Wednesday, September 20, 2023

2023 Tea Encounter Douyishu: Ascension


This was the non Gushu tea that I was most excited about from the 2023 free sample package from Tea Encounter.  This 2023 Tea Encounter Douyishu goes for $110.00 for 200g or $0.55/g.  It was also the first non-Gushu from these offerings that I had sampled.  To me it offers both a Gushu-like experience and a BoHeTang-like experience.  Great value and interesting experience.  I’m not sure I have ever really tried a puerh like this before.

Dry leaves smell of a forestry almost gamey pungent.

First infusion has a creamy watery icing sugar taste with faint soft fluffy mouthfeel.

Second infusion has a watery creamy sugar taste with some forestry taste in there for depth.  A relaxing and mild spacy floating head sensation takes hold.  Long faint sugar taste with pure cooling mouth.  Soft fluffy mouthfeel. 

Third infusion has a watery woody almost almond taste with a faint lingering cooling.  Mild spacy qi feeling with some head floating extending bodyfeeling.  Some chest beats as well as strong ascending feeling.

Fourth infusion has a woody almost almond shell taste.  There is some icing sugar sweetness that lingers on the breath with a pure cool extension.  Strong Qi feeling in the mind with strong spaciness and chest beats with floating head feeling.

Fifth infusion is woody pure clean taste with long icing sugar taste with faint hand to grasp melon.  Strong chest beats build up in body with spacy feeling and floating body sensations.  Soft fluffy mouthfeeling.  Long fine cooling breath.

Sixth infusion has a woody onset with creamy icing sugar long fine cooling aftertaste.  Qi is quite strong- I like it.  

The seventh I overnight steep the leaves and it has a melon woody sugar taste that pops in the teeth.  This woody sugar long taste is nice BaoHeTang character and it is definitely found throughout this session.  Overall, this had most of the things I would expect in BaoHeTang.  Woody clear profile with long sugar like lingering taste and strong spacy qi with floating bodyfeeling- I like this one!


2023 Tea Encounter Huazhuliangzi: Slow Battery Charge

 This was included in a box of free samples from review from Tea Encounter.  This 2023 Tea Encounter HuaZhuLiangZi Gushu goes for $120.00 for 200g cake or $0.60.  I don’t have too much experience with HuaZhuLiangZi area but what I have tried I really enjoyed.  I was excited to see Alex’s (Puerh Blog) notes on this on posted on his blog ang look forward to reading his notes on these other Gushus as well.  This was my least favourite of the Tea Encounter 2023 Gushus but I still got much enjoyment out of it.  I especially enjoyed its deep slow build battery charge Qi… haha.

Dry leaves has a sweet floral with stronger forest piercing odour.

First infusion has a sweet subtle candy grassy sweetness with a lubricating oily mouthfeel.

Second infusion is forestry creamy icing sugar sweet with faint cooling pungent breath.  Soft Qi feeling with enhanced senses. Cooled down it has a forestry taste.

Third infusion has a forestry fresh taste with edges of icing sugar sweetness.  There is a faint cooling pungency on the breath.  Soft qi feeling. 

The fourth infusion has a woody Forest taste with a slight chalky sort of sandy mouthfeel.  There is a nice cooling pungency finish.  The forestry almost woody taste stretches from start to finish.

The fifth infusion has a woody forest taste throughout.  The mouthfeel is a substantial chalky feeeling with a faint floaral creamy sweet finish on the cool breath.  Soft qi feeling with effortless calm energy boost.

The sixth in fusion has a woody Forest taste throughout with some fainter sweet floral.  Qi slowly builds and has a deeper energy now like a slow battery charge.

Seventh is put into a long overnight thermos steeping and is a nice deep forestry with a long lingering cool pungent floral.  Some salivating mouthfeel.  Some faint mild chalky pucker on the roof of the mouth.


