Yunnan sourcings Yancha

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Apr 10th, '16, 11:45
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Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by gasninja » Apr 10th, '16, 11:45

I don't normally drink Yancha that much. When I do it tends to be higher end Zheng yan teas that are not affordable to drink regularly. I am ordering some spring greens from Yunnan sourcing and wanted to pick up a few different Yanchas that don't cost a upwards of dollar a gram. Does anyone have any recommendations .

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Apr 10th, '16, 20:43
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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by jayinhk » Apr 10th, '16, 20:43

gasninja wrote:I don't normally drink Yancha that much. When I do it tends to be higher end Zheng yan teas that are not affordable to drink regularly. I am ordering some spring greens from Yunnan sourcing and wanted to pick up a few different Yanchas that don't cost a upwards of dollar a gram. Does anyone have any recommendations .
Yes, buy a small yancha teapot if you don't already have one! :) 65ml works fine with yancha and helps your stash last longer. I haven't tried any YS yancha yet, however, so I'll be interested in your thoughts.

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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by gasninja » Apr 10th, '16, 21:38

I have several different Yancha yixings. A nice 90 ml lu ni pot that I use for Higher fired Wu Yi, 100 ml zhuni pot and a 1970s please drink chinese oolong pot . I am better equipped with pots than tea at the moment . I had a big stock pile of Yancha built up but I have slowly drank through almost all of it

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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by jayinhk » Apr 10th, '16, 23:26

Gotcha. I tend to buy yancha in HK or from Taobao myself, but YS and Chawang do have some interesting teas. I'd buy 50g of each of the ones that interested me. I almost did just that a few days ago, but I have 500g of charcoal baked dancong coming in. I'm trying to be good! ;)

Apr 11th, '16, 12:51
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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by benm3 » Apr 11th, '16, 12:51

I would think that a small teapot like a 65ml one might be too small for yan cha. It's just so hard to get the leaves into such a small pot. I would recommend a slightly larger one (100 or 120ml), and also I suggest a pot with a wide lid. I also think that as with most teas, a gaiwan is always a good choice. I actually brew my yan cha with flash infusions in a thin-walled gaiwan. I know a lot of people prefer thick-walled vessels, but I find thin-walled vessels are much better for flash infusions- the clay or porcelain takes away less heat from the boiling water thus contributing to an overall hotter brew. I think this doesn't work as well for longer infusions, in which case a thicker brewing vessel might be preferable. I haven't tried yunnan sourcing's yan cha, but I can recommend cha ceremony as a source for decently priced and decent tasting yan cha.

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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by jayinhk » Apr 11th, '16, 12:56

benm3 wrote:I would think that a small teapot like a 65ml one might be too small for yan cha. It's just so hard to get the leaves into such a small pot. I would recommend a slightly larger one (100 or 120ml), and also I suggest a pot with a wide lid. I also think that as with most teas, a gaiwan is always a good choice. I actually brew my yan cha with flash infusions in a thin-walled gaiwan. I know a lot of people prefer thick-walled vessels, but I find thin-walled vessels are much better for flash infusions- the clay or porcelain takes away less heat from the boiling water thus contributing to an overall hotter brew. I think this doesn't work as well for longer infusions, in which case a thicker brewing vessel might be preferable. I haven't tried yunnan sourcing's yan cha, but I can recommend cha ceremony as a source for decently priced and decent tasting yan cha.
For a long time I used a 110ml pot for yancha, but I now prefer smaller pots since I can drink several teas a day that way! Yes, sometimes it can be tricky getting longer leaves in and I have to snap a few of the exceptionally long ones.

I also prefer thinner walled pots for yancha. I only use thicker walled pots for shu pu erh really. If you're preheating a thicker vessel, though, it should retain heat longer, and keep the heat up. I prefer not cooking my leaves, though, which is why I prefer smaller, thinner pots for yancha. They cool faster.

Apr 11th, '16, 14:34
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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by BW85 » Apr 11th, '16, 14:34

jayinhk wrote:
benm3 wrote:I would think that a small teapot like a 65ml one might be too small for yan cha. It's just so hard to get the leaves into such a small pot. I would recommend a slightly larger one (100 or 120ml), and also I suggest a pot with a wide lid. I also think that as with most teas, a gaiwan is always a good choice. I actually brew my yan cha with flash infusions in a thin-walled gaiwan. I know a lot of people prefer thick-walled vessels, but I find thin-walled vessels are much better for flash infusions- the clay or porcelain takes away less heat from the boiling water thus contributing to an overall hotter brew. I think this doesn't work as well for longer infusions, in which case a thicker brewing vessel might be preferable. I haven't tried yunnan sourcing's yan cha, but I can recommend cha ceremony as a source for decently priced and decent tasting yan cha.
For a long time I used a 110ml pot for yancha, but I now prefer smaller pots since I can drink several teas a day that way! Yes, sometimes it can be tricky getting longer leaves in and I have to snap a few of the exceptionally long ones.

