2015 Biyun Hao Yibi Gushu

// Published September 26, 2018 by mgualt

The 2017 BYH Yibi was one of my favourite new shengs of that year, and it prompted me to co-curate, together with Pedro and Mr Chen (maker of BYH), this vertical tasting of BYH Yibi gushu productions from 2015-2018.  This review is of the 2015 tea in that flight.

From three tastings on Sep 22, 24, and 26 (2018).

The dry leaf has a strong sweet pungency, not as high pitched as the 2017 but it’s clearly the same kind of resinous sweet aroma.

  1. Initially soft and sweet, with a gentle astringency. The sweetness has an interesting depth, like a sugarcane rather than sugar.  After a few moments, quite intense facial waves, waves about the head and neck.  Soothing.  The ECA is super pungent resin, middle pitch and very attractive perfume.
  2. Thirst quenching, not green, not oolong, some roastiness can be detected, no smokiness.  Oily and concentrated but no sharp edges.  Beeswax. Very good aftertaste effect with a strong sweet aftertaste emerging. Also, a slight numbness or heaviness began in the face and neck, quite remarkable waves of relaxing energy.
  3. Deep yellow-orange and very thick. Mild up front, with increasing juiciness and salivation. good sweet aftertaste and mouthcoat.  Slow breathing, frisson and numbness, not tired, but unusually relaxed.  Heat. Heavy face.
  4. Extreme heaviness, relaxation
  5. Longer steep gives complex bitterness mixed with perfume. Slightly more astringency. Deep and thick, powerful but not off-putting. No joke.
  6. Another long steep, mouth activation buzzing, strong, noticeable astringency, face heat. Power, it is quite potent, must take longer breaks between steeps.
  7. Complex bitterness, strong perfume and concentration.

This tea has no shortage of concentrated resinous material, with pungent perfume and clear effects in the mouth throat and body. The body/mind effects are particularly strong for me, more than the 2017 for instance, and of a type that I really enjoy (relaxation but not lethargy) I am also a big fan of the processing here, with no green or oolong notes.  We see the youth in the slight  roastiness as well as the mild astringency in the long steeps, and the powerful bittersweetness.  Also this is one of those teas which will cement your teacups to the saucer if you leave it overnight… always a great sign for me.

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