What Oolong Are You Drinking

Semi-oxidized tea
polezaivsani
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Mon Sep 14, 2020 1:31 pm

Taking notes is less than usual practice for me, and since i wanted to do that, i went with both yanchas that where awaiting a record in the log, both from Wuyi Origin. That also aligned well with the preference for darker brews as days only recently set off to another summer and seasoning of the vessel for the chococalatey dark oolongs.

1. Mei Zhan 2013. Has cocoa beans written all over it. Dry leaves, we leaves, soup and aftertaste all have plenty of cocoa. Wet leaves have a wooden cask soaked in burnt malt base and if you keep at it - dried apples and plums with moss coming through in the end. Malty, slightly sweet, but not fruity, well built soup. With occasional splashes of tingling acid. Empty cup full of incense and burnt malt. 5g/60ml. Brings forth astringency if over brewed. Hence first 4 steeps where flash actions, starting to up a bit afterwards with 40s by 8th step, 1m next and completely lost count of time by the last infusion. Properly stimulating treat that i like after dark with muted lights.

2. Jin Mao Hou from last year. Intoxicating smell of rocks, bark, a whiff of char and distant sweetness. Couple infusions in i get a smell of linden honey off of the broth and lingering in the aftertaste. Malty broth turns into creamy sandal wood halfway into the session. Glimmer of sweet berries in there too. Sweet and pungent incense in the empty cup. Nothing complicated, but a solid midday of afternoon tea. Had 12 infusions at 5g/60ml. Started with flash steeps trying not to bring forth any astringency, but there was none present anywhere. 5th - 15s, 20s, 30s (that's where linden honey became apparent), 1m and then a bunch more till there where no more juice left.

Ps. just realized that i should've shot leaves, but was the clay obsession get better part of me i guess :)
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Dresden
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Tue Sep 15, 2020 6:01 pm

Finishing up some Farmer's Choice Baozhong from Floating Leaves. Nice floral green oolong profile with a bit of fruity sweetness. The fruit flavor sort of reminds me of dried pineapple. Really refreshing and nice on a dreary, overcast day.
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OCTO
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Thu Sep 17, 2020 7:58 am

Having some fresh 2020 TieGuanYin.... tonight’s match is none other than 80s DCQ blended with ZiNi. Results are as expected. Long lasting fragrance and pronounced upper nuances. Mouthfeel and chayun is strong and lasting.

Cheers!!
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TeaTotaling
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Thu Sep 17, 2020 6:17 pm

OCTO wrote:
Thu Sep 17, 2020 7:58 am
Having some fresh 2020 TieGuanYin.... tonight’s match is none other than 80s DCQ blended with ZiNi. Results are as expected. Long lasting fragrance and pronounced upper nuances. Mouthfeel and chayun is strong and lasting.

Cheers!!
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Image
😍 💚 😍 💚

Lovely! Leaves look like they are straight from the farm. Beautiful green contrasted with the warm DCQ/ZiNi.

What size is the pot & roughly how much leaf?? 🌱
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OCTO
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Thu Sep 17, 2020 6:54 pm

TeaTotaling wrote:
Thu Sep 17, 2020 6:17 pm

😍 💚 😍 💚

Lovely! Leaves look like they are straight from the farm. Beautiful green contrasted with the warm DCQ/ZiNi.

What size is the pot & roughly how much leaf?? 🌱
@TeaTotaling

Thanks.

The leaves are not as vibrant as it looks in the photograph. Photo auto edit in iPhone tends to make them appear more vibrant. None the less, the tea is freshly harvested mid 2020.

The pot is about 280ml to 300ml, never really measured. Felt a little adventurous last nite, used 2 packs of 7g each.. that’s 14g total. I would usually brew 1 pack to approximately 120ml of water.

Cheers!!
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StoneLadle
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Fri Sep 18, 2020 3:13 am

Octo's Nuclear Green Qingxiang....
Octo's Nuclear Green Qingxiang....
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I can only drink this stuff when @OCTO makes it...
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StoneLadle
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Fri Sep 18, 2020 6:55 am

From top to bottom... Hong Kong, Taiwan, Malaysia
From top to bottom... Hong Kong, Taiwan, Malaysia
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Now we are on to a three way comparison of high roast Tie Guan Yin.

