my intonation on those words: autumnal tea.

Adding some leaves is an obligatory step, lest I fear for my manhood.  With an increment in the quantity, the soup is encouraged to produce kuwei [good bitterness], which is a necessary component for this Yiwushan tea.  (Note that the sample packet, at the top, may be misleading in this instance as it states "Yiwu-Bulang recipe A".)

The tea does well with what it has: there is honest, straightforward sweetness, and the bitter-straw kuwei of dryish storage.  It resounds pleasantly in the mouth, although it is not "throaty".  I am afraid that this, while being decently-made pu'ercha, is a little too gentle for my barbaric Anglo-Saxon tastes.  I can imagine my ancestors howling in rage to see their descendant messing around with such a genteel tea.  I can only apologise to them, and endeavour to slake their collective thirst for brutal concoctions in subsequent sessions.

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