Monday, October 12, 2015

Yan Qing Hao Gushu Shroom

Autumn is a season that is often tinged with regret especially more so in years when the first half of the year you struggled and struggled against life's forces without reprieve.  One's sorrows can be even harder to bear in the long days of winter.  But I pump both my fists up in the air and vow to enjoy the last warm days of fall and to regret nothing.

This Friday, I was the happy and grateful recipient of a tea box from Cha Kung Fu's Emmett. His wife recently gave birth to a lovely daughter so I feel even more grateful and surprised he could squeeze me in.  I've only done auntie duty but I know how precious even one free minute can be when you are taking care of newborn.  Congratulations Emmett!

Emmett procured some quality Yanqing Hao with a group purchase from a Taiwanese supplier last fall.  Not sure what I was doing that I would miss out on such a plum opportunity but through Emmett's generosity I still get to try.  I brewed the '07 Gushu Jincha this morning.    The more believable gushus I've had tended to be gentle on the body and yet potent - like a really good acupressure massage.  And so it was partly so with this YQH.

Every genre has it's cliches and sorry I had to pull a "gentle yet powerful" on you dear reader.  Those words are applied more commonly to colon cleansers than it is to puerh although some sheng can boast both applications.  But what do I mean exactly? Because the "gentle" adjective on puerh rides a fine line between pleasantly mellow and outright weak, the tea needs to manifest some energy on your body not to be dismissed simply as feeble.  My husband's friend had swung by to help with some physical labor and even with the few thimblefuls of this YQH I served them- they told me they were able to power through thanks to the tea.

As far as the decade old taste goes, this jincha was a tasty brew that made me regret not having tried it when it was a youngish sheng-  it must have been a sparkle in the mouth as a newborn.  From Yan Qing Hao's facebook page, I found their album for this '07 Jincha but not much description:
As any useful Yanqing Hao data on the web was scarce, I ended up clicking through Mr. Yan's Yunnan trip photos on houde.  I'm surprised how young and plump-faced he looked a decade ago. I'm also surprised how similar vendor photos of Yunnan maocha buying trips tend to be. You can check a box for the following types of photos all with the tea vendor looking sweaty:

  • shot holding a sack of precious maocha
  • shot of bamboo pan with sun dried macha
  • shot in front of the wok full of dry-fried maocha
  • shots with native tea picking grandmas or better yet maidens
  • shots with village kids...
(I was too lazy to make a photo collage...)


  1. That mushroom is a blend of arbor tree and wild tree. Qiaomu gushu. From Yiwu area.
    I think it's a really good tea too. Glad you enjoyed it. And I'm still making orders every month.

  2. While gentle yet powerful may be cliche I can't think of a better way to describe my experiences with the yqh teas