March 27, 2010

2005 Chang Tai - Gold Bamboo Mountain

Gold Bamboo Mountain, sounds delicious doesn't it? A Chang Tai offering made from "wild grown arbor material" from the Qiunjia Zhai area, where ever that is, Yiwu? I don't know really, guess I could check into it. Ive been experimenting lately buying several Chang Tai teas. The reviews for Chang Tai's cakes are pretty much all over the place, people seem to either really like these cakes a lot or are indifferent to them. So far I'm liking them quite a bit. This Gold Bamboo Mountain cake is a good example of a cake made by people that cared about quality of product. Judging by the cakes ease of disassemble I'm assuming they were stone pressed. Very large and beautiful leaf with some rather large, healthy twigs and branches thrown in for good measure, artisanally rustic. The tea smells very fresh for being five years of age. The teas aroma kinda reminds me of the Wu Liang area teas, very fresh, green and kinda herbal.

The teas flavors are very enjoyable, the vegetal aspects are still there despite the five years of age this tea has. Slightly sweet with bitterness being nothing more than an afterthought. It's not smokey or tobaccoish, nor is it floral or fruity. Just delightfully vegetal, herbal and refreshingly clean. For a tea with such light flavors whats unusual about it is that it has a fairly heavy body, slightly syrupy. Brews up a cup with superb clarity, it just sparkles in the glass sharing pot. Durability is average, nothing really noteworthy there. A really enjoyable tea that Ive no intentions of buying more of. We have all had our share of those haven't we? For me this tea makes for a good afternoon session but not something that's going to get you out the door in the morning. The teas quality is reflected in it's price, $45.00 per cake. But I don't see it as having the potential to age very well. It's never going to change into one of those robust and stout teas that I love so much.


  1. if you're interested, there are some notes of an ancient Half-Dipper article, which was part of a Dragon Tea House Tasting Event. Even though the tasting covered on the 2006 vintage, perhaps you can find some similarities, or perhaps differences which might be just as revealing.

  2. Morning Maitre, Yes there are similarities as well as differences in the tasting notes of these two teas but I don't think we are comparing the same teas. I guess if your ides of a "good" tea is a strong and pungent type then maybe this tea isn't for you. But I enjoy these light hearted types for a change of pace every once in a while. Interesting that the over all impression of the Jinzhu cake was so similar to my tasting of the Gold Bamboo Mountain. Chang Tai definately has his own style of flavor profiles.