2017 Dayi 7542, hot vs. cold storage
I stored two cakes of 7542 for almost three years: both in mylar, both without added humidity. The only diference is that one (labeled H and on the left) experienced 32C and the other (labeled C and on the right) experienced room temperature, which is around 23C.
Heated tea is on the left. The dry leaf of the unheated tea had a higher pitched pungency.
- Soup looks the same to my eye. Heated tea is slightly sweeter. Both teas are green but the unheated was significantly harsher especially with bitterness and astringency. Both have good empty cup aroma but the unheated tea had a stronger one.
- Heated tea still green, hay, quite astringent. Unheated is very green, much more green and acrid and roasty.
- Now I see a slightly darker soup on the left. Heated tea is much tastier, with a lot of juiciness, plumminess, unripe plums. Unheated is harsh green tea taste, good perfume resin, both have a touch of woody incense and there is a long huigan.
- Darker aroma on heated tea. No question the heated tea is significantly sweeter. Unheated has a dark green grassiness and strong astringency. The astringency melts after about a minute. Strong uplift at this point. A bit jittery.
- Heated tea quite bitter, unheated also bitter, but the intensity of the sweet aftertaste is greater for the heated tea. Definitely the heated tea is less bitter, which is interesting. Bitterness is either turning into something else or being masked by sweetness.
- Flash steep is noticeably smoother on the heated tea but both are thin and bitter.
The story is quite straightforward. The 1701-7542 is a strong tea with punchy bitterness and medium astringency. The bitterness melts away and there is a decently strong sweet aftertaste. The heated version is sweeter, has more intense huigan, has a more honeyed floral profile, whereas the unheated has a high pitched perfume that I remember from the first taste of this tea, it is significantly more bitter and less sweet. The visual difference after 3 years of a 10C temperature difference is minimal, but is clearest in the spent leaves. It’s hard to say if this batch of 7542 will turn into a good mid aged tea, since it is still too young, but in the heated version I started to see that juicy plummy acidity which I was looking for. this is also a good example of the kind of harshness and bitterness you get with young taidicha — it’s not pleasant to drink at the moment, heated or not.
For an interesting comparison, see how the leaves evolve over time: