2018 material/2020 pressing of supposedly Menghai material. (I say supposedly because, well… I wasn’t there)
1st impressions: Wet leaves at start smell of bakery notes and a bit of fruitiness. A fair bit of cedar woodiness (pencil shavings). After a rinse, the first brew is still kinda cloudy, but looks like it’ll clear up. Bright and sweet on the tip of the tongue with some good bitterness coming in on the back of the tongue. The cherry wood and background bitterness are the primary notes of the first run.
Drink down: The bitterness turned into a nice dark chocolate note. Overall the flavor it good for a dark choc/cherry wood type shu, but I wish it was filled out a bit more. Some nice spice notes are present in the middle steeps. The leaves are pretty chopped/broken up. There is some blending going on with different levels of fermentation and leaf size.
Final thoughts: At $22 for 357mg, this would make an excellent daily drinker. I may buy a cake to break up and mix with some chenpi I’m aging. The texture is decently oily. It brews out for an average number of times for shu (longer than most Moychay teas I’ve had). It is missing some of the creaminess or fully woodiness that I’d like, but its ok. Sweet up front with some bitterness.
Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Cedar, Cherry Wood, Dark Chocolate, Earth