2012 Baohongyinji Zhenwu Dadi 真武大地
Thank you to Patrick Gagnon for the opportunity to try this cake, one of the highlights among the very large number of Puerh cakes made by the Baohongyinji company. This Zhenwu Dadi is supposed to be gushu material from a state forest in Yishanmo — so, it makes sense that this has a more “single-origin” narrow profile rather than a full “blend” profile.
5 grams brewed in a 85ml Yixing. The dry leaf has a slight smoky incense aroma. Woody, sweet, very good rich aroma.
- Some Taiwan storage taste, somewhat like the YQH mintiness but more herbal and less intense. Some black tea notes, also indicating aggressive storage. Some bitterness right off the bat. Also, some roasty notes, similar to what I get from the younger Dayi 7542 like (the very good) batch 1203. This is not crazy given the age.
- Medium thickness. Quite clear bitterness. A darker Yiwu profile, more incense, and somewhat reminiscent of the 2010 Yiwu from BYH. Empty cup aroma is incense ash, very low resin, not pungent, more subtle incense ash.
- Astringency coating mouth surfaces. Not intense, but medium tannins. Uplift. Some frisson, some warmth in chest.
- Best steep so far, the storage has died down. Clearer signature of the tea, reminds me a bit of Guafengzhai in the herbal bittersweetness, but significantly more bitter and much more clear astringency. Herbal bitterness.
- Moreish now, especially because of increased acidity. Not plums, more persimmon like acidity and astringency. Like almost ripe but not quite ripe Hachiya persimmon.
- Stronger, but still mild taste now, singular, narrow, bitter, astringent. Definitely strikes as more of a single origin now. A Yiwu with plenty of bitterness and very low resin aspect, low pungency, not perfumey.
- Long steep is thicker, actually quite bitter, and quite astringent. No significant conversion to sweetness, but the bitterness does disappear after a moment. And no significant huigan. The frisson has become more pressure and alertness, intensity.
- Medium-High longevity, the late steeps are bitter. Cup residue is very slightly resinous but mostly silent with a bit of incense ash.
The initial steeps are less interesting especially because of the black tea notes, but the mid steeps are very active, with plenty of herbal bitterness and mouth-coating medium tannins. It had a mostly alerting and intense effect on me in this session, but in any case, the tea certainly is potent. I would be interested to know if any major resinous or pungent-perfume aspects ever show up in this tea, as it seems to be lacking these qualities. Also I wonder if the bitter content softens over time in a way that gives more sweetness in the aftertaste. 5.5