shah82 wrote:Mahei is not a weak tea. It's insipid, but it's not a weak tea. It should bend towards heavier honey flavors (that you'd find within Yiwu proper), and be less floral (also more towards honeysuckle rather than meadows) than Gaoshanzhai or LSD. Has more qi There can be caramel notes, and some leather. Issue here is pretty much like it is everywhere where the leaf is popular...you have a tough time getting a good example of Mahei. Shouldn't be too hard to get a decent plantation tea with decent hints, though. It tends to be a bit overrated because it's a very friendly taste, much in the way that Mengdai Bingdao is. However, a good one is more potent in qi and all that than other nearby Yiwu.
I have little certainly as to what Bingdao or Xigui is like other than that they are probably similar to the good Jinggu area teas I've had.
Tead Off wrote:Mahei is insipid? This is not my experience. I find trying to talk about each tea, in general terms, a futile practice. Too many variations within one region. Different processing, etc.
Aging Mahei? I have a 2010 and I've tried the 2007. The older one was farther along in aging and had that fermented gushu quality that I like. The younger is very tasty and developing along the same lines. Different makers. Not weak at all. Gets better during the session. Will it compete with LBZ, etc., probably not, but the costs are quite different and still very enjoyable tea.
shah82 wrote:When I say insipid, I mean that it's sweet flavors without much balance in other sorts of flavor like wood, bitterness, savoriness, etc. Not generally a fan of how Mahei ages, though it does do well enough, I suppose. Is the '99 Song Character'ed a Mahei? That's what I've always thought it was...
As for Bingdao, I have trouble thinking of it like cucumbers. I read so much about how it's supposed to be like rock sugar all the time...Cucumbers makes me think of something like Osanzhai or maybe Wisteria Tea House Taihe. Teas that I know are close to Bingdao, such as YS '10 Bangma has a pretty strong spicy/medicinal character to it. Of course, Bangma isn't that close, and things change pretty fast with distance.