Thursday, May 23, 2024

1999 Yang Qing Hao MiTsang: Yiwu Gushu Qi


I got this sample from Liquid Proust in 2020 and sampled it shortly after here… the prices on these 1999 YQH productions have actually gone down a little since I last published on them.  All of the Yang Qing Hao 1999 (MiTsang $200.00 for 500g brick or $0.40/g TsangMi $330.00 for 1KG brick or $0.33/g JinTuo $135.00 for 250g Jincha or $0.54/g) productions are made of the same materials and pressed in 2007 with aged maocha.

Dry leaves have a woody aged mulch odour. The rinse is sweet creamy woody Yiwu like odour.

Fist infusion has a watery woody creamy sweet taste.  Wet mouthfeel. 

Second infusion has a wet watery taste with creamy sweet woody.  Simple but undeniably YiWu.  Relaxing feel good a bit of arms limb lightness bodyfeeling.

Third is a creamy watery woody taste.  The mouthfeel is a bit tight cottony now.  Long cool breath with faint very faint sweet candy. Some warm brow and light limbs, deeper relaxing spacy mind slow. I sigh…. Slight almost ghostly tropical fruits.

Fourth infusion has a fruity dry woody pop with a creamy candy return and finish along with cooling creamy talc.  Face tingling arms limbs light. Warm brow.  Slight tight sticky mouthfeeling.

Fifth infusion left to cool is sweet woody incense bready sweetness cool breath with very faint candy cemreamy sweet.  Space relaxing qi. Limbs light face numb. Slight warm face.

Sixth infusion has a resin woody almost sour fallen leaf incense sweet creamy onset.  Chalky slight dry mouthfeel.  Creamy faint candy sweet finish.  Warm face and relaxed spacy qi with light limbs.

Seventh has a woody resin slight faint smoke incense with creamy sweet finish. Mouthfeel is becoming a bit drier and sticky. Squeaky gums.

Eighth has a woody leaf drier mouthfeel less sweet now but subtle. Slight cool finish with slight sweet taste. Bigger Spacy relaxing Qi with bodyfeel of numb face and light arms.

Ninth infusion has woody faint sweet taste.  Not much left in these flash infusions a bit cool and creamy sweetness. Strong deep Qi which swells the Heart and Chest now with face tingling and arms and limbs light.    

10th I put for a long mug steeping it comes off bitter woody leaf with a creamy slight medicinal camphor vegetal woody.  Strong deep Qi and bodyfeeling. Super strong Qi knocks me on my ass!

The overnight infusion is woody slight dirt but mainly sweet with a long sweet finish.  There is mainly a woody dirt almost bitter but a return of super faint candy returning.  Deep Qi sensation with chest opening face warming and limbs.

Has stronger bodyfeeling and deeper Qi feeling and quality than 2001 Naked Yiwu and 1999 Daye ZhengShan MYF Special Order which I sampled the days before this one.  The difference in storage when comparing thee is more profound because Yang Qing Hao has a more natural Taiwanese storage where the other two are dry stored.

Nice way to kick off the Yang Qing Hao 2024 Re-Taste Project. Even these 1999 Yang Qing Hao productions which are all, I believe pressed of the same materials. They all contain 1999 Yiwu Gushu maocha which was aged for 8 years before being pressed into 1Kg and 500g bricks, tuos, and jinchas in 2007.  The leaf has a tighter rolling processing than most Yang Qing Hao only few of their productions have a production of tighter rolled leaf the 2004 Yang Qing Hao Zhengcang is another that comes to mind. 

Overall a good value aged Yiwu option with a focus on Qi.


Sunday, May 12, 2024

Yang Qing Hao Re-Tasting (Re-Experiencing) Project

Well I have been drinking some great puerhs throughout the winter and into the springtime.  In January just before their new website launched, I ordered some Yang Qing Hao samples I hadn’t yet tried. The website has been up and running for weeks now and is really nice to use and allows for samples to be ordered.  It also used the less common English transliterations so don’t get confused about that.  Good Job Mr Yang and Emmett!  I started to re-sample the whole catalog from oldest to newest and thought to post the notes and comparisons here for your enjoyment and commentary.

