<Trundles off to try out his free puerhshop sample of the 2008 bingdao arbor.>
Man, that is one tightly compressed brick. The word 'rock' comes to mind, geese. I almost injured myself several times trying to break up the sample a bit more.
I brewed it in a gaiwan, boiling water, 10 second rinse and then let the hot leaves sit with the lid on for 3 minutes or so to try to get the compression to relax, which was sucessful.
1st infusion: It's a green puerh, that's for sure. Decent mouth feel, thick and smooth with no drying, which is not common for green puerh and me. Almost no huiguan
, maybe just a echo, but the echo is very persistent which is a good thing. hardly any smoke, not much bitterness. no off tastes at all. Not much flavor on the sides or back of the tounge, mostly center and front. Almost nothing in the throat and very little in the nose. Not sure about the complexity or richness. this reminds me of a gentler version of my 2005 dayi 250g toucha (which I absolutely love). Qi for me is a warm flush not unlike a good brandy. color of the soup is a strong yellow/green for something so young.
2nd: very quick infusion. some of the thick/smooth mouth feel has been replaced by a slight metallic/hot stone taste (not unpleasant) and a touch of drying. I'm less impressed by this infusion
3rd: 10s infusion. lid of the gaiwan has no fragrance at all. leaves have the typical green and smoke smell. The leaves have fully decompressed and are swirling in the cup, looks like fresh tea leave clippings. A little bitterness. the metallic note is gone replaced by a touch of sour that balances the bittter and sweet pretty well. ok mouth feel, same _almost_ lack of huigan. I have a feeling this is how the tea will taste the rest of the infusions. There is a lingering slippery smooth sweet coating on the center and tip of the tongue that is quite pleasant.
4th: 10s infusion. some very faint aroma has found it's way onto the lid.. bleh. About what I had expected otherwise. pleasant but unremarkable. I do really like that lingering slippery smooth sweet coating though, wish it was everywhere instead of the center/tip of tongue.
tails out about the 8th infusion, but is pretty much as the 4th just weaker.
I wouldn't buy this tea, my standards for green puerh are unfortunately spoiled by a few accidental finds locally and a couple of key samples from my tea teachers that have set me straight on what a green puerh can be. I don't know about the aging potential but the tea quality is there, although I suspect the rock like compression can't be good for quick aging. I suspect the price/quality ratio is at least in the ballpark, I usually just don't like most green puerh, I would drink this without complaining, the tea base was decent. I wish it had more complexity and more huigan, but like I said, I'm spoiled. The 2005 DaYi toucha from DHT I mentioned is a better tea IMO and about the same price/g.