For many of my friends and acquaintances, I'm a food fairy of sorts. It's always a pleasure to be able to provide something they would not have had without my intervention and a double bonus if they really like it. I gave out 70 boxes of Rabbitos Royale last year which remains my biggest hit to date but I like to keep my food surprises more targeted to specific palates. But on the flip side because I've tried so many things, edible surprises are getting rarer and rarer for me.
I was rushing about trying to get my brew in amongst the other coffee drinkers in our company's rather tight kitchen. The leaves look dark but it doesn't look quite right. I only took a few leaves in case things don't turn out. But the brew looks light- that's not shu I think to myself. One sip and I know it's not shu or at least the kind I drink. OMG I think to myself- it tastes much more like the aged sheng I've had except much much mellower. I brew up the first few cups and run back to my desk. It has a beautifully comforting sweetness like maple syrup with a warm qi. This is the back rub Israel is talking about. I do not need to send my Heng Li Chang to Berkeley Massage school as he suggests. This tea already knows how.
The brew did not reveal any complexity or depth in my rather casual work brewing setup but it melted some bubbling tensions away. (I had to restrain myself from boring you with a rant on inadequate engineering designs.) There is a tiny tiny bit of wet storage which goes away. I pleasurably drank the rest of the tea which lasted 7 cups until it gave out. Probably with hotter water, I could have pushed it further.
Mystery Sample B was a 1990 CNNP 7262 shu that has been lightly fermented. Ira also had included the answers for me in a sealed envelope hidden in the box. The Neifei says "Menghai Lang He Cha Chang". I would appreciate any information regarding this shu. She also sent me a younger version for comparison.
I desperately want to try both examples today under more ideal conditions but I have a rather hot date with another tea I set a week ago. I need to keep my palate clear. Otherwise it's like showing up for a first time date already having kissed someone else. (Actually I have a raffish neighbor who does more than kissing before his dates. His latest mishap involved a dead cell phone battery. Having missed some rather important texts, he brought two ladies back to his place only to find his current steady girlfriend waiting for him in his bed. He is NOT a tea drinker I might add.)