Perhaps the most unique pu'er I've tasted to date.
Year: Quoted at 2001...?
Producer: Not specified
Region: Yuxi City, Eshan. Hundreds of years old trees
Bought at: Seven Cups (Direct link to cake)
Leaf: See for yourself! It's green-yellow, as the name indicates. Leaves are very large and papery when dry, leathery when wet, much like the leaves of the 2005 raw baoyan brick. Huge stems are still attached. The leaves are not rolled, and this makes them difficult to detach. Dry, the leaves smell like long jing. Wet, they smell just like a Mexican herbal remedy called ruda (latin: Ruta graveolens), which is somewhere between mint and nori.
Infusion Parameters: 6g in 90ml gaiwan. 10s rinse, 60s+ rests, 15s, 15s, 15s, 20s, 25s, 45s, 60s, 120s. ~200 degree water.
THIS PU IS VERY STRANGE. It looks, tastes, smells unlike any other pu'er I've tasted.
Firstly, it is very oily in the mouth, like olive oil (which it also resembles when brewed). Because of this, it is very smooth.
Secondly, it tastes the way ruda smells. The smell of ruda and this tea remind me of my childhood when we used to jump over our neighbor's daisy bushes or cut their stalks and use them like whips in role play. The smell of those cut daisy stalks is about the smell and flavor of this tea. Add butter/oil on top of that and that's the flavor. No bitterness, and not the slightest hint of smoke.
Thirdly, the flavor never really changes across infusions. It does not develop anything new, except perhaps that it tends toward sweet at the end (in my tasting notes I have written, "like lemon but without the sweet or sour...?")
Lastly, it packs a qi punch like no other pu'er I've had. I went flush and sweat a lot drinking this tea, even when I was drinking it after it cooled, it would bring a rush of blood to my skin. Also, I usually have terrible circulation in my hands and feet, and they usually get cold, but they warmed up and have stayed warm since drinking the tea. Furthermore, I got extremely hungry after drinking this tea, even though I had recently eaten!
Overall: A unique tea, I don't know how to categorize it. I can hardly believe it's made with leaves from the same species of plant! Truly, this tea testifies to the expansive range of flavors, aromas, and "textures" that pu'er has to offer, and my ideation of the flavors of pu'er has been rebuilt to include it. Does the odd winter picking season explain all of this away?
Ageability: Too unique to tell. The heavy qi is a good omen, but the flavor was not strong, bitter, floral, or any of the usual flavors. It's also too unique to tell how old the cake is: if it's 5 years old, I couldn't fathom what it tasted like fresh-picked.
Would I buy this cake?: Well, I already did. I think that a sample of this tea would have been enough, but I am kind of glad that I get to see if anything happens to it over time.
(little buds growing on a bigger leaf)