Tea Encounter has pressed a Chawangshu Xiaoshu before, this 2020 Tea Encounter Chawangshu, and I thought it was of decent value especially considering it still demonstrated some Chawangshu characteristics typical of the growing area. This 2022 Tea Encounter Chawangshu Xiaoshu goes for $115.00 for 200g cake or $0.58/g- I kindly got a free sample for review.
Dry leaves are of especially pungent cooling spice with edges of barnyard and sweetness underneath.
First infusion has a pungent barnyard taste with long coolness in the mouth. There is a strong barnyard and rainforest taste with a cooling pungent arc. Some melon sweetness emerges underneath and the tastes fades to a sugar finish with accompanying barnyard and cool pungent. The mouthfeeling is a soft chalkiness and the throat feeling opens to the mid throat.
The second infusion is left to cool and gives off a very foresty gamey pungent forest. Strong forest pungent gamey taste with a bit of melon fruity sweetness that emerges mid profile and then a returning sugar edge. Nice chalky full mouthfeeling.
The third infusion is left to cool and has a nice balance of pungent gamey foresty onset with evolving melon creamy bready sugary sweetness. There is a thick layering of taste. The foresty gamey pungent and bready almost woody sweetness lingers in the mouth. Mild qi felt in the jaw and face.
The fourth infusion has a slight bitter pungent forest gamey onset with an emerging banana, peach, pear like fruity sweetness. The mothfeeling is a bit chalky and even gripping now with a touch of faint bitter-astringency. There is a subtle bitter forest sweetness that lingers. The taste is pretty dense and layered here.
The fifth infusion has a dense layering of forest, gamey, melon, sugar, potato tastes. The pungent coolness in long and notable, so is the forest-gamey taste. The sweetness sort of emerges from under these tastes with first melon taste, then almost a broader fruity taste then potato, then sugary edges but all layered into each other. Dense mixture of tastes.
The sixth infusion is left to cool and gives off a forest and sweet melon pungent taste. There is a mild bitter-astringency that really makes the sweet taste pop in this infusion. The taste is a melon, pear sugar potato foresty taste. Nice faint gripping mouthfeeling with a deeper throat stimulation now.
7th has a strong pungent coolness with a foresty gamey taste and much more oily texture. There is an oily melon bready potato sweetness that emerges from the oily textures. Nice foresty gamey taste across the profile with some sugary edges. Some arm tingling and subtle face sensations. Mild relaxing Qi in the mind.
8th has a bitter sweet melon onset with lesser gamey forest tastes. The texture is a bit oilier now but a real layered taste with more bitter-sweet-pungent tastes now. Some limb tingles and mind relaxing. Mild Qi sensations in the mind with a relaxed focused feeling.
9th has a bitter astringent gamey forest with some sweetness coming from underneath in the form of potato and melon and woody. The pungent coolness is the main feature of this puerh at this age. Its really strong and long. Nice focused calm feeling. Some mild limb tingles.
10th has a bitter sweet onset with a pop of juicy melon-woody-potato taste. Bitterness almost has edges of coco here with a stronger grabbing mouthfeeling and long coolness that goes deep into the throat. A mild focusing Qi.
I get back to these leaves the next day…
11th has a banana foresty woody bland onset. There is a lingering bland woody sweetness and a touch of bitterness.
12th has a bitter sweet onset with woody forest and lesser pear sweetness. The bitterness is long in the mouth. It is paired with a thin gripping mouthfeeling. I can feel it in my empty stomach this early in the morning.
13th has a woody bitter onset with a coolness that is long and deep but not as strong as earlier. Mainly just bitter and pungent coolness with some gamey forest and sweetness that is more subtle. The finish is more barnyard gamey with bitterness. Some leg tingling. Mild focusing Qi.
14th has a bitter sweet onset with a woody body over a gripping drier mouthfeeling now. There are just edges of sweetness underneath. Mainly a bitter woody profile now with mild Qi relaxation with a bit of Heart beats and arm tingling.
The mug steeping… has a gamey pungent coolness to it with a significant bitter-sweet taste. Lots of pungent gamey barnyard and long deep pungent cooling. The mouthfeeling is puckering and a bit dry. There is a touch of oily texture. Not too much sweetness left in here.
Overall, I liked this one for its price. A pretty layered experience that has some Chawangshu area charm. I like the thick flavor layers, it’s a tasty puerh. The Qi is the weak point of this tea being from Young tree leaves but the forest-gamey and especially long pungent taste is really solid and enjoyable and really brings you into the forested area of Yiwu and boarder areas there. Not sure if this is drink now or for aging… I’d probably won’t be able to resist drinking it now... hahahah…