Tuesday, September 19, 2023

2023 Tea Encounter Yishanmo GuShu: Happy and Light

 This was a part of the free samples that Tiago sent me.  This 2023 Tea Encounter Yi Shan Mo Gushu goes for $83.00 for 200g cake or $0.42/g.  It is an enjoyable YiShanMo area puerh for me.  It was likely the lightest and in some ways has the widest flavour profile of the 2023 Tea Encounter Gushus.  A lot of the flavours are hard to grasp at and during the long Thermos steeping at the end of the session, I was left pulled into the light deep flavours… so fun!

Dry leaves have a woody forestry almost pungent almost gamey root vegetables odour.

First infusion is a watery faint forest woody taste almost floral with a wet mouthfeel.

Second infusion is left to cool and has a woody Forest slight creamy not really floral taste.  Faint creamy finish in a wet slight lubricating mouthfeel.  Peaceful Qi feeling.

Third infusion has a woody Forest bland taste which is thickened by the wet lubricating mouthfeel which you can see in the picture with lasting bubbles.  YiShanMo is all about the lubricating mouthfeel which this one has.  Woody forest tastes almost but not really mushroom with no bitter astringency.  Nice peaceful qi with a bit of body abdominal warming qi.

Fourth infusion has a woody almost melon taste with a lubricating wet mouthfeeling and peaceful Qi.  Very comfortable in the body and mind with some abdominal warming bodyfeeling.  Faint sweet melon finish. No astringency or bitter.

Fifth is a woody Forest pure watery taste. Watery lubricant with peaceful feeling. Warming abdomen.  

Sixth infusion has a woody almost dry grass/ hay straw taste with an almost melon faintly sweet finish.  Peaceful mind.

Longer seventh steeping pull out some cereal grains tastes and other interesting hard to grasp forest tastes.

The eighth infusion I put the wet leaves into a thermos and overnight steep the leaves and it is quite melon creamy sweet with a fresh Forest taste and layered chalky melon vibrant sweetness with pops of creamy sweet melon tastes.  Happy feelings.


2023 Tea Encounter Yaoding Gushu: Pure Tasting Chesty Comforts

This was the second tea I tried from Tiago’s package of free teas for review.  This 2023 TE Yaoding Gushu goes for $127.00 for 200g or $0.64/g.  I actually blind sampled it deliberately not looking at the label.  It turned out to be probably the best freshest Ding Jia Zhai area Yiwu I’ve tried- an area that I’m usually not very satisfied with.  It also was my second favourite of the 2023 Tea Encounter Gushus…

Dry leaves smell quite sweet with a creamy sweet Forest odour.  It reminded me of Yiwu instantly.

First infusion has a watery smooth creamy taste with subtle roasted vegital notes and mild lubricating mouthfeel.  Sublime gentle feeling.  Mainly sweet watery roasty.

Second infusion has a mainly sweet watery creamy taste very clear and pure tasting radiant Heart feeling. Happy Qi.  The cooled down cup is really smooth and pure very subtle grass and roast but mainly just creamy sweet purest taste.  Mansa area? No bitterness or astringency at all. Watery mouthfeel.

Third has a smooth creamy onset with lingering creamy sweet taste not really vegetal but almost roasted taste.  Glowing chest feeling.  Pure clear.

Fourth is cooled down first and is a creamy grassy sweet pure watery subtle vegital. Mild Happy vibes.  Watery mouthfeel no astringency or bitter.

Fifth infusion has a watery subtle roasted vegital taste with a soft sweetness benieth.  Slight edges of bitter astringency but mild.  Now it is mainly roasted vegital tasting like a roasted Korean or Chinese green tea. Warm chesty comforts and mild happy expansive feeling.

Sixth is mainly water subtle vegital sweetness.  Mind happy. Very very faint bitter astringency.

Seventh I put the leaves into an overnight thermos and it delivers a melon creamy sweet forest taste with some arm floating body qi.  Not much bitter astringency but some pucker.  Happy awareness feeling.


Sunday, September 17, 2023

2023 Tea Encounter Pasha Gushu: Complex Mind Qi

 This was in a free package of samples for review from good ol’ Tiago of Tea Encounter.  This 2023 TE Pasha Gushu goes for $115.00 for 200g cake or $0.58/g.

Dry leaves are very green with a piercing cooling pungent odour.