It is interesting to note that the Malaysian and Hong Kong teas were finished locally in their respective areas...
polezaivsani
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Fri Sep 18, 2020 7:48 am

@StoneLadle, @OCTO please, share your thoughts about them once the party is over while you'll be cooking more water for another round :)
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OCTO
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Fri Sep 18, 2020 11:04 am

After an afternoon of fresh green TGY, competition DanCong, Three Kingdom Roasted TGY and a heavy meal, continued with aged oolongs to activate the palettes and senses. 20 - 30 yearold oolongs..... topped with a brew of 60 yearold aged oolong from Taiwan. Brewed in a medium fire DCQ pot.

Cheers!!
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Ethan Kurland
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Fri Sep 18, 2020 2:38 pm

OCTO wrote:
Fri Sep 18, 2020 11:04 am
...., continued with aged oolongs to activate the palettes and senses. 20 - 30 yearold oolongs..... topped with a brew of 60 yearold aged oolong from Taiwan....
How are they different? 20 year old compared to 30 year old, 60 year old, etc.?

Are you confident that the 60 year old is really that old?

If a tea was produced 20 years ago, did it spend all of time since production being aged?

I enjoy an aged oolong that spent 5+ years in a sealed ceramic urn. The leaves were removed from that urn several years ago. I don't think it has changed from several years ago. I also enjoy an oolong that was produced in 1998 & aged in a sealed urn for 22 years. In the 2 years that I have been drinking this old tea, I don't feel that it has aged more (nor changed in other ways) since coming out of the urn.

Additionally, for me the better of these 2 aged oolongs, is the younger tea, though the much older tea is smoother & preferred by old tea masters with whom I drank this tea on 2 occasions in Tainan. The younger is plenty smooth & is more dynamic & interesting for my palate; however, differences are small.

50 years of aging, how does one know? One knows whether he likes what he drinks though. When I first started being serious about tea, I bought several aged teas based on the descriptions of flavors they delivered & their stories. I was lucky most of the time. Good luck did not continue to run so consistently.

Several years ago, I was taken to a shop near Sun Moon Lake by a "priest/tea master" whom I respect. I was in an awkward position. I drank 2 oolongs there (several rounds of each) that were said to be aged more than 50 years. They were bland & showed no special benefit from aging close to justifying exceedingly high prices that was asked for them. I wanted to buy something from the shop to be polite; so I tasted a "50 year-old" pu-erh (or a tea very much like pu-erh but of Taiwanese heritage, my memory is vague on this). I had bought a tea with such provenance or accompanying story in another city that was okay & more than okay for the price being asked). However, this "pu" by Sun Moon Lake was awful.

Fortunately, the shop offered some Ruby Jade 21 in teabags that was cheap enough & good enough for me to buy enough to be polite. (I gave it to relatives who only use bags & are thankful for some tea from one my trips).

OCTO, I use aged oolongs for many infusions. Did you drink 3 of them on the same day?
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OCTO
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Sat Sep 19, 2020 8:45 pm

