Thursday, February 28, 2013

Master Han's Wild Picked Yunnan: Symbol of Culture and Tea!


    There never been anything as inspiring and equally surprising than one painstakingly handmade from those of a craftsmen! Timeless beauty and precision that no machine could ever achieve  no mass marketing could ever promoted, nor even the captains of industry who time and time again turn products into nameless and ordinary objects could ever turn Mr.Han's mind! Like every crafts person in the world, such as that of Natela 's Georgian Old Gentleman that signify devotion to a dying trade, Mr.Han has outdone those whoose multi-billion dollar farms that produces mockeries of a drink  and earning status among the few brave souls who dare defy profit barons in this world. Who ever said the age of craftsmanship is finished? Certainly not I or the many who loves a simple but special beverage!
           Wonderfully beautiful and best of all natural! There are no time tables for quotas, no schedules to determine a harvest or seasons to pluck a bush naked. Its the natural charms and beauty of a crop that beckons one to pluck at ample amounts, love for a beverage and culture that centers between sentiments and tradition of social gatherings and appreciation of nature. Even the very leaves that makes each cup is determined by the tea tree alone not coaxed into producing tasty tea yet a grandmother's love and care to
know what's best for anyone at a dinner table! As much surprising as it is unexpected  it has the most complex aromas and flavors so indicative of Yunnan. Its far more than earthy, the aromas of the dried leaves is reminiscent of linen, smoked wood, hints of liquor and the usual earthy aroma. In contrast the wet leave smell has a stronger smell of linens spray, hints of citrus with liquor notes that come at the back end of the palate.                                      

          Infusing this tea also brings a sense of youth and age. My first infusion at 195 degrees had  fruitiness and crisp linen taste imparts a sweet and clean taste while the Keemun plumy/ smokiness adds an aged appeal that goes well with its earthy character. It fits quite well with this tea being plucked from a wild tea tree, its varying complexities almost interwines inexorably  with each flavor complementing without conflict.

The second infusion at 40 seconds over time had a prominent starchy character. Its much like boiled plantains or boiled rice when entering the palate, with hints of linen that accent the flavor giving it an sharp strong note midway at the palate. At the last, a fruity finish complements the plant like taste that reminds the dear drinker of undying youth in all people while still being matured. The third infusion at 60 seconds has stronger starchiness that one normally associates with roasted tubers, bananas, or rice, its accented with a fuller fruity plum note that gives the real depth of age much like pu-erh.
            At the last, an empty cup, a happy individual, and another day such teas would still be around to be savored. What is there in the world that offers so much yet can be as simple as leaves? There are lots! Markets today seem to be morbidly obese men that are bursting with products with so much offer and not just at the local level but international.   Foods once exotic and not defiled (yes I said it!) by native tastes are becoming shadows of previous forms, turning into something so painful as Doritos Tacos!  This really strikes a point, Is there anything any different? But in a whole other level is the food any different or even special? Sure, we love something special sometimes, buy a little something that touches the heart, pay those who are willing to give out their best and praise them. But lets face it, people like Mr.Hang is facing stiff competition these days. Micky D's, Starbucks, and Wal-Mart is too good of a genie with promises of quick and fast satisfaction lifestyle at a cost. All the while, people like Mr.Hang still plucking leaves, meticulously processing  perfection from imperfection  tasting the teas at his village! Could a machine or even a slew of company "experts"  and an eye for profit can replace the quality that is of heart and hands? Quality and wholesomeness? Pride and Devotion? A culture and symbol that is world renowned and beloved? Certainly a product like this says a lot but importantly meaningful for the mind and the tangible.
           Versatility:1.0; while a tea with a great potential to be blended, its own properties that are complex and noteworthy is all what is needed to be enjoyed in its own rights. This tea could be enjoyed hot or cold, cold being quite fruity and hot having most of the subtle notes apparent.

           Taste: 9.0; beyond great!  Complex and mellow with fruity undertones, very surprising notes of linen, hints of plum, olive oil, and even a brandy. Really there is something to pick up on depending on the taster's imagination.

           Disposition: Mellow and a slight astringent with flavors that would lighten up the most cynical of naysayers! Though it maybe unsual to those unacquainted with some tastes, it provided a meaningful experiences that would open worlds of flavors.

           Palate: Mellow, Complex, slightly astringent, smooth.

                                                 Drink on Tea Lovers! Cheers!

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