First infusion has a mild bitter pungent vegetal taste.  There is a low lingering cooling with a faint sweetness lingering on the breath.

Second has a smooth watery bitter vegital onset slight forestry bitter taste but faint florals emerging as well.  Chest beats and expansion feeling.  Nice sticky chalky reasonably full mouthfeeling with sensory expansive feeling.  I hear distant things clearly and my mind is active, focused, searching peacefully. Simultaneously relaxing and active qi. Spacey head, tingling elbows. Complex qi.

Third infusion has a complex vegetal Forest taste with bitterness that bites upfront.  There is a long floral taste and bitterness
Cooled infusion has a floral deep bitter cool pungency to it. Strong mind qi.

Fourth infusion has a watery forest vegital taste.  With a longer expanding floral note and bitter taste with sticky chalky mouthfeel.  Chest beats and expanding with mind fixing

6th is left to cool and is a vegital bitter floral onset with a moderate sticky chalky mouthfeel and chest expanding qi.  

7th has a bitter floral vegetal sort of a complex qi feeling with an expanding chest bodyfeeling and mind spacy but fine attention to all sensations.

8th I finished off with a long thermos steeping overnight… the next day it was very floral with sweet cherry underneath mild bitterness not as much as I thought.  Nice forestry cool pungency on the breath.  Nice bitter sweet balance.  Not really astringent.  Nice mind feeling.

This was my favourite of the 2023 Tea Encounter Gushus- powerful, flavour, and complex Qi.  It was also the one I was most excited about trying.  It was also the first I tried.


Duanni, 2023 Fresh Sheng, Trad Stored, Lost Posts,Life


Life is so fun right now!  Very busy and dynamic.  Through periods of change tea is so grounding.  Puerh is always changing but imbibed in times of change it can be so centring.  I haven’t sat down at tea table for a slow evaluative sample since 2022.  No space for that … but my tea drinking is evolving.  I do remember what sample it was… 

The last sit down slow evaluative session was with a free sample from Paolo of from a storage option that I really enjoy- thanks again Paolo for the treat.  It was a 2004 jia he tang tong chang hao I think it was mainly billed as being something close to a ChenYuan Hao Yiwu.  I really enjoyed it and think it’s probably 1/2 as good as the ChenYuan Hao - had some good Yiwu characteristics but not as strong.  I lost these tasting notes and a handful of Older Yang Qing Hao sample notes, I think, which included their most expensive offering 18 trees. Won’t probably get another crack at this one.  I remember the as expected being a very ethereal type of experience with some limbs bodyfeeling and being really soft.  I also sampled the 2006 Snow buds which was not that memorable for me.  The 2004 Dingji which blows minds.  I hate loose notes to technology ineptitude but it has happened more than a few times in the blogs long life.  Also lots some Trad storage notes- darn!

Anyways… At work, I have moved again and have not yet set up proper gongfu there.  I’m usually drinking larger pots stretched through the week stationed on the kitchen countertop in the centre of my busy home.  Yeah tea is still pretty central to my life and sometimes in the few minutes here and there at that tea table I see my life in complete clarity circling around my tea table.  Like the planets orbiting the sun.  Or other times I am drinking thermos sessions at work, outside or on the go.  It’s not my preference but I adapt.

This past year I have mainly consumed lots of Trad storage puerh and Semiaged Gushu - the ChenYuan Hao and YangQing Hao.  I should post on those things.

I would like to give Tiago a big warm thank you for pulling me out of my long streak of no posts.  He sent me his whole 2023 Tea Encounter line up!  I just finished tasting all the Gushus. Brewing was unconventional but I enjoyed it.  I used a thermos to flash steep the leaves before pouring them into a large ceramic cup created by a local Daegu ceramic artist that I was gifted around 15 yrs ago. I will post in the next days here about these.

The other thing that got me posting again was a local find of this unused giant Duanni yixing pot pictured above.  Only one of four functioning Yixings that I own now.  Got it for 39$.  Never been used but the clay is really nice the motif of a dragon and Phoenix is outrageous and got my kids very excited.  It must be 600ml if I were to guess with a crushing 20 second plus pour. What a monster!  The size and motif suggest it was probably meant as a wedding gift.  The local Saskatchewan man I purchased it off confirmed it was a wedding gift maybe 20 years ago.  The art I reminds me of something from the 90s/ early 2000s. Rare art style on yixing for sure!

