Apr 13, 2013

guess guess guess... reunion of 3 brothers (1)

In the past a few years, several people told me that they found it interesting that I always claim that I'm not so excited about puerh, yet I seem to drink them and write about them all the time :-p

Indeed, puerh is by far not the tea type I drink the most. But it seems there is always more to write about puerh. For green tea and oolong, after I write about a tea, I'm done. I wouldn't write about the new Long Jing every year,  because they are similar in most years. But for puerh, there are so many producers and so many brands. And even for the same product of the same producer, there are various years, various versions of the same year (always HATE producers who do this kind of things though!), outcomes of various storage, etc.

Chang Tai is one of those producers that create various versions of the same tea even within the same year, and it has so many registered trademarks to a degree of confusion. Generally speaking, I don't dislike Chang Tai, and even like some of their teas very much. But I hate how confusing they are, and feel during their heydays back in early 2000s, they significantly benefited from the confusion they generated. But then there is tea karma and they did receive some revenge later on, as I've gossiped here.

In Chinese market today, Chang Tai is recovering but still suffers from its failure back in 2007. Then, sometimes there are good deals.

Ban Na Yun Wu (Cloud) Tea is one of the supposedly quality-price-ratio product of Chang Tai. It's relatively inexpensive compared with other Chang Tai products, and is supposed to have relatively solid quality.

Now here is a game for you! I've got three Ban Na Cloud tea here. Some of them I got with really good price, and some of them don't have as good quality-price-ratio - I got them anyway, mainly to let the 3 brothers have a reunion, and for me to compare them. So in this sense maybe we can call them "tuition tea"? :-)

I've got - 1, 2003 Banna dry storage; 2, 2005 banna dry storage; and 3, 2005 Guangzhou dry storage.

Now the question is: Which is which?

And the bonus question is - any comments on the cakes and leaves?

I will let you take the guesses before blabbing more...

After taking the photos, I enlarged the photos and looked at them carefully. And I have to say, part of the question is a trick, and if you know the key, you could tell. On the other hand, part of the question is purely guessing. If I hadn't put my hands on them, by looking at the photos, I would be quite clueless. So just guess and don't use too much logic :-D


Emmett said...

My best guess is. The bottom left to be the 2003 Banna, the upper left the 2005 Banna, and the right the 2005 Guangzhou.

Ira said...

I have the same conclusion as Emmet.

Petr Novák said...

Well, I would say bottom left 2003 Banna too but I am going to switch those two upper ones. Just guessing...

Frank said...

I would guess... Three identical cakes.

Gingko said...

Hi guys, here is the "trick" I mentioned earlier - if you look at the line at the bottom of each wrapper (it's the name of the producer) and count the number of characters, they don't have the same number of characters. This is because Chang Tai registered itself as Chang Tai Group Inc. in 2005 and used the name since then.
So the top left is 2003 (Banna). Bottom left is 2005 (Banna) and the right is 2005 (Guangzhou). But the two 2005 cakes have some small differences too both in wrapper and in leaves (hard to discern from the photos but one has more older leaves on surface than the other as seen from the photos). It looks like they are from different batches of that year.

Anonymous said...

Firstly i didn't understand what's on your photos!

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