Saturday, September 29, 2012

06 Menghai Caravan To Tibet

More shu.  I know.  Due to the cooling weather, my system has been more sensitive to sheng lately so you may get an endless winter stream of shu reviews.

I drank four different shu's this morning- technically I got out of bed at noon.  In continuation of my cheap shu project, I popped in the $6.80 Tianpin Ripe to slug with my fried egg on chinese leftover brunch. Ever since re-uptaking my pu-erh obsession,  I'm just not interested in spending time cooking and will resort to bare minimum to keep my system going especially when the cook is out. Chocolate bars for dinner last Wednesday was a bit of a low point- sad considering I used to be a serious cook but a tea junkie must get a fix before all else.

For $7, the 07 Tianpin Ripe is passably decent- i.e. I drank three small cups of it. I had a handful of shus that I either spat out or refused to do more than sipping recently so even being able take it down means much.  If you don't have this brick, you're really not missing out.  If you did get it, it just adds to your pile of cheap shus with a woody profile.

When I don't quite get the fix I need,  I immediately have to go into the arms of another  tea I know that will do me right.  So I brought out my 2006 Menghai Caravan to Tibet.  "That's more like it!",  I tell myself as I sip the first brews.  Menghai Factory released this unique one time batch to celebrate their 2006 media stunt setting out a caravan of 99 horses to travel the ancient Tea Horse Road.  This tea of course did not take this arduous journey. (I also forward readers to Phyll Sheng's post for further reading.)

Flawlessly smooth and balanced with just a hint of sasparilla- I can rely on this solid shu.  Thick body with tangible mouthfeel, I'm satisfied. Whew, now I can go onto take care of laundry matters.  To think I didn't snatch more of this up when Scott was just giving these away for $15. I wasn't forced to drink shu back then. All you youngsters quaffing sheng without a care and being sniffy about shu- be ware- it could happen to you one day.

These high end Menghai shu's are no longer an interesting experience to me but they represent to me a baseline quality like drinking a nice VSOP brandy at the end of a day.   I personally prefer the robust maltier more livelier 06 Menghai Sanjipu(my Menghai ATF) over this CTT but I'm lucky even to have both.
For interested readers, I also have the 2006 CTT sheng which remains unopened. Back in 2006, I found the Menghai blends to be too rough and so I've intentionally decided not to open that beeng.


  1. It seems I'm both sniffy about shu and unable to drink young sheng with abandon. The boy in the pu-less bubble.

    After reading this post I feel bad that I didn't send you any shupu. Next time.


    1. I think we are in a slowly growing club Israel. Older one gets, the harshness of sheng will get to the body. And we are all aging along perhaps faster than our sheng.

      I try to make my best effort with shu but it took years to even liking it a little and I'm sometimes on the verge of disowning it. But it's too late as I've got equal poundage shu as I do sheng now.


  2. Oooohh, I'm certainly ready to send you shu when you're set...