Ethan Kurland wrote:
Fri Sep 18, 2020 2:38 pm
How are they different? 20 year old compared to 30 year old, 60 year old, etc.?
The 20 and the 30 didn't taste that much of a difference but the 20 had a hint of fruity sweetness to it. At 30, the aged aroma "ChenWei" started to develop.
Ethan Kurland wrote:
Fri Sep 18, 2020 2:38 pm
Are you confident that the 60 year old is really that old?
I was accompanied by senior government officials and close associates whom took my to a reputable teashop (I don't remember the name) in Luku where we let a national level calligrapher for tea and some casual chit chat. I bought the 50 yearold Oolong there. I've been drinking this tea for more than a decade now. I believe there is no definitely answer there, but I would trust the recommendations of my friends and associates. The teashop owner is also a student of my close family friend.
Ethan Kurland wrote:
Fri Sep 18, 2020 2:38 pm
If a tea was produced 20 years ago, did it spend all of time since production being aged?
I was made to understand the tea is not intentionally aged at the beginning. Local / domestic consumption prefers them fresh. Most of the aged tea I came across are in fact are unsold GaoShan / DongDing that were kept away in the store and sometimes forgotten until decades later.
Ethan Kurland wrote:
Fri Sep 18, 2020 2:38 pm
I enjoy an aged oolong that spent 5+ years in a sealed ceramic urn. The leaves were removed from that urn several years ago. I don't think it has changed from several years ago. I also enjoy an oolong that was produced in 1998 & aged in a sealed urn for 22 years. In the 2 years that I have been drinking this old tea, I don't feel that it has aged more (nor changed in other ways) since coming out of the urn.
I guess the key word here is "sealed". Aging process definitely slows down and at times to a halt in the absence of fresh air and humidity. I left a small batch of Muza TGY inside my HeiNi teapot stored it wrapped and boxed up in my cupboard for almost 8 years. The results were pretty amazing in my books.. hahaha... it aged and taste profile changed completely. In addition to that, the HeiNi pot which I was having problems finding a tea to pair it with absorbed the tea aroma and that kind of "seasoned" the pot for oolong and it is brewing very nice Oolong and Sheng LiuBao now... yeah.. one of my quirky experiments ... hahahahaha
Ethan Kurland wrote:
Fri Sep 18, 2020 2:38 pm
Additionally, for me the better of these 2 aged oolongs, is the younger tea, though the much older tea is smoother & preferred by old tea masters with whom I drank this tea on 2 occasions in Tainan. The younger is plenty smooth & is more dynamic & interesting for my palate; however, differences are small.
It still boils down to personal preference here. I have a wide tolerance for all kinds of tea, with some exceptions. Young or aged, as long as they have been treated well, they will taste well. Differences are small on the tongue, but the ChaQi and grounding factor that comes with aged tea is undeniable.
Ethan Kurland wrote:
Fri Sep 18, 2020 2:38 pm
50 years of aging, how does one know? One knows whether he likes what he drinks though. When I first started being serious about tea, I bought several aged teas based on the descriptions of flavors they delivered & their stories. I was lucky most of the time. Good luck did not continue to run so consistently.

I drank 2 oolongs there (several rounds of each) that were said to be aged more than 50 years. They were bland & showed no special benefit from aging close to justifying exceedingly high prices that was asked for them. I wanted to buy something from the shop to be polite; so I tasted a "50 year-old" pu-erh (or a tea very much like pu-erh but of Taiwanese heritage, my memory is vague on this). However, this "pu" by Sun Moon Lake was awful.
In absolutely agree with you. I thank God and my lucky stars for good close family friends who has a trusted line of tea sources and tea friends. Honestly, coming from Malaysia, I won't buy PuErh from Taiwan without knowing how it got there. Locally here in Malaysia, we can get 100% Malaysian stored or HK/MY stored puerh. Do you remember if it's Sheng or Shou?

Ethan Kurland wrote:
Fri Sep 18, 2020 2:38 pm
OCTO, I use aged oolongs for many infusions. Did you drink 3 of them on the same day?
Yes. We drank all of them side by side. We did a 3 way comparison. 7g into 100ml gaiwan. @StoneLadle and I had a 11.5 hours tea marathon with a 1 hour dinner break. Constantly interrupted with additional requests for tea from my wife and her friends... hahahaha.... Very often it's only when compared side by side that we can get an immediate comparison. I would usually not leave it to memory and compare teas on different days. Memory often fails us and our tastebuds are often influenced by the food we consume before the tea session.

@Ethan Kurland , hope I've answered your questions... hahaha....

Cheers!!
Ethan Kurland
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Sat Sep 19, 2020 11:01 pm

OCTO wrote:
Sat Sep 19, 2020 8:45 pm

I was made to understand the tea is not intentionally aged at the beginning..... Most of the aged tea I came across are in fact are unsold GaoShan / DongDing that were kept away in the store and sometimes forgotten until decades later.

OCTO, somehow that seems to make a great aged tea sometimes. It seems so unlikely etc. but somehow sometimes.....


I guess the key word here is "sealed". Aging process definitely slows down and at times to a halt in the absence of fresh air and humidity. I left a small batch of Muza TGY inside my HeiNi teapot stored it wrapped and boxed up in my cupboard for almost 8 years. The results were pretty amazing in my books.. hahaha... it aged and taste profile changed completely. In addition to that, the HeiNi pot which I was having problems finding a tea to pair it with absorbed the tea aroma and that kind of "seasoned" the pot for oolong and it is brewing very nice Oolong and Sheng LiuBao now... yeah.. one of my quirky experiments ... hahahahaha

The tops are sealed. I've seen tape and/or hot wax employed. Those ceramic urns used for aging do breath. I can believe that a vessel can be ideal for such a purpose. Some clay in South Korea is ideal for making kimchi.
[/quote]

It still boils down to personal preference here. I have a wide tolerance for all kinds of tea, with some exceptions. Young or aged, as long as they have been treated well, they will taste well. Differences are small on the tongue, but the ChaQi and grounding factor that comes with aged tea is undeniable.

