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2013 HK Natural Storage Xiaguan Nanzhao Tuo (200g)

2013 HK Natural Storage Xiaguan Nanzhao Tuo (200g)

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August 10th, 2020

I purchased two tongs (ten tuos) of this very popular recipe from a large-volume Xiaguan dealer in Kunming in April 2017: over three years of storage in my very own warehouse have remarkably transformed these tuos. The dry tuos smell sweet and enticing, and the tuos have loosened up nicely over the years: I was able to break off some to drink with ease, but the chunk then promptly fell apart! Since the tuo broke down into smaller chopped leaf (not dust), I chose to brew with shorter infusions. 

The rinsed leaf smelled sweet with just a hint of aged out smoke. In the cup, I got sweet wildflower and a lovely, pleasant black tea note. The liquor also had lots of umami, and this tea is already very nice to drink. I immediately knew this would be a better drinking experience (right now) than the 2017 454g Nanzhao cakes I have up on the site.

The aftertaste is longlasting: while wildflower dominant, there was also some distinct Xiaguan barley, which I get from their Jiaji tuos. The cha qi is calming and slightly trippy. These tuos were stored in the bamboo tongs in a carton, and I expect this tea to be much more aromatic after some time in a zippered, paper-covered thick plastic cake bag (provided with each tuo).

The second infusion was darker and more aromatic: sweet and with distinct wildflower character. There was some light astringency and bitterness as the liquor cooled, and I got a sweet floral flavor that reminded me of Taiwanese black sugar in the aftertaste. 

The third infusion was sweeter yet, and I got a hint of bitter orange peel in the liquor, which was a pleasant surprise. The barley note was also evident.

The fourth infusion brought out darker, more mysterious wildflower, but with less overall intensity, along with barley, and the umami was intense.

This tea packs quite the caffeine punch, so be careful with these tuos! I have nine tuos up for grabs.

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