Puehr Fave flavor notes...seeking your personal ultimate tea

One of the intentionally aged teas, Pu-Erh has a loyal following.


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Mar 21st, '13, 13:12
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Puehr Fave flavor notes...seeking your personal ultimate tea

by futurebird » Mar 21st, '13, 13:12

What sort of flavors do you find most desirable in older puerh? I'm not talking about what the markets says matters, but what do you personally love best?

For me there are a few things:

1. Positive mustiness. This is more a smell than a taste, though the taste aspect is rather bland, slightly bitter, and very smooth. The smell is very much like the smell of dusty books, it's an old smell and triggers many positive emotions for me. To me negative mustiness is more organic, the cleanness of this is what makes it enjoyable rather than gross.

2. Pepper. Not spicy pepers, but rather something like black pepper, this is always very faint and part of the first few sips, fading in later infusions. This is a tingle all over the inside of the mouth and even the throat.

3. Plums, this is more of a taste than a smell and round sweet taste, like, plum pudding.

4. The bark of a big tree in a old forest after a rain storm. This is similar to #1, but more organic without becoming gross-organic. I find this taste is more common an not too hard to find, yet I still really like it!

5. Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens. (just kidding, though making such a list reminds me of that song)

What are you most sought after flavor-notes?

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Mar 21st, '13, 15:08
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Re: favorite flavor notes... seeking your personal ultimate tea.

by TIM » Mar 21st, '13, 15:08

TALC. aka granny face powder.

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Re: favorite flavor notes... seeking your personal ultimate tea.

by debunix » Mar 21st, '13, 15:16

Walking through a redwood forest after rain--mossy earthy woody.

Sweetness, whether herbaceous/licorice/anise, or plummy/fruity.

Pepper/cinnamon/clove spicey to add interest.

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Re: favorite flavor notes... seeking your personal ultimate tea.

by futurebird » Mar 21st, '13, 15:48

TIM wrote:TALC. aka granny face powder.

I don't think I've experienced that. Though it sounds like something I could enjoy.

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Re: favorite flavor notes... seeking your personal ultimate tea.

by chado.my.teaway » Mar 21st, '13, 16:33

1st. Fruity notes like a peach. I'm talking about Darje FF. And forest fruit in Keemun.

2. Floral. Dong Ding, TGY

3. Pepper. Nepal Black FF.

ADD.

Ok. Now I see. We're talking about Pu.

In Pu i love that earthy notes. Like a wet forest.
Last edited by chado.my.teaway on Mar 21st, '13, 16:54, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Favorite flavor notes... seeking your personal ultimate tea.

by nada » Mar 21st, '13, 16:46

I find myself seeking sensations more than flavours. Of course flavours are important - there's got to be both, but it's the thick, oily & vibrant teas that excite me more than simply tasting some camphor or other flavours. Then of course it's got to have good qi, but that's another story.

It's these extra layers that bring a tea into a different level for me.

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Re: Puehr Fave flavor notes...seeking your personal ultimate tea

by shah82 » Mar 21st, '13, 18:18

I'm pretty omnivorous about flavors. What matters is that the flavor and aroma keeps the attention.

I suppose what really gets me happy are the teas with a great deal of natural sweetness.

What also can be awesome is a strong, long, aftertaste/aroma.

Say, Nada, what do you think of the part of the green tea of the day thread that talks about relationship of fertilizer and thickness of the soup in Japanese senchas. It made me think a bit about TGY cultivation, and how cultivation practices could impact the quality of puerh we drink--wondering if the old tree you've gotten have been mulched, so to speak...Some tea bushes seem to give unappealing soup without fertilizer (TGY, Sencha) and other tea bushes seem to do just fine on rock (Wuyi, high mountain lincangs), delivering all the body you could ask for. Whew! Just typing this up and thinking about this (like the way I do about fig cultivation) is pretty tough, because it seems to really boil down to developmental genetics and relationship to feedstock.

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Re: Puehr Fave flavor notes...seeking your personal ultimate tea

by fdrx » Mar 21st, '13, 18:56

I like big huigan effects/transformation in throat (like good jingmai / banzhang), salivation/oil and qi... but i don't know much about very old pu

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Re: Puehr Fave flavor notes...seeking your personal ultimate tea

by gingkoseto » Mar 21st, '13, 20:33

I like the light honey type of flavor very much. But to me, what's unique about some good puerh is the lingering flavor a few minutes after a sip and the sticky texture of the liquor.
And for me, dry storage aroma only :D

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Re: Favorite flavor notes... seeking your personal ultimate tea.

by TwoDog2 » Mar 21st, '13, 21:23

nada wrote:thick, oily & vibrant
Good choices, nada.

