Thursday, March 31, 2011

The 1990's(maybe) Yiwu of Songpin Hao

The last time I had visited pu-erh shop, they had two 90’s cakes that looked quite appealing.  The first cake being the Dingxing cake, and the second cake was this one, the Songpin Hao.  I know practically nothing about this cake, and no offense to Jim, but the description wasn’t too helpful.  I have a feeling that he can only go on what his vendor told him.

The leaves on this sample are small to medium sized with a mild, musty, and sweet aroma.  There aren’t too many buds, and that could mean any number of things.

I brewed this tea gongfu style using 3.6 grams of leaf in a 100 milliliter Gaiwan.  I tried to be reasonable, as I didn’t know if this tea would be strong or weak.  There was a rinse, of course. I do that with every pu-erh and any other aged tea I may be brewing.

The First infusion was dark and medicinal with a smooth mouthfeel and a clean finish in the mouth.  The body is thick and swirling, while a mild wet-store flavor mixes with dusty leather in midpalate.  And right off the bat, I’m liking it.  What else will this stuff give me?

The second cup started off differently.  That mild, wet stored flavor from the first cup was still hanging around in the second one - no surprise there.  A new combination of old cedar and raw tobacco buzzed inside my mouth, as if it were trying to change into something else.  As a reminder to me of it’s not too distant youth, a slight bitterness appeared right in the back of the throat.  I read that some think that is where the bitterness should be, and others who say differently.  All I know to write here to you is to decide what you like.

Cup three was identical to cup two.  Exactly identical.  Wow.

Cups four and five were where changes started to really occur.  The stronger wet-stored flavors had dissipated, along with the old cedar notes.  Now, there was a mild sweetness and a nice earthy flavor with just a hint of dampness.

The last two cups faded into blandness, with a rough feeling finally appearing on the seventh cup.  I have no idea if this stuff is truly old tree or not, I just know that I found it rather enjoyable.  And at 46 bucks a cake, it’s quite a deal.  Take care, readers.


  1. Maybe it is just the picture, but the leaves do not look very dark for a 90's cake.

  2. I'll admit, I do my picture taking at night and use a less than high-quality camera. I will have to work on my photography!