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1998-2002 HK Dry Storage CNNP 8972 Cultural Revolution Raw Pu Erh Brick (15g)

1998-2002 HK Dry Storage CNNP 8972 Cultural Revolution Raw Pu Erh Brick (15g)

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Description

Updated: July 18th, 2021

I've had these bricks for several years now, and this tea is very much due for a retest since my storage environment is very active. I'll update the pictures and description shortly!

This 250g (when first sold) brick is from the same old school dealer as the 2004 Xiaguan 8653 cake I carry here at TeaLife. This brick was carefully aged to perfection and is a great example of dry storage done right. Since these are dry storage bricks, they would have arrived in Hong Kong after 2003, when a dry storage experiment in Hong Kong changed the pu erh world forever. This might indicate that these bricks are from the last year of production (2002).

Many 8972 bricks on the market aren't much good or are obviously fake. A lot of these fake bricks are stored and sold by Guangdong dealers, and then sold on to dealers in other countries. Watch out for impossibly low pricing on 'Hong Kong stored' teas from Guangdong and Taiwan. Some unscrupulous dealers also try to pass off tea like this right in Hong Kong.
 
These 8972 bricks are from a very reliable Hong Kong dealer and the tea is really excellent to drink. The leaf used for these bricks was from 1996. 

These bricks are known as Cultural Revolution bricks as they are made in the same style as the bricks made during the Cultural Revolution. That makes these bricks very collectible! I am always surprised by how clean these bricks are and how pleasant they taste. The liquor has aged date/plum notes that are commensurate with lengthy Hong Kong dry storage, and the leaves also have a light hint of camphor aroma to them. The camphor does not carry over into the cup, so if you are averse to camphor, not to worry.

As would be expected with brick tea, there is a lot of chopped leaf here. A hint of terroir that reminds me of Jingmai tea remains. The storage was light and well executed and this tea is really a pleasure to drink today! There is a light aroma of humid storage to the wet leaves.

In the cup, I detect black tea and citrus notes, which are often found in teas that have been through Southern Chinese dry storage, including my own home storage here in Hong Kong. Just a touch of bitterness remains. I believe this brick would have been bitter and undrinkable when new. The tea is now wonderful to drink and I highly recommend trying this tea out if you want to see what mild and very clean dry storage in this part of the world can do for a sheng pu erh brick! These are good value considering the age of the material and how pleasant the tea is to drink.

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