Here’s the announcement of the next batch of tea of the months. Feel free to drink alongside, give suggestions, etc. Due to being egregiously and hilariously over my tea budget, I’m not sure how much I will be able to accommodate specific requests!
- Greater Yiwu, Mengla County + Youle (May 2015)
- Menghai County (June 2015)
- Aged Oolongs (July 2015)
Regrets & Repeats (Redos)
Tea journeys often involve pretty steep learning curves. Mine is no exception. There have been more than a few moments where my (our) noobness has been frankly obvious. For the sake of appearing more dignified, I sometimes wish I could take certain episodes back or have a do-over. Even a year ago when I started up the tea of the months, after having consumed tea seriously for well over a year I still wish I had a couple mulligans. These three tea of the months are all repeats of tea of the months from previous years. As always, I’m eager to learn some more!
May 2015 (Greater Yiwu)
Considering my overall pu’erh inexperience at the time and that it was my first more orchestrated endeavor into pu’erh, I’m amazed at how well last year’s Yiwu tasting actually turned out. This can be largely credited to Scott, the many recommendations he gave and of course his teas. There aren’t many vendors that offer the breadth that he does, which is great for both educational purposes and getting your feet wet. This year I’m going to be including a few more vendors in what will likely end up being a pretty massive report.
As always, there’s a few opinions that I had that I’d probably alter/change today from last year’s report. The report definitely does not qualify as a regret and made a very nice stepping stone into pu’erh/young pu’erh.
Of all the pu’erh regions, I probably drink the most Yiwu teas regularly and am very much looking forward to diving in further again.
- Assortment of Chawangshop Yiwu + Laotian (not pu’erh)
- Assortment of Yunnan Sourcing Yiwu
- Assortment of Tea Urchin Yiwu
- Other bits and scraps. Like some Chenguanghetang, Misty Peaks Teas I have lying around.
Note: Let me know if you’re interested in a more specific list of teas!
June 2015 (Menghai County)
The equivalent would’ve been the Nannuo and Bulang reports last year. These both are far closer to the regret category than the Yiwu report. I think alot of this was due to the somewhat poor selection of teas last year. With pu’erh, it can be very challenging to pickout proper teas when you don’t really know what you’re doing. It’s also a big reason why I’m announcing these reports ahead of time, to hear more about specific teas that might be better candidates than whatever I might have lying around. This year, I’ve decided to combine these two areas and include the rest of Menghai County (Mengsong, Bada, Menghai Tea Factory teas, etc.).
This month, I have an especially random group of samples, including stuff I didn’t finish last year and a few additional teas from Yunnan Sourcing + White2Tea + Tea Urchin + Essence of Tea. Again, please let me know if you’d like me to publish a more specific list of teas.
July 2015 (THE BOX)
David Fincher’s excellent, breakout film Se7en, involves two cops (Morgan Freeman and Brad Pitt) trying to catch a killer who is reenacting the seven deadly sins. The films climax involves an anonymous package (box) being delivered to a remote location with the two cops and the primary suspect. Freeman goes to check the package and Pitt’s character is left in suspense.. Anyways it’s a good movie that’s not for the light-hearted or weak-stomached.
Back to tea.. In July of 2014, much to my dismay Origin Tea shut down. I was able to peel a single box of random, assorted teas from Tony (OT’s proprietor) for a small sum of money before his shop was shut down.
So what’s in the damn box?? Supposedly, leftover aged oolongs from his tastings in Taiwan (I am hopeful that it’s contents are less horrific than Se7en’s). During the first half of 2014, I’d been working my way through aged oolongs and thanks to the guidance of Tony had been slowly developing a taste for them. Fast-forward a year and I really don’t have any new source that is anywhere as close to the magnanimous Origin. I had intended to start diving in during last September’s Aged Oolong of the month, but simply didn’t have the capacity to do so.
In July, I intend to drink through as much of this box as possible. I’m optimistic that it will end better for me than what the cops may’ve encountered in Se7en. I’ll also be including whatever other aged oolong samples I have along for what is sure to be a fun, bumpy ride.
(the references to Se7en have been shamelessly ripped off from from the references to Se7en by Grantland)