I am not blessed by ChaQi often, but the grounding factor often makes life much more pleasant for me.
[/quote]

Do you remember if it's Sheng or Shou?

I do not remember.
[/quote]
.... Memory often fails us and our tastebuds are often influenced by the food we consume before the tea session.

Ethan Kurland , hope I've answered your questions... hahaha...

Yes, memory often fails us & many factors influence what we taste & like from one day to another. Yes, you answered all ?s. That's very kind of you. All the best.
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OCTO
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Sat Sep 19, 2020 11:39 pm

polezaivsani wrote:
Fri Sep 18, 2020 7:48 am
StoneLadle, OCTO please, share your thoughts about them once the party is over while you'll be cooking more water for another round :)
@polezaivsani

We had a 11.5 hours, from 3:30PM to 3:00AM, marathon which started with fresh oolong, and ended getting swept off our feet with a string of aged PuErh and my own quirky Sheng-Shou blend.... hahahaha...

We started with Fresh 2020 TGY. Very light, fragrant and the aroma grips the tongue and stays there.Very refreshing. Good to cleanse my palettes in preparation for the marathon.

Second round was a big pot of 2018 light roast competition DanCong. Though this batch did not win any awards, it was very good and stood it's own ground. A notch up from the TGY. Big pot, big cups, big gulps of tea.... thirst quenching. Calming fragrance that sets the mood for the afternoon.

Third round was when we wanted to do a side-by-side comparison between Roasted TGY. One was re-roasted in Malaysia, another re-roasted in Hong Kong and one from China. All 3 teas are between 5 to 10 years old. Each have their own taste and character. No answer to which is better than the other.... all are equal. To each their own preference.

By now, our tummies are empty and ready for dinner.

After dinner was time for aged oolongs. Another side by side comparison... not to determine the which is better than the other, but a simple learning comparison of what we like and what we don't like... hahaha... the 60 yearold Oolong was by far one of the best aged oolong I've had and it has grew over the past 10 years. The aged aroma is definitely present and was a rollercoaster over the years. At certain years, it mellowed out so much I felt like it has lost it.... but past experience taught me to persist on. This tea was left untouched for over 4 years in a loosely covered Taiwanese clay vessel... I try not to use "urn"... hahaha... The ChaQi developed over 4 years was totally unexpected. It was so extremely calming and grounding, we started to feel so relax and calm. The ChaQi brought us to another whole new level of peace and calmness in-between giggles of surprise being totally slammed on the ground by such a soft and gentle tea. It's like getting a good beating from a TaiChi Master.... gentle, slow... then WHAM!... you're down and out... hahahaha... a friend of mine who had been having insomnia the past week got so relaxed she almost fell asleep on the chair.... and no.. it's not the food. We had a very modest amount that didn't end up restricting blood flow to the brain.... hahahahaha....

Well... that's for Oolongs..... we moved on to Puerh for the rest of the night... and that's for another thread.... hahahahaha...

Cheers!!
Rmt
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Sun Sep 20, 2020 9:16 am

Drinking a 2013 dhp from txs. Had it yesterday, and brewed it again today with different parameters. Has come out sort of thin both times. But! it has a sticky lingering sweetness to it that builds up at the back of the throat through the successive steeps. Quite good, but I reckon I can steep it much more aggressively.

Today I used 8g/140 ml zhuni. Water off the boil. 10/10/20s and so on.

A friend wanted a taste:
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Bok
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Sun Sep 20, 2020 9:43 am

Rmt wrote:
Sun Sep 20, 2020 9:16 am
Drinking a 2013 dhp from txs. Had it yesterday, and brewed it again today with different parameters. Has come out sort of thin both times. But! it has a sticky lingering sweetness to it that builds up at the back of the throat through the successive steeps. Quite good, but I reckon I can steep it much more aggressively.

Today I used 8g/140 ml zhuni. Water off the boil. 10/10/20s and so on.

A friend wanted a taste:
Image
Might also be the cup, I’d use something narrow, tall and thin-walled, preferably porcelain.
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