The thing is with YangQing Hao is that most of what you will find in the English internet is from sessions during 2016-2021.  I have found that many Yang Qing Hao puerh that people have found to be great aren’t so much anymore and others that were downplayed have aged better.  Furthermore, there is a handful of the Yang Qing Hao offerings that have not been posted on or given a pass- we will look at these too…Probably Shah8 is the only person to post on all of them but over decades- I will try to link some of his notes.  I will use the transliterations used on the new site with links to the older tasting notes.

Okay let us begin… with the 2004s.


Sunday, May 5, 2024

1998 Zhongcha 8582 vs 1998 Menghai Tea Factory 8582

Dry leaves seem bigger than the 1998 Menghai Tea Factory 8582 Houde cake and more what I expect from 8582 leaf grade recipe. It smells of dry woody odours - has more of that Tea Urchin storage odour than anything.  This 1998 Zhongcha 8582 goes for $265.00 for 357g cake (or $0.74/g) at Tea Urchin.  I purchased this sample a few years ago and intended to sample them with the other two Zhongcha offerings at Tea Urchin the 2004 Zhongcha Lotus Aroma and the 2001 Zhongcha Ba Zhong but wasn’t able to.   I just sampled this one recently…

Rinsed leaves have a sweet woody leaf faint maple sweetness.

First infusion has a dry watery woody taste with a subtle raisin sweet finish.  Dry woody raison.  Slight dry sticky mouthfeel. Energy in chest is stronger.

Second infusion has a woody fallen leaf raisin woody taste.  Mainly dry woody taste with dry sticky mouthfeel.  Stronger chesty feeling and energetic. Subtle plum sweetness under dry woody and in aftertaste before dryness.

Third has a woody teak woody sweetness.  Woody almost varnished taste. Sone faint coco in the aftertaste.

Fourth infusion is a woody varnish slight sour woody taste with a coco woody finish.  Subtle warming face and chest.  Stronger chest beats.  Coco woody finish. Sweet woody coco.

5th has a woody teak wood sweet onset with sweet dry woody teak taste.  Woody dry with background sweetness. Some mouthwatering coco in the finish.  Chest beats strong. Warming.

6th has a sweet almost raison sweetness with wood mouthwatering return coco is slightly bittersweet.  Mouth is slight sticky dry big chesty qi and energy surge.  Warming. 

7th has an almost syrupy woody sweet taste with some coco bittersweet finish. There is this nice sort of maple woody coco sweet taste.  Qi is strongly alerting and chest pounding with some warming.  

8th is a sweet woody teak sort of honey sweet woody with a silty mouthfeeling and mouthwatering return of coco sweet taste.  Strong Qi alerting with chest beats strong and warming face.

9th has a woody almost spice woody sweet taste.  There is a return of woody coco taste. Mouthwatering coco finish. Strong alerting qi will have me staying up too late tonight!

10th I come back to the pot a few days later it has a sweet watery plum taste with an oily feel and some faint returning bitter sweet coco faint aftertaste.  Some warming Qi and chest beats alertness.

11th has an incense almost pond dry storage taste.  Not that sweet with a smoke coco chocolate bittersweet finish.  Silty slight dry mouthfeel. Stronger warming and chest beating Qi. 

12th has a sour cherry bitter sweet pond and dry woody onset with coco more bitter than sweet finish with smoke.  Warming face qi with chest beats. Finishes bitter woody slight smoke. 

13th has a woody pond slight dry woody sweetness.  There is a flatter drier mouthfeel with slight bitter and smoke.  Mouthfeel starting to become slightly gripping. Warming Qi and chest beats.

Long mug steeping of spent leaves has an earthy woody plum taste with pop of sweet cherry.  There is a drier mouthfeel and bitter woody not much coco but a sweet bitter plum finish. Squeeky teeth feeling.  With big energy alerting bursts with chest pounding. There is a dirt raisin taste throughout.

I do another few days long steeping but it just pretty much is dry woody bark with very faint tastes of sweet raisin almost medical incense.

