2012 Denong Lao Banzhang via Bana Tea — TeaDB James InBetweenIsode Episode #48

Denong’s invigorating 2012 Lao Banzhang purportedly from one of the most famous and most expensive tea mountains.


4 responses to “2012 Denong Lao Banzhang via Bana Tea — TeaDB James InBetweenIsode Episode #48”

  1. This is one video I watched as soon as I saw posted, because I was always fairly interested in that tea.

    How does your enjoyment differ from the ’06 XZH Black Wrapper?

    Some reminders:
    1) These Banatea 100g bricks have been with chopped leaves, given my experience with the Nannuo and Jingmai. This is going to enhance bitterness, caffeine, and resulting aftertastes if there are any.

    2) LBZ has never really been a taste with a strong character to it. It’s a little like what Bingdao is, except that it does have more character than that. Sweet leaf LBZ (as opposed to other banzhangs, bulangs) will also perform relatively poorly in competitive tastings.

    3) Not that it is necessarily an issue with this one, but be careful about feeling that a young tea has qi. There are a number of teas, notably not-the-best Jingmai, that has qi as a young tea, but it fades out as it ages. Even with good tea, qi generally will back off, and becomes more pleasing textural and complex a sensation rather than knock you over the side.

    I would hope to hear from you one day about the ChenShengHao LBZ from ’08/’09/’12. And the famous bok choys as well. We have very few reviews on these classic teas in the West–french reviews of CSH, Hobbes’ review of ’02 Chawang, and a short review of the bok choy sold long ago at Houde from William Yardley.

    • Hi shah,

      Frankly, I enjoy the Black Wrapper much more, especially the qi. Not necessarily a huge knock on this tea, but that tea gave me a few really fantastic sessions. By my estimates, this tea I found to be really stimulating.

      In regards to 1, I actually was gifted half of the blended Mingqian Brick and definitely understand the remarks on dust/chopped. For this particular session (and my previous one) I actually had decently whole leaves, largely because Linda broke it up into the 5grams I used.

      Will keep my eyes peeled for those teas. Was using the Way Back Machine to look at Houde’s prices and saw that Bokchoy selling for a (now) hilariously low amount of $$.


  2. Black wrapper is for sale again at the previous price. At that price, it’s decisively lower than retail, even relatively unambitious retail.

    Wet-stored Yuanyexiang is back on sale too, but at $545, more than Banatea’s dry-stored. Not really what I’d call a great price, but realistic, given what the prices are for the ’01 Dayi Simplified Yun 7542 etc, etc.

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