I also prefer thinner walled pots for yancha. I only use thicker walled pots for shu pu erh really. If you're preheating a thicker vessel, though, it should retain heat longer, and keep the heat up. I prefer not cooking my leaves, though, which is why I prefer smaller, thinner pots for yancha. They cool faster.
I also prefer small 60-75ml pots for yancha. More concentrated brew and without getting a full belly from too much tea

Apr 11th, '16, 20:34
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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by benm3 » Apr 11th, '16, 20:34

I completely understand the idea behind smaller teapots, and I genuinely agree. But with yan cha and feng huang dan cong, I find that a vessel large enough to allow the tea leaves to unfurl fully is the best. I wish I could pack fine yan cha into a 60ml pot or gaiwan, but I find that makes me break the leaves and prevents them from fully and naturally unfurling. But I am also always learning and might soon change my ways :)

Oh and once again, chaceremony.com has a good selection of nice yan cha ranging from inexpensive to above average. I recommend their "zhengyan Shui Xian yan cha" as a very thick,balanced, and well roasted yan cha. The price is great too. Seriously, I think you will be impressed.

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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by BW85 » Apr 12th, '16, 17:13

benm3 wrote:I completely understand the idea behind smaller teapots, and I genuinely agree. But with yan cha and feng huang dan cong, I find that a vessel large enough to allow the tea leaves to unfurl fully is the best. I wish I could pack fine yan cha into a 60ml pot or gaiwan, but I find that makes me break the leaves and prevents them from fully and naturally unfurling. But I am also always learning and might soon change my ways :)

.
If I put 6-8 grams of yancha in a 60ml pot, with equal parameters I'd put at least 12+ grams in a 120ml pot, in which case the leave are still going to be just as crowded. The benefit would come I guess if you lowered the leaf/water ratio... Which I do on occasion.
And in regards to big leaves in a small pot, part of traditional chaozhou brewing of oolongs is intentionally breaking/crushing a portion of the leaves

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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by jayinhk » Apr 12th, '16, 20:16

BW85 wrote:
benm3 wrote:I completely understand the idea behind smaller teapots, and I genuinely agree. But with yan cha and feng huang dan cong, I find that a vessel large enough to allow the tea leaves to unfurl fully is the best. I wish I could pack fine yan cha into a 60ml pot or gaiwan, but I find that makes me break the leaves and prevents them from fully and naturally unfurling. But I am also always learning and might soon change my ways :)

.
If I put 6-8 grams of yancha in a 60ml pot, with equal parameters I'd put at least 12+ grams in a 120ml pot, in which case the leave are still going to be just as crowded. The benefit would come I guess if you lowered the leaf/water ratio... Which I do on occasion.
And in regards to big leaves in a small pot, part of traditional chaozhou brewing of oolongs is intentionally breaking/crushing a portion of the leaves
I was thinking about the tea gall aspect, but didn't mention it. Yes, creating a tea gall is very much part of Chaozhou-style gongfu cha, where the leaf is crushed. From our very own Kyarazen (didn't know he was Teochew)!

http://www.kyarazen.com/chaozhou-gongfu-tea/

Apr 12th, '16, 22:03
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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by benm3 » Apr 12th, '16, 22:03

I am well aware of the method of stuffing the pot to the gills with yan cha and brewing flash infusions. I just don't brew that way anymore. I really do think that you get more out of the leaves when they have room to unfurl more fully. I find this especially true with high end yan cha. I never measure with a scale or anything, but I would guess that I use about 7-8 grams in a 100 ml gaiwan. That is more than adequate to get a rich, thick brew from using flash infusions for the first few brews- but the benefits of the extra space really show themselves in the later and longer infusions. I just think you will get more nuance out of the tea. I find the pack it in a pot and crush it up a bit method to produce less change in flavor and texture over time, and I just hate to break tea leaves which can easily cost between $1-2 per gram (sometimes more!).

Many years ago Imen Shan encouraged me to brew my dan cong in large gaiwans (200ml) for long infusions. I am thankful to her for opening my eyes to this overall method, and I have found the guiding principle (with some adjustments and obvious exceptions) to have excellent results with yan cha.

