Yueguangbai , the White Moonlight
What a romantic name! Yueguangbai [the whiteness of the moonlight] is a lightly processed version of large leaves from Simao area, which in some peoples minds’ would qualify as puerh tea, but may be considered a white tea due to its light processing, or even a red tea after aging. When it is fresh, YGB drinks a bit like a white tea, but after aging it morphs into hongcha flavors [red tea].
I am fudging the date of this tea, and the wrapper is unlabeled. I know that I bought this tea in Guangzhou in 2010. Assuming that it was pressed the fall before, that puts this cake’s birthday around 2009.
This cake has entered into red tea adulthood as you can tell by the auburn soup below.
The YGB is thick with a flavor that my mother refers to as silage. Silage, for those of you city folk, is freshly cut alfalfa or oats or other crops. (consult wikipedia for more silage information) Farming communities are draped in the smell of silage every year, with fermenting plants dotting the fields before they are stored for use as animal feed.
This YGB releases an immediate sweet silage smell. Fermenting hay, dry and saccharine.
How this will continue to age, I have no idea. This session is the first time I have dug into this cake in a couple of years and the change is quite big from how I remember it. It was much less brown, in both color and flavor, the last time I had it. Unlike most puerh tea, I prefer this in its earlier white stage, but alas I can’t turn back the clock.
Not my favorite tea, but for an inexpensive cake of this nature, it is a fun and welcome change of pace.