A Tea Addict's Journal

Saturday tasting with friends

May 12, 2013 · 1 Comment

Another tea afternoon with some friends. This Saturday was spent mostly drinking Chenyuan Hao, although not exclusively. In reverse time order (and also the order in which we drank the teas)

1) Dayi 2012 Longyin (Dragon Seal). This thing is about 800 RMB now, for a cake that is barely a year old. It’s a silly price for something that is basically a few steps above your regular run of the mill big factory productions – it’s not that great, a little smokey, and well, you can hold on to this for ten years and see what happens. At that price point there are a lot of better teas. It’s probably great if you had gotten in at, say, 200 RMB, so you can sell it now for a handsome profit. Getting it now is rather dumb, I think.

2) 2007 Chenyuan Hao Yiwu King vs 2007 Wisteria Red Label

I had high hopes for the Chenyuan Hao Yiwu, which is supposedly a pretty small run and made with good material. We compared it with Zhou Yu’s Red Label from the same year, region unknown. The result is rather surprising – it was no contest. Zhou Yu wins hands down. The Yiwu, while decent, is quite commonplace – it’s not that hard to find teas like it (CGHT, for example). Zhou Yu’s tea, on the other hand, has some “special sauce” in it.

3) Chenyuan Hao 2006 Nannuo

This tea starts out really promising, nice taste and all, but somehow drops off rather quickly into a somewhat sour and thin tea that isn’t very good at all. I inquired afterwards about its price, and turns out it’s rather cheap for a small run 2006 tea. No wonder.

4) Chenyuan Hao 2001 Yiwu

Something is really weird with this tea. I’m not sure if it’s the storage or the original material, but it’s quite disappointing – given that it’s 12 years old and from a maker that does make nice teas. If you have a cake like this, it’s a waste of 12 years.

Categories: Teas
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1 response so far ↓

  • JakubT // May 12, 2013 at 3:20 pm | Reply

    Hi, indeed, the 2001 CYH is strange. I’m inclined to believe that the weirdness (especially in aroma of wet leaves) is due to storage, as two teas from Chawangshop, one from Mengku and one from Bulang, had the same sort of weirdnes – therefore, I think it probably won’t be linked to the area.

    I think that the lack of thickness, substance and some sharp sour overtones could be attributed to overly dry storage (why people like it so much, I can’t fathom). But there’s additional weirdness, the sort shared with the Chawangshop’s teas I mentioned above.

    It’s a pity, I think there are some good things about the tea… but it’s nowhere near how I imagine a reasonably aging 2001 tea.

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