Vs 1998 Menghai Tea Factory 8582 (pictured Right)-  is much much sweeter and much much more complex aged puerh.  Both puerh have an overall factory feel and taste.  Both were exposed to some more humid but not overly wet storage than where they were dry stored longer term.  The zhongcha was then stored in Tea Urchins dry storage and the Menghai Tea Factory in Houde’s hot dry storage. The Houde cake has a deep complex medical ginseng complexity over very very sweet tastes. The Tea Urchin is not that sweet and has a more bittersweet woody pondy.  The Houde has a deeper warming and energizing Qi where the Tea Urchin has more zippy factory Qi.

Note on the three Zhongcha offerings at Tea Urchin…They were all selected to represent the classic stereotype Zhongcha offerings- a more muted elegant one- 2004 Zhongcha Lotus Aroma, the powerful smoky Bulang one- the 2001 Zhongcha Ba Zhong, and the more classic factory style- 1998 Zhongcha 8582. They are all pretty good for their price but not good enough for me to cake anyways… at least not yet…


Thursday, May 2, 2024

2001 Zhongcha “Ba Zhong”: Old School Smoky Strength

*** These tasting notes were from 2021/2022… According to the Tea Urchin’s site, this was stored in Taiwan until 2014 when it was purchased and stored with Tea Urchin’s tea in Shanghai for the remainder of its life.  Pretty close to 1/2 Taiwanese storage and 1/2 Shanghai.  Belle and Eugene guess it has some Bulang leaves in the mix and the description makes it sound a bit old school, smoky, and rustic.  This 2001 Zhongcha “Ba Zhong” 357g cake goes for $265.00 or $0.74/g.

Dry leaves smell of smoke with a fair bit of creamy sweet odours and faint wood.  The dry leaf both looks and smells pretty appetizing…

The first infusion has a smoky honey-like onset. There are underlying creamy and almost strawberry cherry plum notes.  The mouthfeeling is a flat fine sandy texture.  The aftertaste is almost nutty but more faint bitter with a creamy sweetness underneath. Smoke extends long into the aftertaste.  This puerh feels a lot like 2005 Nanqiao Double Lions.  There is a strong feeling emerging with the Qi.

The 2nd has a tangy sweet fruity onset but with a heavy dose of smoke.  The fruity taste is mainly a syrupy presentation with an incense woodiness to it and subtle faint bitterness.  There is a deep slow moving coolness in the throat which kicks out a long creamy sweetness that slowly fades into smoke.  The mouthfeeling is a thick silty dryness.  There is lots going on here with lots of complexity emerging from the storage which does this cake quite well.  The Qi is strong in the Chest and races the Heart.  It alerts the mind but I find myself taking deeper breaths.  It has a strong pull on the mind, rendering me unable to concentrate…

The 3rd has a tangy fruity then sweet then almost savory meaty smoke taste.  There is a smoky earthy taste throughout.  The mouthfeel is really thick silty full with nice throat stimulation.  Flavour, Qi, and mouthfeeling are all quite strong.  Creamy sweet then smoky finish.

4th is a smoky, syrupy not that sweet onset with a long cool emerging throat and subtle creamy sweet then smoky finish.  This infusion tastes and feels a lot like the 2006 Rustic Zhongcha of TeasWeLike.  Nice silty full mouthfeeling.  Some chest and alerting but also unfocusing energy.

5th has a rich sweet syrupy caramel and strawberry plum with a decent amount of smoke.  There is some long faint cooling and some creamy emerging sweetness that fades into smoke.  Nice unfocused fuzzy head with some alerting and chest sensations.

6th is cooled down but gives off a very nice caramel smoke taste.  The flavour is really pure and full smoky but not harsh, strong but not overwhelming. There is less cooling here and a smoke creamy caramel finish.  Nice dense taste.

7th has a subtle bitter smoke with less dense caramel taste.  There is a grainy almost dry mouthfeeling now with the bitterness. This infusion tastes less sweet and more smoke, bitter, and a bit harsh.  Nice uplifting with fuzzy thoughts.

8th has a lesser sweet caramel plum with some smoke and less bitter.  It has a dense and rich presentation here with sweetness almost syrupy scattered throughout under the smoke.  Nice uplifting and fuzzy thoughts.

9th syrupy caramel not that creamy sweet with significant smoke.  Full condensed taste with a subtle cool throat.  Nice silty thick mouthcoating which sticks to teeth.  Alerting but slightly spacy here.

