2008 Menghai Classic


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2008 Menghai Classic

Postby Trioxin » Nov 10th, '08, 03:08

Just wondering if anyone has tried the 2008 Menghai Classic cake, and what your thoughts were on it. I wanted to maybe purchase a couple of more Menghai cakes before the end of the year and was thinking of adding this one to my list.
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Postby Salsero » Nov 10th, '08, 03:26

If I might expand this a bit, I am interested in picking up two or three 2008 cakes since I have none and have very few Menghai sheng cakes in general, just
    2006 Spring of Menghai,
    2006 7432 Premium,
    2006 0622 Chi Tse Beeng,
    2005 7542
and I don't even know if these are good or bad picks. Just sort of fell into them blindly, like so much of what I have.

If people have favorite 2008 cakes, I would be interested in some names or recipe numbers that I could still get.
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Postby Trioxin » Nov 10th, '08, 03:32

I really think that you would like the Da Yi Hong. It's a bit stronger flavored as is your preference, and has a very nice, enjoyable complexity to it. I'm planning on getting a couple more for my collection.
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Postby shogun89 » Nov 10th, '08, 16:21

The classic is on my list, The only thing is I just cant bring myself to pay $29 shipping. Sal, I have had the '05 7542 and found it very good, but it tastes very similar to a '08 so its not worth the extra money in my opinion. I cant stress this enough, If you like young sheng pick up multiple 8582's from 2008. They are dirt cheap, well balanced, sweet and full of flavor, they really are a must have. If I had a job I would almost defiantly buy a tong of them. They are not an outstanding cake but for the price/quality/quantity they are simply unbeatable.
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Postby thanks » Nov 10th, '08, 16:55

I have the classic on it's way, and it should be arriving within a week or two. I'll post my thoughts somewhere around here. At that same time I'll be getting the Menghai Peacock sampler, and some other goodies.

So far, as far as Menghai 08 goes, the 8582 is always a classic, as is the 7542. I highly recommend the 7532 and the 0622, while the silver dayi and da yi hong have also been excellent. The 7582 is also pretty good, though I've never had an aged example. Overall I plan on getting tongs of these; 7532, da yi hong, 8582. I've heard amazing things about the classic, so that might get added to the list.
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Postby shogun89 » Nov 10th, '08, 19:01

Man, I wish I could just pick up a few tongs of something like that.
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Postby shogun89 » Nov 10th, '08, 23:04

TomVerlain wrote:well, I bit the bullet on the tong of 8582 ... seems to be a good deal.

BTW, though the ebay page says "more than 10 available", when you commit to buy, it shows a real number. (in this case was 39, now should be 31)

The picture scott has shows 802, though the listing says 801. Hopefully, I will get the 801, but if the 802 pictures are accurate, the leaves do show good aging already.

Since I get the "8th cake free", I really can keep the tong in virgin condition, and have samples from #8 ...


I asked him about the cake numbers and he said that with these particular cakes they are almost indistinguishable. Man, I sure do hope you like them, since I've been running my mouth about them. If you dont send them to me! :D
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Postby Trioxin » Nov 11th, '08, 03:57

thanks wrote:I have the classic on it's way, and it should be arriving within a week or two. I'll post my thoughts somewhere around here. At that same time I'll be getting the Menghai Peacock sampler, and some other goodies.

Please. i love your reviews.
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Postby Salsero » Nov 11th, '08, 10:17

Trioxin wrote: Please. i love your reviews


+1
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Postby thanks » Nov 12th, '08, 06:03

Well thanks guys, I really appreciate it. I really don't think I have a knack for this sort of thing, I just write how I feel about the tea. It's not always a specific description of flavors, and I hate documenting exact brewing times. Most of the time I try to hold a conversation of sorts with whatever tea I'm trying to become acquainted with. Once I gained that mindset brewing became a much more meditative and fun experience. I'm thinking of starting a blog soon to document my tasting notes of teas I own, or happen to come across to compliment my flickr page so that I can see my collection evolve in taste and appearance. That's why I named my flickr teajournaling.
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Postby thanks » Nov 15th, '08, 14:24

Well, my package came in a couple of days ago, and I was able to finish off a second session with this tea today.

Balanced! This tea is the best example of a balanced sheng. Almost all of the infusions carried the same characteristics; thick, honest yellow, slightly cloudy, super astringent, a fair amount of good bitterness, and sweetness to match, all the while having that classic (no pun intended) Menghai low tobacco bass going on in the background. There were honestly, at least 4 infusions where the good bitterness, astringency, the sweetness, mouthfeel, and Menghai tobacco all matched each other seamlessly, and if you weren't paying full attention the subtleties of the complex flavor might pass you by. You can tell the attention to detail when they created this blend as some infusions offer all of these things as a finely layered experience. Each characteristic taking turns with one another to show you the complexities, almost as if to say "here's all the parts so you can better recognize the whole". This is a tea to be slowly tasted over a long period of time to really get a feel for it. Fantastic sheng, definitely not for the "drink it now" crowd, but obviously meant to be an ager. I really think it's worth the price, and I will be ordering a tong. I can't wait until this tea gets some years on it. It makes no excuses for what it is, and is so refreshingly honest in it's presentation that one wonders why all young sheng can't match this quality coming out at this price point.

Of course, as always, these are my opinions, and not everyone will agree with me. Also, sorry for the lack of brewing pictures, but where I brew in my kitchen is the worst spot as far as lighting goes, and flashes with tea in general never seems to turn out right. I have some close ups of the actual cake though on my flickr if you're interested; http://flickr.com/photos/teajournaling/


Now if you'll excuse me, I've got a mountain of samples left still to go through. My thoughts on each peacock mountain should be up within the next week as well.
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Postby Salsero » Nov 15th, '08, 15:11

The cake you are talking about is the Menghai Da Jing Dian (Big Classic) 801 pictured on your site? It's hard to imagine not needing to have this thing after reading your description!

Certainly doesn't sound like the sweet and light "nice to drink now" cakes I have been enjoying lately.
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Postby thanks » Nov 15th, '08, 15:18

Salsero wrote:The cake you are talking about is the Menghai Da Jing Dian (Big Classic) 801 pictured on your site? It's hard to imagine not needing to have this thing after reading your description!

Certainly doesn't sound like the sweet and light "nice to drink now" cakes I have been enjoying lately.


Yes, the very same. Like I said it's my opinion, and it fits the bill as far as I'm concerned. Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on how you look at it) tea is very subjective, so if you buy a cake and you end up not liking it, I'll bet you'll like it some years from now, or the ever classic on this forum, at least "send it to me!".

I did use a good amount of leaf for both sessions as I really wanted to push it, but even after taking out half the leaves, and brewing it lighter, I still got some of these characteristics coming through. Overall, great, honest, strong upfront tea for a very reasonable price.
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