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2018 Jay's HK Storage Xiaguan Fuxing Bangdong Gushu Raw Pu Erh Tuo (100g)

2018 Jay's HK Storage Xiaguan Fuxing Bangdong Gushu Raw Pu Erh Tuo (100g)

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Description

May 21st, 2021

I purchased these tuos in June 2019, and have aged them in my own warehouse ever since after Lobster in Germany (danke) suggested I try aging some of these tuos. I'm glad I did as this has turned out to be quite a nice tea in the cup!

These tuos were pressed with Bangdong Daxueshan material that was aged for six years before pressing: I believe some of Xiaguan's own plantation material was blended into these tuos as the character definitely has some classic Xiaguan traits. This is definitely a different tea in the cup from a standard Xiaguan offering. however. I tried this tea without looking at the details which I believe made for a more balanced view of what this tea has to offer today.

These tuos were stored in the original boxes, so there might be a significant expansion and rebound in aroma and flavor if these tuos spend some time in plastic in a milder climate. My warehouse is a very active environment and I've noticed some teas rebound rather dramatically once moved out of the warehouse for several months. This tea is already great to drink, however, and is a standout among a sea of modern Xiaguan offerings I feel are mostly just average daily drinkers after aging for a few years.

The dry tuo smells sweet and inviting with distinctive Xiaguan Dali plantation aroma to it as well. The tuo has loosened up beautifully in storage and was very easy to pick apart once I got the pick into the rim. The smoke aroma in this sample tuo was light. The rinse smelled very sweet and fruity with light florals, which was a surprise. I noted that the aroma reminded me of the Flintstones' vitamins I chewed as a kid (sweet mixed fruit)! The leaves also smelled like this after the first infusion.

In the cup, this is a full tasting tea, which is testament to the quality of the material used in these tuos. Gushu material often has that 'full' flavor and mouthfeel that plantation material can never replicate. There is a little smoke in the cup as well, but it's definitely not dominant here. The tea has an instant calming effect and a light cantaloupe aftertaste from the oxidation of the material. This is a nicely balanced tea already, which was a pleasant surprise. The liquor has pleasant bitterness and a nice finish in the throat, which are all hallmarks of good material (and perhaps the gushu material used here).

The leaves are less choppy than usual for Xiaguan's productions, but still chopped and blended for greater uniformity. Even the tippier material here is a little chopped, but not as much as with standard Xiaguan plantation material.

There is also some dissociative cha qi here, which was a pleasant surprise. I feel this tea was worth the price paid and is worth getting more of, which is not something I would say about a lot of modern Xiaguan productions (many seem to fall flat after a few years of aging).

There is more smoke in the second infusion, but it is still balanced. I believe the smoke is from Dali plantation material in these tuos. While this is an interesting tea, the XIaguan plantation material's flavor does dominate here, although the gushu adds interesting fullness to the liquor. This is certainly better than most Xiaguan plantation material productions if you like a smoother, fuller sheng, however, and I was quite happy to drink this, but I do wish the gushu material's character was more dominant. This is a smooth, pleasant tea, so it certainly will appeal to those who like to drink sheng of this type, and I think this tea will be very interesting with more age on it (but less aromatically complex). There is a fruitiness here that does stand out as distinct which makes this more interesting than a standard Xiaguan plantation material production. coupled with the fullness of flavor on the palate here.

The third infusion is smokier, but again, well balanced. There is almost no astringency here, which I believe is due to the smoothness of the gushu material and the six years of aging as maocha (and then two years with me)!

This is a nicely aged tea now with good fullness and some unique flavor, coupled with balanced Xiaguan plantation material character that fortunately doesn't dominate too much and steal the show. This is already a great tea and I believe it will be amazing down the line as it mellows out further. I believe this is one of the better blended gushu productions I've seen from Xiaguan so far.

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