A deep and abiding love of Oriental Beauty

A deep and abiding love of Oriental Beauty

Extra! Extra! Read all about it! Hidden Peak's Puerh 401 renders Buddha-Mom (nearly) speechless!

I am speechless. Almost.

I will have to allow the website the do the talking. I can tell you that even I, with my newbie palate could tell right away I was sipping something pretty vibrant and alive. Two steeps and I had to back off, my head felt both light and heavy at the same time. That's when I decided I better get online and find out what I was drinking. Here is what I learned.


  • Vintage: 1996 - 1998
  • Category: Shou
  • Format: Loose leaf
  • Leaf Grade: 3
  • Growing Region: Lincang
  • Blend of two different teas
  • After-matured 3 years
401 is a blend of two shou pu-erhs made for advanced drinkers. This was a small production tea made with small leaf grade raw materials, one from 1996 and one from 1998. After blending there was a three-year after-maturing for optimal harmonization.
A unique aspect of this tea is its Hong Kong/Yunnan flavor profile. Wet storage pushed the ripening in early stages followed by years of much lower humidity. The result is a flavor and aroma profile that presents the interesting palette of wet storage without the physical down side of ingesting “moldy tea”.


Due to the small leaf size this tea infuses quickly - a wonderful opportunity to test your gung fu brewing. It is a very complex and elemental blend with minerals, woods, grasses and waterways taking the palette on a wonderfully rich culinary tour.

Wetleaf:dark brown/black color and very even in the blend • beautiful juice exuding and quite brilliant


medium clarity in beautiful burnt umber tone during initial steepings moving into bright clear broth with gorgeous amber hue


pointed initial impact splaying into diverse avenues of colorful expansion

I have now been steeping the same 5 grams of leaves for almost 24 hours. Not constantly, and I certainly didn't start the day out with 401, but at this point, I could, if I had the mental faculties and tea knowledge say a lot more about this tea than I am. Sadly for my readers, I am too new to tea to know how to talk about something like this.
I can tell you that I think I've infused the leaves maybe 8-10 times and that it rather suddenly, after being left alone for a few hours, got very sweet and gave me some chi energies that might have frightened a less adventurous newbie.
Just a wild ride, but a delicious one from the first steep almost 24 hours ago til this last one.