Although I have drunk various pu-erh in the last few days, I thought I would stick with an innocuous review of something nobody can dislike, not even me. Behold the Ya Bao(芽宝). This "bud treasure" comes from the same tea varietal for puerh grown in Western Yunnan. Mine were simply sold as Sun-Dried Buds in the White Tea section of YS. I tried peeling away the leaves to see if these were flower buds since tea leaf buds don't usually look like this but there was only a tiny sliver of a curled up leaf inside each one.
This tea I would put to the category of guest tea- non-offensive likable pretty teas that can be enjoyed by just about anybody. I'm surprised the Koreans or the Japanese haven't vacuumed up all these bud treasures from China. As you can see, the furry silver buds are extremely visually pleasing and I can imagine a lovely light green silk print based on their form. This is one of the few teas I will buy lots more of after my No Buy Pact is over. Not for myself but as X-mas gift tea.
Last week I really wanted to try Ya Bao and couldn't because of the No Buy Pact. But then lo and behold, I saw a puffy little unopened bag in one of my boxes. I have no recollection of buying Ya Bao and even Ira says she didn't give it to me? I think I'll go shopping in my own tea closet this weekend.
After a month and a half of my No Buy Pact, strangely enough I have no desire to buy puerh off the internet. I think my sheng buying days are greatly reduced if not entirely over. The teas I do want to buy immediately are just dianhongs that I ran out of. I guess I don't even think of getting dianhongs as "buying tea"- it's just a daily staple like salt, peppercorns, nuts, and such. The special teas I want to look for are the unroasted aged oolongs.