Spring 2022 Hua Zhu Liang Zi

Tea type
Pu'erh Pu'erh (sheng) Blend
Pu Erh Tea
Apple Skins, Astringent, Bitter, Grapes, Sweet, Tangy
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Compressed, Loose Leaf
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Edit tea info Last updated by Marshall Weber
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  • “Why did I buy this sample? My wallet is trembling. This stuff is perfectly balanced, complex, and refined. It’s not just the high price (although I’m certainly not immune to that bias) that makes...” Read full tasting note

From Farmerleaf

April 2022, Ancient gardens, small and big trees picked together.

Punchy in the nose, mouth and body. Intense high mountain aroma combined with a good amount of bitterness and strong minerality.

This tea ticks all the boxes for a good Menghai Puerh. The high altitude of the gardens give the soup an intense fragrance, combined with a refreshing mouthfeel. The combination of short-lived bitterness and astringency gives the impression you’re sucking a rock. The soup behaves light in the mouth, like gasoline. It flows down the throat easily and leaves a trail of freshness in its path. Strong overall profile and good endurance.

This tea comes from Ba Meng village, located right below Hua Zhu Liang Zi, the highest peak of Xishuangbanna. The tea in this area grows between 1700m and 2300m, this is as high as you can get in the Southern Puerh tea producing regions.

The ancient tea gardens grow around the village and further up in the mountain. The whole area is inhabited by the Hani ethnic group. They have cultivated tea in Menghai area for centuries and settled in many of the now famous tea mountains: Mengsong, Nannuo, Pasha and Banzhang.

The leaves in this area are small, this could be due to natural selection that occured over the generations. At such a high altitude, frost is a concern for var Assamica, and the selection pressure would be severe for plants taken from lower grounds.

Mengsong area produces the most fragrant tea in Xishuangbanna. Yet, fragrance without a supporting bitterness is boring as hell to the Puerh tea drinker. Here, you get the full course. You’ll even feel highly energized after a session with this tea, if you can go to the end of the leaves before reaching tea drunkenness.

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1 Tasting Note

89 tasting notes

Why did I buy this sample? My wallet is trembling. This stuff is perfectly balanced, complex, and refined. It’s not just the high price (although I’m certainly not immune to that bias) that makes me like this tea. I’ve tried plenty of more expensive teas that I don’t like.

This is the last sample from my FL order and definitely the most impressive. This tea is from an ancient garden in the town Ba Meng, which is located directly below the highest peak in the Xishuangbanna mountain range and in all of the southern Puerh-producing regions. The tea definitely has that sophisticated air that high mountain teas tend to have.

According to the FL website and consistent with my own observations, these leaves are smaller than those in other samples. I believe this is somewhat common in mountainous areas. The closer you get in elevation to the treeline, the shorter trees get. In general, shorter trees in forests with higher, thicker canopies by necessity have larger leaves in order to collect more sunlight from the little bits that make it through the thick canopy. The inverse could contribute to smaller leaf size in these higher elevation trees…

Anyways, bitterness is trace with medium-low astringency. Longevity is 16+ infusions. Mouthfeel is generous, juicy, and full. Aftertaste is tangy-sweet and lasts many minutesssss.

Probably out of my budget to cake this at $0.60/g, but I might splurge after I finish the rest of the sample and weep tears of great loss.

Flavors: Apple Skins, Astringent, Bitter, Grapes, Sweet, Tangy

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