2008 Yong Pin Hao Yiwu
Friday falls upon me and I’m looking for something special to drink. Really, I crave silver needles or some downy, budset green tea. With neither in the house, I grab this tea. What was originally intended to be a sample purchase turned into an entire cake by way of a gracious mistake on behalf of the vendor – he let me keep it!
In a way, I had put this tea up on a pedestal. It was one of the first entire cakes that I had acquired, despite not knowing what it tasted like, and at the time, was a cake I considered a little too pricey. Accordingly, it has taken me over a year to unwrap this sultry beast and taste it.
Just look at the size of those leaves! Smeared all over the outside of this cake are long, graceful, slender, twisted curls of the tea tree, each anointed with a beautiful haze of fine white fuzz. The rinse breathes an intense, browned-caramel toffee sensation from the leaves; surprising, but enjoyable. The first steeps are nothing but pure butter, with all that delectable light, fruity Yiwu essence coming in a silky, smooth vehicle. The soup a bright, even yellow, the tea hardly oxidizes as it sits in the cup.
As amazing the leaves, the aroma, and the flavor, oh, to live for that finish, that aftertaste, that graceful departure from the tongue. Cooling and minty above, lingering, herbal and dry below. Rounded, complex, soft, elegant, tight and easily remembered. Using only a scant five grams of large unbroken leaves in a 120 mL gaiwan, the overall bitterness is much reduced, but still pleasingly balanced. This kind of bingcha is exactly why I drink puerh.
Tea Goober – 2008 Yong Pin Hao ” YiWu Wild Arbor”