10th has a juicy smoky presentation with a slight bitter dirt almost coco like finish.  The aftertaste has a sweet nutty breath but mainly just mild smoke. Sticky tongue feeling.

11th has a juicy smoke taste to it with a subtle cooling breath and bitter smoke not sweet finish now. Thicker sticky sandy aftertaste.  Nice relaxing vibe now.

12th a bit more syrupy onset with, yes, a bit of smoke, nice vibrant smoke finish.  Not turbid or harsh or hazy in its presentation…. Nice upbeat with a heavy thoughts feeling.  Thick sticky almost dry full mouthfeeling.

13th has a juicy syrupy density to it but not that sweet anymore but, again, nicely smoky…

The mug steeping is a strong smoke with condensed syrupy woody sweetness and resin like taste.  Still very powerful, flavourful, and smoky.

Vs 2006 Rustic Zhongcha- very similar in most ways- both very Rustic old school productions both aged about the same with Rustic having stronger Malaysian storage and this cake with the ½ Taiwanese then drier Shanghai storage but aged a bit longer… they feel both at the same point of aging. The Rustic still has a bit more youthful harshness and is more random and impure in its blend.  I think I like this one better but hard to say.


2004 Zhongcha “Lotus Aroma”

*Just a note that these tasting notes are from 2021/2022….This one was naturally Malaysian stored for 10 years before being put in drier cooler Shanghai storage since 2014.  Apparently, this will be a fragrant one… This 2004 Zhongcha “Lotus Aroma” 357g cakes goes for $198.00 or $0.55/g at Tea Urchin.

Dry leaves smell of very sweet, very floral aroma without much aged smell at all.

First infusion has a really sweet bread and cherry plum odour from the wet leaves.  There is a fruit cake and powdery chalky floral like taste upfront with some fallen leaf aspect but quite sweet throughout and with a long creamy sweet finish.  The mouthfeeling is oily and fluffy and full.  Nice thick sweet but aged feeling.  Sweet and salivating throughout. This has a nice uplifting and cheery feeling.

Second has a creamy powdery talc onset with a creamy brassy mid taste that leads into a cool aftertaste some saliva returning.  There is a creamy bread and talc plum finish. There are hints at old books and leaf but it is primarily sweet throughout. There is a touch of bitter astringency here.  Not very woody tasting but more pastry sweetness with creamy, plum, and talc.  Nice relaxing feel good qi.  Nice focusing mind.  Tastes vaguely like a tippy 7532 crossed with something like 2001 TeasWeLike HuangYin.

Third infusion has an oat, floral, bready sweet, not as talc onset that reaches into a brassy mid-taste.  There is this pop of plum taste that fades into a creamier long aftertaste.  The mouthfeeling is thick nice chalky full feeling in the mouth.  Noticeable talc, granny powder taste in here… always a good sign. Nice full sweet aged profile.  Lots of sweet complexity.

The fourth infusion has a plum tart creamy talc onset.  There is a thicker chalky building mouthfeeling here.  A bit of woody taste comes in and less creamy salivating sweetness.  There is a slight cooling with some very mild astringent bitterness.  Nice feeling good Qi.  

5th has a plum taste with talc powdery taste.  Nice chalky full and becoming a bit more gripping mouthfeeling.  The aftertaste after a bit of mouth cooling is chalky powdery sweetness with a plum taste.  Nice feeling good Qi, nice focusing energy.

6th has a nice mellow woody almost plum taste that is a bit watery now and loosing is thick sweetness.  The mouthfeeling is more thin sandy than chalky full. There is some talc powdery sweetness in the aftertaste.  Nice vibes.

7th has a juicy fallen leaf not as sweet taste.  There is a woody bland talc finish to it over a thin sandy mouthfeeling.  Nice relaxing.

8th has a woody leafy taste.  Most of the complexity is all but gone with this tippy blend that is what you would expect… but I want more… you can feel some body feeling racing the Heart a bit…

Next day I attempt mug steepings… 

Overall, this is a really interesting cake and the two storages have done this cake well.  It is super fragrant and delicious with a Qi that makes you feel good. Nice and enjoyable for me.