I always heard that Duanni mutes the flavour of puerh.  I was always like why on earth would you want to ever mute puerh?  So I was never too interested in this clay with Hongni always being my go to.

But it’s been fun playing with a new pot- my trend seems to be bigger and bigger anyways.  The idea is for the yellow Duanni clay to take away the harsher elements of the puerh while presumably leaving the better elements more clear to appreciate.  Sounds magical doesn’t it?  People sometimes use Duanni for Traditional Hong Kong Storage puerh and that’s what I’ve been drinking lately.  However, I’m finding it’s better preforming for harsher Sheng puerh or puerh that was once more wet stored than stored in my less that idea Canadian dry storage for decades.  Example that you may have tried is that it really elevates the 2001 Ding Xing to a level of refinement that I have never tried before which it sore of washes out the Sheng puerh like elements and mutes the shu depth of something like the 90s CNNP 8972 Naked Brick.

Anyways, it’s good to know that I’m still alive, loving life, drinking lots of good tea, and most importantly still learning.

Hope you are well.


Sunday, April 2, 2023

2018 BaoHongYinJi Wanggong: spacy Qi Floating Body

 I had an unintended 2 month gap from the other BaoHongYinJi samples including the BaoHongYinJi Wanggong vertical sample set which this sample comes from…

Dry leaf is a very sweet fruity deep forest odour.

First infusion is a fruity deep Forest taste.  There is a deep layered almost dried appricott and deep first sweet taste.  Deep throat feel and mouth watering mouthfeeling.  Qi is strong and spacy even off the first pot!

Second infusion has a layered deeper peachy apricot taste with a chalky full mouthwatering feeling.  Lots of saliva producing with a pop of sour taste before returning in layers of deeper sweetness.  Strong qi spacy with some heart beats. There is a lingering astringency not strong like the 2017.

3rd has an oily dense peachy pear forest deep taste.  There is a silty oily chalky feeling in the mouth.  Nice spacy feeling.  Returning canned peaches and dried apricot taste. 

4th has an ashy Forest woody almost wood bark coco with a thick oily peachy taste that cuts through it all.  Spacy and relaxing qi.  Not much astringency.

5th has a peachy ashy Forest almost bitter wood bark coco.  Relaxing and a bit spaced out.

6th is left to cool and has a woody mild bitter coco oily fruity builds as saliva is produced.  Nice fruity coco oily taste.  Silty chalky feel.

7th is cooled down and is an woody Forest oily developing coco with returning peachy apricot sweet layered deep fruit.

Nice chalky silty feeling.  Relaxing spacy qi with light floating body feels good.

8th has a oily fruity deeper taste with Forest notes faint astringency and bitterness enough to give it depth. Relaxing floating body is very nice.

9th has a silty peachy woody forestry oily taste. Oily almost bitter coco but more oily fruity in the aftertaste which creates nice depth with a bit of astringency and bitterness.

10th is a milky coco woody Forest bitter sweet with much less fruity depth and more coco balance.  

I mug steep out the rest and it has a bitter slight coco Forest taste.  Relaxing Qi feelings.

I sampled the 2017 and 2018 a few months apart but The more powerful astringency of the 2017 and less bodyfeeling makes this 2018 my pick of the two.  The 2018 isn’t as powerful but the significant floating body Qi is one of my favourites.  Just going off power and ability to age the 2017 should be your option.


Saturday, March 18, 2023

2017 BaoHongYinJi Wanggong: Astringent Power & Strongly Disarming Qi!

 This 2017 BaoHongYinJi Wanggong is a part of the

vertical set offered by Liquid Proust.  It’s a strong one…

Dry leaves have a faint bread-like with a creamy fruity candy sweetness.

First infusion has a creamy sweet milky sweetness that turns into an almost fruity quality there is a vibrant sweet tastes left in the mouth that is almost carrot and dirt like and almost cherry-strawberry like. Nice smooth chalky mouthfeeling with a slightly stickiness.  Relaxing focusing peace reaches over me.

