2001 Zhongcha yellow mark

// Published November 7, 2017 by mgualt

2001 Zhongcha yellow mark
Several sessions October 2017

This is a clean, smokeless, dry Taiwan storage cake with no geosmin.  Damp and wet leaves have some mustiness, some sweetness and leather.  The wet leaves  have similarity to smell of early YQH. Dark jam, herbal sweetness. Wash is clean and very clear, light orange and a pleasant aroma.

  1. Fresh, sweet aftertaste, orange, and clean.
  2. Quite thick, dark orange. Some bitterness shows, and some astringency. Lots of the strength coating on the roof of mouth. Emergent aroma is quite pleasant, and a clear wave of frisson. Quite good and uplifting!
  3. Relaxing, strong mouthfeel, tannins. Sweet but a restrained sweetness. Pleasant emergent aroma clear again. Uplifting qi from center of body behind lower ribs. Uplift and frisson.  Long huigan and residual tastiness.
  4. More sweetness now. Very good flavour intensity. At the same time, more bitterness.
  5. Slightly more orange. Heat on the forehead now. Uplift.
  6. Each cup refreshes the frisson. Bitter, a stiff taste now but interesting, complex bitterness.
  7. Aftertaste and the depression coating on tongue is good.
  8. Still lots of colour as steep time increases.Uplifting and alerting. Sustained elevated qi. No Joke.
  9. Later steeps are more bitter. Striking qi, reminding me of the 2003 7542 purple Dayi, really big qi now even though quite bitter at the longer steeps.  Probably I am steeping a bit too long, making it quite strong.
  10. Accumulating strong qi, waves of excitement and frisson, lasting for several hours.

Quite remarkable tea in terms of intensity of experience. Wonderful long-lasting and unsubtle uplifting effect, very thick base of taste and aroma, complex bitterness mixed with restrained sweetness, and no off notes.  My only criticism would be that there is sometimes, in the more bitter steeps, a metallic aftertaste, and the material is variable, some parts of the cake have pulverized material while other parts look great. With no investment value or hipster cachet, this is an incredibly good value for drinkers in comparison to fancy brands and/or new tea.

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