What HeiCha are you drinking

Puerh and other heicha
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debunix
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Location: Los Angeles, CA

Sun Mar 03, 2019 9:49 am

Those both sound lovely, but especially the golden raisin bread. My mind is translating that into something like the caramel sweetness of a perfect infuson of Golden Needle White Lotus shu puerh from Menghai, adding a bit of plummy fruitiness, and imagining that the raisins are in a toasted whole-grain bread with that deep flavor.

Mmmmm.
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Stephen
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Location: Bay Area, California

Tue Mar 12, 2019 9:16 pm

2012 Three Cranes Liu Bao cake from TealifeHK. Smooth and easy drinking. Smoother than I expected for the age.

2012-2013 Sun Yi Shun Raw Liu An from TealifeHK. Pleasant and surprisingly easy to drink. An interesting tea that reminds me of sheng pu er and a little of a Kang brick tea.
Flavor Hedonist
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Location: Philippines

Wed Mar 20, 2019 11:17 am

I've been having 2014 Yun Tai Mountain Wild Tian Jian from Yunnan Sourcing for the past few days. As a frequent drinker of Laphroiag, the peaty notes that Scott described instantly appealed to me. I opened the box last Sunday after getting hungover on Laphroiag 10 the night before. The tea itself began with notes of peat and pine smoke. And, it introduced a molasses sweetness by the fourth infusion and keeps on becoming sweeter and sweeter.

This morning, I drank it again inside my Nixing Pot. The clay muted the peat and smoke but amplified the pine notes. The pine was kinda resinous similar to hops. I don't know if this is the optimum way to drink it tbh. Tian Jian still confuses me. Maybe I'll try a boil next time. :D
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Stephen
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Tue Mar 26, 2019 9:53 pm

I brewed up the 90's Liu An from Yunnan Sourcing. I usually find this tea a bit too strong when brewed at 1g to 15-20ml. This time I brewed 6-7g in a 180ml zini teapot and was rewarded with a few very pleasant steepings. Most notable was the clarity and vibrancy of the deep red brew.
Flavor Hedonist
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Mon Apr 08, 2019 6:05 am

A very important Mainland Chinese business partner who particularly loves heicha paid me a visit a few hours ago. I brought out the good stuff and served him some 2002 Aged Wild Liu Bao Tea "803" from Yunnan Sourcing. I brewed it in a Nixing pot and damn that tea brewed like forever. I probably used 3 liters for about 5 grams. The tea tasted like very sweet wood that keeps on getting sweeter each steep, subtle undertones of mushrooms, earth and vanilla bean. It's been 4 hours now, I had a quick nap an hour ago and I'm still feeling a bit tea drunk. :D And, he seems happy about the tea as well.
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wave_code
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Sat Apr 27, 2019 7:32 am

Been heavy on exploring some Malaysian storage liu bao lately, which is proving interesting for learning about storage and aging. 2011 CNNP 1st grade, 90s CNNP 1st grade, and 90s VIVE from Lao Shop, as well as some supposedly late 80s Wuzhou from a private seller.

The VIVE I have to admit didn't make a huge impression on me, but it was just a small sample so doesn't seem fair to make any sort of real assessment of it other than I'm not sure I'll be leaping out of my seat to get my hands on more. Interesting to try, just not what I am looking for. The 2011 CNNP is quite nice- smooth, super clean, some slight smoke, still on the darker side but a bit young. I could taste much more of the black tea and sweet notes under the fermentation which is nice. I'm guessing this is the storage which slows down everything compared to something more humid resulting in the tea not aging so quickly, but also allowing more flavors out that might get masked with heavy storage notes otherwise. Looking forward to getting to know this tea better.

90s CNNP was also interesting. It came from Cha-No-Yu-Tea Art in Kuala Lumpur who seem to have a good reputation for liu bao and will warrant more research on my part. Packed in 12g bags, but with an air hole poked in it. A good reminder and careful packaging that while it is special and ready to enjoy now this tea is still very much alive, still changing, and can be kept longer. Darker and certainly having had more time for fermentation, the brews still remind me of the other newer CNNP teas - only the first steep or two being much darker with a quick fade to a lighter soup, but still plenty of flavor. I Got a pretty strong head/body feel from this one, got very relaxed and mellow and after a couple more steeps felt like I could go straight to bed. Took quite a bit of food to get me moving again and shake it off. Better for evening drinking. I think I went 8 rounds, and could still have boiled the leaves. Next time. I also tried it flash steeped the first time, 5g/100ml in porcelain and have to admit I wasn't super impressed initially, but this may have also been the water. This second time I tried 7g/175ml in stoneware going for longer steeps and the tea was MUCH better this way, way more complex and interesting. Also considering the teas age I think longer steeps with longer breaks in between helped the leaves rehydrate and open up much more.

Late 80s Wuzhou... Again, learning about the storage here when I first got the tea I though no way it was as old as claimed, but I suppose with how stable Malaysian conditions can be for storage there is no reason for the tea to seem super old or degraded or dank - the tea tasted very clean, no storage notes or off flavors. Lighter fermentation style, and like a lot of the other loose Three Cranes teas the soup color is on the light side but the flavor is there. Not as heavy on the forest floor flavors as others, and after the initial couple brews the tea gets very very malty and nutty, almost like tossing some roasted peanut shell in with the tea, also more floral notes. Really enjoyable, went for around 7 rounds again 7g/175ml in stoneware.

Next step in the storage adventure... I recently got a 90s cake from Taiwan, no label since it comes from a lot for a private collector but the shape of the cake makes me think it is Wuzhou/Three Cranes since it is in that small puck shape.
TheartofMat
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Tue Apr 30, 2019 7:25 am

I am curious what everyone is drinking their heicha out of, this has always been a grey area for me. Pots, gaiwan, yixing or maybe porcelain??
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Stephen
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Tue Apr 30, 2019 10:12 pm

TheartofMat wrote:
Tue Apr 30, 2019 7:25 am
I am curious what everyone is drinking their heicha out of, this has always been a grey area for me. Pots, gaiwan, yixing or maybe porcelain??
I usually treat heicha the same way as shu puer so I usually use zini yixing teapots.
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wave_code
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Wed May 01, 2019 1:06 pm

TheartofMat wrote:
Tue Apr 30, 2019 7:25 am
I am curious what everyone is drinking their heicha out of, this has always been a grey area for me. Pots, gaiwan, yixing or maybe porcelain??
I use pots now, sometimes porcelain, but mostly stoneware. I plan on investing in some nixing brown clay soon for my liu bao since it is what I drink most at this point. Originally I was using a (porcelain) gaiwan, but I found it frustrating with hei cha since you generally want your water as hot as possible and to really keep your heat up over the session. The gaiwan just didn't hold the heat well enough for me, making some highly compressed teas take too long to really open up, and lots more unnecessary burned finger tips with using such hot water. Investing in a better gaiwan could also have been a solution here, but also with there being much more small sediment and broken leaves with a lot of hei cha having the filter on the pot just makes things much easier.
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