Second infusion has a creamy sweet milky woody onset with a bit of a smooth but gripping mouthfeeling.  Has some astringent pucker to it and a spacy mind Qi.

Third infusion is creamy sweet almost milky woody and full feeling in the mouth with an oily mouthfeeling with mild pucker.  The sweetness and saliva return with an oily pop of cherry sweetness that makes the mouth feel sticky. 

Fourth infusion has a sour grape sour cherry onset with significant puckering sour taste.  Sour and astringency are stronger here with cherry fruity sweetness underneath the gripping mouthfeeling and sour tastes.  The astringency can be felt in the stomach a bit.

Fifth infusion sour milky sweet fruity almost carrot woody but creamy and slightly oily.  Nice returning almost coco tastes.  Strong spacy Qi makes me feel tired and unfocused.

6th has a sour punch of fruity taste with astringent and oily feeling and texture.  Strong Qi kicks my ass into some form of uselessness which is never my preferred state at work…totally spaced out and useless and the astringency is felt in my stomach as well here.  Some obvious strength of youth playing out.

7th has a peachy fruity oily viscus taste.  Nice returning sweet fruity taste a bit sour and astringent.  I need to step away from this pot until tomorrow… too strong for me now…

8th is picked up the next day… mild woody bitter fruity taste her with a mainly woody profile after the leaves were left in the pot for a day…  Feel some Qi in the Chest.  Mild spacy focusing.

9th has a candy sweet slight sour pucker sweetness there is a chalky dense mouthfeeling and oily texture with a mouthwatering effect strong chest opening and spacy Qi.  Long sweet cherry fruity finish in the mouth and deep in to the throat.

10th has a bitter woody onset with a lesser cherry sour sweet taste.  The mouthfeeling is a bit puckering but thinning.  Woody slight dry taste left in the mouth.  Chesty Qi with a spacy vibe and heavy shoulders.

11th infusion is left to cool and has a fruity taste with a faint cool pungent finish and creamy finish.  Nice Chest beats, heavy shoulders, and spacy energy.

12th has a bitter tart woody cherry fruity sweet taste over a chalky dry gripping taste.  Nice returning sweetness and puckering tastes a bit astringent.  Spacy energy.

This is the most astringent young and powerful of the BaoHongYinJiWangong vertical.  Lots of astringency, heavy shoulders bodyfeeling, and a Qi that renders me useless.  Long sweet cherry that at times is sour but can get deep into the throat.


Saturday, March 11, 2023

2015 BaoHongYinJi Wanggong: More Mild and Balanced

This was the third sample from this BaoHongYinJi Spring Wanggong vertical Sample set purchased from Liquid Proust.  

Dry leaves smell of sweet creamy slightly woody odours.

First infusion has a creamy woody sweet tastes with a cherry fruity pop of tastes and a fluffy expanding creamy sweet progression that makes the mouth water.  There is a long creamy sweet aftertaste that makes the mouth water.  Lots of saliva producing wet and oily mouthfeeling.  Feel Qi in the Chest and mind feels happy…

Second infusion has an oily creamy pop of cherry and lots of slavia producing and deep throat opening effect.  Lots of sweetness develops with cherry fruity and creamy lots of saliva and delicious tastes…

The third infusion has a sour sweet cherry pop of taste with very oily and saliva producing slight sour astringent taste.  Lots of layers of sweetness in these Wanggong.  Strong Chest Qi developing here.  Limbs and shoulders heavy.

4th is left to cool and has a smooth caramel rich oily taste with layers of creamy sweet and tropical fruity tastes.  Delicious rich layered in sweetness here… Yummy!  Nice oily taste. Chest Qi.

5th is left to cool and has a caramel pungent cooling creamy rich sweet onset with hints of tropical fruity tastes.  Thick delicious sweet tastes.  Mouthfeeling is wet and oily fluffy.  Nice saliva returning and deep throat opening.  Nice relaxing Qi.

