Yunnan Black Tea


Fully oxidized tea leaves for a robust cup.

Yunnan Black Tea

Postby PolyhymnianMuse » Apr 13th, '09, 19:20

How does yunnan black tea compare to other black teas? Particularly anything from Yunnan Soucing is what I'm interested in. I know Dragon Tea house also has some interesting looking Yunnan blacks...

Are there any particular things that stand out or lack in Yunnan black teas? I suppose it's just something I'm going to have to try, but which to try... :twisted:
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Postby silverneedles » Apr 13th, '09, 21:25

yunnan black has its own particular flavor & maltiness (does not taste like assam malty or keemun). the good ones ofcourse have low astringency and do well if oversteeped. some of the "good" ones taste "creamy" & smooth. some people say its flavor or aroma is "peppery" but i dont know what that means, pepper pepper or green pepper -the vegetable?

there's a "regular" yunnan black which tastes ok, a little malty, more astringency and "regular black tea" taste (and mostly black tea leaf)

there's ones that add a little hint of smoky
- YS Premium Yunnan Black Gold (my note)

there's ones with the strong "malty"/honey? (i think these are mostly buds and "gold tips")
- YS Yunnan Pure Small Bud Black Tea Gold Tips (my note)
- Houde's Yunnan Gold “Jin Si” Golden Tips (my note)

*sorry about the self plug
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Postby Converted2Tea » Apr 15th, '09, 21:03

I absolutely love the Yunnan Gold from Adagio. It's my every day black tea. It has a hint of peppery taset to it that makes it so lively. When I first heard pepper and tea i was not all that excited but had to try it. I'm very glad that i did. LOVE it.
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Postby silvermage2000 » Apr 30th, '09, 20:39

Well I have tried adagio yunnan noir and I would have to say the taste is to different to my palate for me to enjoy it. Although I just have been drinking some swan sisters yunnan imperial and it tastes different then the other and is not to bad. I think to just try different ones and brands and what not.
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Postby brad4419 » Apr 30th, '09, 21:53

I also don't understand what "peppery" means with tea.

I have some Rishi golden yunnan that is very good but tastes completely different than I thought it would. I expected It to taste like pepper or something but its more malty.
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Postby spot52 » Apr 30th, '09, 22:12

The one I had most recently was very similar to keemun. I didn't get any peppery notes, but I did get some earthiness.
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Postby entropyembrace » Apr 30th, '09, 22:22

Yunnan black teas tend to have a very robust flavour with pepper, chocolate, floral and honey notes are common, though you probably wont find one with all of those at once.

The peppery when it comes to tea usually means a hint of taste similar to the spice pepper, not the vegetable.
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Postby joelbct » May 2nd, '09, 11:29

Try some yourself!

Generally, Yunnan can be robust/malty like an Assam, though usu. with less Tannin/bitterness. (Yunnan and Assam provinces are geographically close, and tea grown in both regions generally has high proportion of C. sinensis var assamica). Sometimes described as peppery, but this note is not always present.

There is a large variation in quality of Yunnan leaf. The more Golden Tips, the less bitter/more 'refined/balanced' taste and generally more prized... So the "all-gold" Golden Yunnan is usu the most expensive and tastiest....

And even among real Yunnan Gold, which is usually good, there occasionally appears really outstanding batches that you come across only once in a blue moon. Ito En had one in 2007 that was out of this world, couldn't find anything like it last year...

Image


FYI, as for Yunnan Sourcing pure-gold, the batch I got was good for the price, but not the best out there. Special Teas royal gold or competition grade had them beat, but costs more...
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Postby shardy53 » May 2nd, '09, 14:56

The term that comes to mind for me for Yunnan Gold is buttery. It is a very smooth tea with its own distinct flavor. I prefer to mix Yunnan Gold with Yunnan Noir or Jig. To me it is an afternoon tea. I need my Assam in the morning.

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Postby Rainy-Day » May 5th, '09, 04:45

Golden Yunnan is a tea that I both hate and love more than any other tea. When I open a new bag, it's perfectly sweet, complex and smoky. The last one I tried was from teaspring and the first pot was almost like drinking pure smoke, not like lapsang where smoke is muddy and intense but a very laidback, smooth smoke. [by the way, as a new user, I'm not supposed to post links but I'm not sure if it's ok to mention company names, I apologize if it's not ok]. One of the absolute best teas for me. But after the first pot, yunnan golds gradually lose their magic for me. It's happened so many times and this is the only unique tea which "gets worse with time" for me. I do close the tea bag very carefully, so I really have no explanation for this. With each successive pot the smoothness is lost, there's more and more astringency and sourness. Incredibly disappointing. This happened to Yunnan Golds from IPOT, Hou De, teaspring as I mentioned, and many different types of Yunnan Golds from harvests of different years.

I should gong-fu YG but I do gong-fu very rarely and I have so many oolongs and puerhs that I never got around to it. I will one day and post my experience here!
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Postby Janine » May 5th, '09, 13:43

Rainy Day, could this happen from your brewing vessel?

Maybe you could see if it also happens in a gaiwan or something else.

I do believe teas change over time in the environment of the home (or wherever they are used/stored), as I have posted elsewhere.
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Postby Rainy-Day » May 6th, '09, 04:30

Janine wrote:Rainy Day, could this happen from your brewing vessel?

Maybe you could see if it also happens in a gaiwan or something else.

I do believe teas change over time in the environment of the home (or wherever they are used/stored), as I have posted elsewhere.


No, I always use glass pots for all whites, greens, blacks... and I clean them after each brewing, inside and out. That's part of why I like glass pots - they're very easy to clean completely after wide variety of teas without one tea influencing the next..

I agree teas change but YG is the only one in my experience that changes so drastically and quickly. It doesn't make sense to me. If someone else said it happens to them I would not believe it or I'd think they're mucking up brewing time or using tap water or something.

As for me, I know that whites and some greens are very sensitive to any kind of mucking up and if I get them right all the time, this is about YG itself. Oh well.
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Postby joelbct » May 6th, '09, 21:58

Rainy-Day wrote:But after the first pot, yunnan golds gradually lose their magic for me. It's happened so many times and this is the only unique tea which "gets worse with time" for me.


That's odd, conventional wisdom is that Yunnan Gold is at its peak flavor about one year after harvest and processing...
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Postby Rainy-Day » May 7th, '09, 03:47

joelbct wrote:
Rainy-Day wrote:But after the first pot, yunnan golds gradually lose their magic for me. It's happened so many times and this is the only unique tea which "gets worse with time" for me.


That's odd, conventional wisdom is that Yunnan Gold is at its peak flavor about one year after harvest and processing...


Well, I don't think it's a matter of how much time passed after harvest, but after opening the bag. The only way I can rationalize it to myself (although it makes no sense) is that the leaves "infuse" with aromatic oils while vacuum packed in a bag for a long time and then each time you open the bag a little oxygen gets in and quickly ruins the flavour and aromatic oils fizzle out..

I would say first 3 pots are perfect, then next 3 pots are good, then next 3 pots are ok, and then it goes down the hill. :-(
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Postby Beidao » May 7th, '09, 04:55

I have had one peppery Yunnan Gold and when I drank it, I immediatly realized what peppery means, like in fresh grounded black pepper.

I have had one Yunnan Gold that I keept in a metal tin in a humid wardrobe for a year and it became sort of aged and very good. I've also had one Yunnan Gold that I keept in a plastic box in non-humid environment and after a month, it was impossible for me to drink it, the aroma and flavour was rotten and unpleasant.
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