čtvrtek 14. února 2013

2012 YS Jia Bu

While I said I'd write about young Yiwus for a while, I'll start with a randomly picked YS's Jia Bu. I thought it was Yiwu; it is not, but it's reasonably close. It's not far from Xikong and Yibang, which are definitely among my favourite areas. 

Although the tea purportedly comes from small leaf varietal, it looks like a mid-leaf varietal to me... or it's maybe just large leaves from small leaf varietal:

The aroma of wet leaves is indeed somewhat similar to that of YS's Xikongs, while being slightly, but clearly different. I sense sugariness, dark grasiness, a bit of animality, a bit of floweriness and fruitiness (lighter, exotic fruit). As steepings go, the aroma of wet leave gets increasingly vegetal, not entirely in a positive way.

The liquor smells dark grassy to me. I think that among Yiwu-esque, this is the greenest one I know.

While the liquor is not thin (but thinner than most Yiwu/Xikong/Yibang), it feels/tastes very hollow and eroded. Many boring Yiwus are at least redeemed by pleasant sweetness. Well, this tea is not really sweet enough. I checked whether I got the spring or fall version, but I should have the spring one... 

Steepings 2-4 were reasonable... light sugariness, dark grassiness (someone could call a part of it sweet tobacco), but nothing too great I'm afraid. The not overly great taste is made worse by a really strong bitterness and medium-strong astringency. They rather go away after 5 or so steepings, but then, nothing much good is left anyway, the tea just gets weak. Even when I used less leaves and longer (or shorter) steepings, the bitterness was a real killer. And unlike some other bitternesses found in small-leaf varietal (e.g., most Jingmais), the bitterness does not transform into anything pleasant. It just stays and hurts... After a while, there appears a bit of lingering aroma suggesting that there could be a transformation to longer aftertaste, but in vain...nothing. Even after several experiments, I could not make this tea be anything better than a rather drinkable, although a boring one (via colder water, less leaves, longer steepings).

Now, this Jia Bu is supposed to come from ancient arbor. Unimpressive taste (well, it's worse than that here, but let's forget about it for a while) may be redeemed by features of the tea that are beside taste - cooling, overall body feel and qi. An example is Hailanghao's Yiwu. It was a surprise to find this Jia Bu absolutely silent. I detected no cooling at all, no energy, nothing. The tea was overall either aggressive and unpleasant (to me, at least) or boring and hollow.

Given the impressive price tag ($75 per 250g), I found this tea a rather horrible experience...

3 komentáře:

  1. We had very different experiences with this tea. I found it to have good body and be near to Guafengzhai in a lot of its characteristics. I had a very pleasant session with it and rather liked it!

    1. That is strange indeed... I agree that it has some features similar to Guafengzhai, but in the end, it seemed too far from good Guafengzhai to be good... And I rather could not get over the bitterness.

  2. Who knows? I have only had one session with it, I have some more and will try it again. I don't remember the bitterness being too overpowering, but that is the kind of thing that can vary from chunk to chunk or cake to cake.

    Either way, I appreciate other peoples' opinions/experiences for tea notes. Makes things interesting!