6th has an oily rich creamy sweet with a pop of cherry and a caramel finish.  Oily and faintly silty mouthfeeling with deeper throat opening and less returning saliva taste now. Nice pungent cool across the profile as well.  Chest opening Qi with a relaxing mild spaciness.

7th has a juicy fruity creamy pop of taste then transitions to a more creamy vanilla pudding taste.  Chest opening and mild spacy relaxing.  Pungent taste throughout and a slight stick lips and roof of mouth.  Faint silty mouthfeeling.

8th is a 30 second infusion oops… it turns out more sour and fruity up front with a sour very mild astringent pucker with creamy sweet tastes emerging underneath.  Saliva producing tastes.  Sour tropical fruity/cherry tastes is throughout the profile here.  Mild spacey relaxing feeling.  Shoulders feel light and chest open.

9th infusion is left to cool and gives off a creamy woody sweetness with a mouthwatering feeling and cool pungent throughout.  Calm spacy mild Qi with some open Chest and shoulders bodyfeeling.

10th has a woody mild fruity taste with hints of bitter-sweet coco over fruity tastes.  Mild tastes now with a mild oily mouthfeeling.  Nice sweet finish in the mouth. Nice mild relaxing spaciness.

This 2015 is a more mild version of the early samples or a balance of high quality Qi of the 2013 and power of the 2014.  Not as nice as either earlier samples but still a nice Gushu Wangong.

Shah8’s Tasting Notes


2014 BaoHongYinJi Wangong: Invigorating Qi Wanggong!

This was the next series of posts features BaoHongYinJi Spring Wanggong vertical Sample set purchased from Liquid Proust.   After the 2013 last post I was ready for some top grade Wangong and this didn’t let me down…

Dry leaves have a sweet fruity odour to them almost dried fruity like.

First infusion has a grains cereal onset with a woody grain emerging sweetness over a watery and subtle lubricating feel.  There is a long candy like finish here… really nice.  Strong Qi Chest opening.

Second infusion has a caramel fruity and pungent full mouth sweetness with some faint smoke woody far in the distance the taste is really dense and full and has a pop of dense layered fruity tastes.    The mouthfeeling and throatfeeling is of opening and chalky full feeling.  Nice lubricating saliva.  Coco tastes minutes later as well as floral tastes.  Lots going on very full with strong Qi, quite satisfying.

Third infusion has a fruity cherry coco pop of oily and dense cherry coco sweetness.  Very nice rich taste.  Some more distinct coco bitterness here but also quite oily texture and a silty full mouth- and throat-feeling.  Vibrant cherry fruity taste with faint smoke and coco dense and long finish.  Some creamy sweet tastes in there.  Strong Chesty Qi with a bit of warmth to flush the face. 

Fourth is left to cool and gives off an oily fruity pop of tastes creamy and fruity with a faint smoke and deep rich coco finish.  Dense presentation of flavor in an oily texture and smooth silty full mouth and throat with deep throat opening. Strong spacy Qi with stimulating Chest beats. This Qi is a bit more invigorating that the 2013 more energetic flow and less limbs and body floating.

The fifth is left to cool and gives off a smooth almost caramel sweet creamy very faint incense smoke.  There is a silty mouthfeeling and throatfeeling with deep throat opening and a coco finish in the mouth with some creamy sweet edges.  Nice Chest energy and energetic spacy Qi.

The sixth infusion has a milky caramel almost creamy fruity onset that moves to a slightly woody but more prominent bitter-sweet coco.  Strong Chest beats and energetic mind euphoria.  Smooth silky silty mouthfeeling and throatfeeling.  Chalky coco long finish.

Okay I lost a few of the infusions here but I’m onto the long mug steeping and its really perfume, rich berry pop in the initial taste with a berry cherry fruity oily taste.  The rich oily taste is really satisfying to me.  Has a pungent coolness throughout that expands in the mouth and throat over an oily silty full feeling a bit of creamy taste appears with fruity and mild coco.  It almost tastes like one of those cherry chocolate candies you get in a box of chocolates.  Strong Qi races the chest and alerts the mind… Oops I won’t be sleeping until late tonight… better post some blog posts!