Yesterday when I was digging through a box simply labeled as “Puerh Black Tea Samples”. It’s a box full of tea samples, either we received from tea producers like XZH or Chen Guang He Tang, or Hou De sample packs that were not sold. Most samples are pre-2012 – that was about the time when we stopped buying any pu-erhs at all.
I found one sample pack that still has our previous house & Hou De Asian Art address on it – and it is a 2005 XZH Lao Ban Zhan sample pack, still sealed! Since we no longer live in that house, I masked the house address. If you still have sample packs with this old address (zip code 77077), then you are really a long-time customer of Hou De : ) We rented a PO Box later (I think around 2006) to represent Hou De.
Imagine a time when we were offering samples of XZH (1) Lao Ban Zhan (2) You Le Remote Mountain and (3) Nan Nuo Purple Tips …
The XZH Lao Ban Zhan sample has been sealed since 2005. After I cut away the heat-sealed line and opened the zip, a very concentrated ripe fruity aroma rushed to my nose. Of course, I could not wait to make a tea out of it. It was surprisingly young – I guess due to the fact it has not had fresh air and always kept indoor – but very concentrated in fruity aroma and camphor-like spiciness. What was most interesting was the whole body sensation out of the tea – normally I don’t like to describe cha qi, as it is a very personal feeling and can be misleading. But there was a sensation “climbing” all the way from stomach to my head and left a tingling feeling in the scalp! So very strange and interesting.