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2020 Mingqian Xishuangbanna Qiaomu Raw Pu Erh Maocha (100g)

2020 Mingqian Xishuangbanna Qiaomu Raw Pu Erh Maocha (100g)

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July 10th, 2021

This tea is aging really well, and the leaves and liquor have darkened considerably since last year (I need to post some new pics). This maocha now has a lovely, sweet, peachy wildflower flavor. The bittersweet kuwei is something I get from good older tree material, so I'm happy to find it in this material. I even get some date flavor in the aftertaste, and the material still has a lovely calming effect on me. The original 'green' chlorophyll-like character from when it was fresh has long since dissipated. I think this tea has good aging prospects and I would love to see how the 2021 crop compares!

This maocha was picked in the second week of March and processed by hand. The exact origin of the material is a secret, but since the factory (registered with the Chinese government) is close to the border with Laos and Myanmar, this could be border tea. Regardless, this tea is great value and very pleasant to drink with a profoundly calming effect I only get from fresh young material. This is definitely the freshest sheng maocha I've ever had, and I expect it to age well in my warehouse!

The aroma of the dry leaf is sweet and complex, with sweet peach and apricot notes as well as more complex notes I can't identify. This tea is nice and clean, so one rinse is all you need. I brewed this strong (almost 12g/150ml) and was able to elicit some bitterness with a long first steep, but it was still very tolerable and pleasant. This material was processed well for sure. While it isn't as intensely flavorful as some of the other maocha I've been fortunate enough to try over the years, this is a very good daily drinker grade I expect to drink a lot of in 2020!

I get aromatics that remind me of Jingmai maocha. There is lovely ku wei here (sweetness that follows bitterness), and I detect notes that remind me of milk and fruit in the aftertaste as well, followed up with sweet jasmine-like floral notes (but only the most pleasant top notes I get from jasmine).

The calming effect from this tea hit me after the first sip. Many people don't feel the effects from pu erh tea quite as easily, but this may be something you develop over time. This tea is a great alternative to green tea for me, and I felt like going back to bed after the first cup!

There is a fair amount of residual chloropyll aroma in this material: I got some aromatics like asparagus or broccoli from the wet leaf, but they are very light and inoffensive. 

While this tea doesn't have the oomph I get from some young raw pu erh, this is dynamic material that changes considerably from infusion to infusion. It definitely isn't lacking in flavor, but it's perhaps a little lighter than I look for, so this is definitely a good daily drinker rather than something to surprise someone with!

This is a lovely tea at a great price point, and I'm really looking forward to aging some of this material to see how it develops over time!

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