If you are into aging teas or drinking older tea, sensations matter more than flavors. Most flavors in puer are transient.

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Re: Puehr Fave flavor notes...seeking your personal ultimate tea

by Tead Off » Mar 22nd, '13, 00:14

fdrx wrote:I like big huigan effects/transformation in throat (like good jingmai / banzhang), salivation/oil and qi... but i don't know much about very old pu
gingkoseto wrote: And for me, dry storage aroma only :D
shah82 wrote: What matters is that the flavor and aroma keeps the attention.
Not much to add to what these posters have said.

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Re: Puehr Fave flavor notes...seeking your personal ultimate tea

by theredbaron » Mar 22nd, '13, 01:28

It's very difficult for me to describe taste, especially what i like, but i'll try.
I like it when the taste is complex, and has depth, with a somewhat medicinal, camphoric quality, yet still should be clean, and sharp, not muddled. The taste should not just linger on the tongue, but should fill my nasal cavities in an upward motion straight away. I dunno if i can make myself understandable here.
I do not like the musty and even slightly moldy taste of (for me) too wet stored Pu Erh's - that puts me off.

What i do not like is when at times i drink old Pu Erh's which are round and flat, almost like a Shu Pu Erh, easy to drink, but no depth or complexities.

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Re: Puehr Fave flavor notes...seeking your personal ultimate tea

by TwoDog2 » Mar 22nd, '13, 04:10

Tead Off wrote:
gingkoseto wrote: And for me, dry storage aroma only :D
Is this something that most people agree with in this thread?

"Dry storage" is only ideal for me if it is on the humid side of dry.

I am rarely very enthralled with tea stored in very dry conditions.

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Re: Puehr Fave flavor notes...seeking your personal ultimate tea

by Tead Off » Mar 22nd, '13, 05:12

TwoDog2 wrote:
Tead Off wrote:
gingkoseto wrote: And for me, dry storage aroma only :D
Is this something that most people agree with in this thread?

"Dry storage" is only ideal for me if it is on the humid side of dry.

I am rarely very enthralled with tea stored in very dry conditions.
This is hard to answer as to what is too wet for me. I really prefer tea that doesn't smell and taste like mildew. Perhaps a hint of it would be tolerable if there is also something else going on in the tea that I could taste or feel.

As an example, I drank a tea last night, 2002 Da Xue Shan which was wet stored. It wasn't as wet as some I've gotten from EOT for example, but there it was from beginning to end. The tea was smooth as silk, the wetness mild and tolerable. But what really attracted me was the feeling I get when I drink this tea. It just feels good to drink it and that is stronger than the wet smell for me. OTOH, my wife stopped drinking it after a few cups saying this is too musty for me. It's a very subjective call on what drinkers like.

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Re: Puehr Fave flavor notes...seeking your personal ultimate tea

by JakubT » Mar 22nd, '13, 05:14

TwoDog2 wrote:
Tead Off wrote:
gingkoseto wrote: And for me, dry storage aroma only :D
Is this something that most people agree with in this thread?
Dry storage aroma as that of '88 Qing Bing, 8653 (dry stored) from EoT, or 2001 Yuanyexiang - yes. Dry storage as of 95 or 2001 from Finepuer (and many, many other teas are like that) - absolutely not. It may be fine for a couple of years and with some regions (Jingmai?), but after 10 years, it's a waste of tea.

I think that the whole idea of dry storage got perversely twisted by some vendors who live/store their tea in excessively dry environment and they market their mummification-ultra-dry-storage as a feature, while it is a bug. As some of these vendors probably never had a quantity of any normal aged tea, they even do not miss the good feeling/qi that reasonably stored tea offers.

And to the original topic of this thread:
I don't primarily look for tastes in aged pu (if I look for tastes, I look to 8-12 years old teas), but when I do, I appreciate clean aged nuttiness and the aroma of a forest floor after light spring rain. Cinnamon or plum powidl are also pleasant things.

And what I'm always looking for in aged pu is that long-term aftertaste of surprisingly fresh plums (It's called mei zi, I believe?); it often appears in 7542s. But there are many more cakes with that property.

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