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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by jayinhk » Apr 13th, '16, 00:17

In my experience, I've had better brews with crushed leaf and shorter infusions, and from smaller pots. I've actually gone the other way. I used to use larger pots (even 170 ml pin zini for high roast teas), longer infusions and didn't crush my leaf often. I'm also having more success with flash infusions of dancong from my gaiwan or pots than longer ones. Then again, I am constructing my gall carefully in the case of TGY and yancha and surrounding the crushed tea with whole leaf, rather than just crushing haphazardly. I first learned of this method by watching a Fujianese tea dealer preparing teapots full of tieguanyin and shuixian he'd roasted himself when I was completely new to high roast oolong tea. I find the gall method produces a much more flavorful cup and my brews stay interesting for much longer. In the end, as long as we're happy with our tea and our results, we should brew in the manner that suits us best!

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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by benm3 » Apr 13th, '16, 10:36

jayinhk wrote:In my experience, I've had better brews with crushed leaf and shorter infusions, and from smaller pots. I've actually gone the other way. I used to use larger pots (even 170 ml pin zini for high roast teas), longer infusions and didn't crush my leaf often. I'm also having more success with flash infusions of dancong from my gaiwan or pots than longer ones. Then again, I am constructing my gall carefully in the case of TGY and yancha and surrounding the crushed tea with whole leaf, rather than just crushing haphazardly. I first learned of this method by watching a Fujianese tea dealer preparing teapots full of tieguanyin and shuixian he'd roasted himself when I was completely new to high roast oolong tea. I find the gall method produces a much more flavorful cup and my brews stay interesting for much longer. In the end, as long as we're happy with our tea and our results, we should brew in the manner that suits us best!

I agree that there really shouldn't be any rules about brewing tea. The method you use produces thick, rich brews- though I have found it almost impossible not to overbrew with this method, especially when using a teapot. I can pour more quickly with a gaiwan, but even then, my first few infusions tend to be too astringent for my tastes. Obviously, if I had better control I could likely avoid this- I have just personally found myself to have better success with slightly less leaf in slightly larger pots. And as for dan cong, I am a full convert to the method of using maybe 2 grams in a 200ml gaiwan. It is my understanding that this is actually a known and respected method among tea aficionados in the the chaozhou region today. Obviously plenty of people will stuff their pots with dan cong and use the method you describe, but others appreciate the different textures and flavors from the less leaf/bigger pot method. Tea is fun: rules are not :)

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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by jayinhk » Apr 13th, '16, 11:47

benm3 wrote:
jayinhk wrote:In my experience, I've had better brews with crushed leaf and shorter infusions, and from smaller pots. I've actually gone the other way. I used to use larger pots (even 170 ml pin zini for high roast teas), longer infusions and didn't crush my leaf often. I'm also having more success with flash infusions of dancong from my gaiwan or pots than longer ones. Then again, I am constructing my gall carefully in the case of TGY and yancha and surrounding the crushed tea with whole leaf, rather than just crushing haphazardly. I first learned of this method by watching a Fujianese tea dealer preparing teapots full of tieguanyin and shuixian he'd roasted himself when I was completely new to high roast oolong tea. I find the gall method produces a much more flavorful cup and my brews stay interesting for much longer. In the end, as long as we're happy with our tea and our results, we should brew in the manner that suits us best!

I agree that there really shouldn't be any rules about brewing tea. The method you use produces thick, rich brews- though I have found it almost impossible not to overbrew with this method, especially when using a teapot. I can pour more quickly with a gaiwan, but even then, my first few infusions tend to be too astringent for my tastes. Obviously, if I had better control I could likely avoid this- I have just personally found myself to have better success with slightly less leaf in slightly larger pots. And as for dan cong, I am a full convert to the method of using maybe 2 grams in a 200ml gaiwan. It is my understanding that this is actually a known and respected method among tea aficionados in the the chaozhou region today. Obviously plenty of people will stuff their pots with dan cong and use the method you describe, but others appreciate the different textures and flavors from the less leaf/bigger pot method. Tea is fun: rules are not :)
I actually brew 5-7g a time of dancong in a 100ml gaiwan and brew flash infusions--if you've read Imen's articles, this is pretty common in Chaozhou, and some use up to 9g for that volume! She said she couldn't handle much of that, but it was the way the guys up there drink their tea. I'll try it your way next, although my biggest gaiwan is around 150ml. I get no astringency with my method, but I pour fast and my gaiwan is extremely thin. My scalded middle finger and thumb are testament to that!

Interestingly I've seen the Teochew guys at the noodle place I go to most often use a HUGE (one liter + ?) Chaozhou pot and drink nuclear green tieguanyin in it. These guys are about as Teochew as it gets, too, and are first generation immigrants to Hong Kong, so the 2g in 100ml method might actually be something that is done up there, too, side by side with the packed gaiwan method.

Apr 19th, '16, 15:33
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Re: Yunnan sourcings Yancha

by Haddemall » Apr 19th, '16, 15:33

Hi Benm3,

I'd like to try your 2g tea to 200ml water method. For how long to you infuse the leaves......

Thanks for your input.

Best,

Haddemall

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