89

“Well, this is interesting,” I thought as I opened the little sample packet. My experience with pu’er is extremely limited (I guess that’s what inspired me to step out and order the samplers from Verdant Tea). The dry leaf was, well, chunky, as one would expect from a tea that had been chipped off a compressed cake, but it was exciting to my pu’er-noviceness.

My first impression of the leaf smell was…wood. Like the wooden desk I had when I was a little kid that for some reason, I enjoyed licking. I don’t know why, I was a weird kid, but that’s the first thing that came to mind.

After two rinsings, I had a bit of trouble getting this down for the first couple of steepings; it came off very astringent to me, despite near-instant steep times. But there was a nuttiness that was very apparent, along with more of that woody-flavor. Happily, a few steepings later the overbearing astringency subsided a bit. The emerging flavor is one I’m not quite sure how to describe; seeing as I have so little experience with teas like this I’m not really sure what to compare it to. There is sort of a light sweetness, almost like that in a white tea, and maybe a sort of whole-grainy flavor, like a hot breakfast cereal.

Overall, I’m not sure I’m exactly wild about this tea, but it’s certainly something I’d like to revisit later after I’ve had more experience with teas of this sort. Pu’er really is a whole world of its own.

On a side note, occasionally when I drink tea, I get this weird heady, cloudy, relaxed feeling that I half-jokingly refer to as “teahigh”. So far it doesn’t seem tea-specific; it seems to be pretty random. It’s not strictly caffeine or tea-related either, since I’ve experienced the feeling with herbals as well, and occasionally even coffee. But when trying this tea, almost as soon as the cup touched my lips I started getting that heady feeling, and much stronger than usual. I actually had to space out the steepings throughout the course of the day because I had some projects I needed to focus on. While I’m still pretty sure the feeling isn’t tea-specific, I figured I would make note of it anyway, just in case.

Geoffrey

Hi Aiko. I enjoyed reading about your heady “tea high” experience with this one. We experience what you’ve described on a regular basis when trying some of the more exceptional samples our sourcing agents send us, and “tea high” or “tea drunk” end up being the same words we use to talk about it in earnest when we’re evaluating a tea.

Anyway, I notice that you mention your first couple steepings of the Farmer’s Co-op being overly strong, and I’m just curious what kind of leaf to water ratio you used this time? This is one that we’ve found to be extraordinarily potent, and typically recommend using much less leaf that one might for other sheng pu’ers. I usually use a small bit, like just enough to fit in a teaspoon for about 3-4oz of water. Otherwise I’ve found it can be somewhat unruly in those first several steepings. Do you have a sense of how much leaf you used?

Aiko

Tea Drunk, hah. That makes sense too! It’s neat to know I’m not the only one.
Hmm, I used 4 grams to 90ml, too much, you think? I’ll have to keep that in mind for next time, thanks :>

Geoffrey

Ah yes. I just spoke with David about it. For Farmer’s Co-op I would suggest using half that leaf quantity, so around 2 grams (or just enough to fit in a level teaspoon) for 90ml of water. My gaiwan is about that size and I use the teaspoon guideline. It doesn’t look like a lot of leaf when you’re preparing to brew it, but the stuff is loaded with flavor. I hope this helps produce a better experience for you next time. Happy drinking!

CHAroma

I too have experienced a “tea high” without any apparent connection to caffeine content. Last night, I got it from a flavored green tea! Hahaha, it’s always a surprising feeling to me.

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

People who liked this

Comments

Geoffrey

Hi Aiko. I enjoyed reading about your heady “tea high” experience with this one. We experience what you’ve described on a regular basis when trying some of the more exceptional samples our sourcing agents send us, and “tea high” or “tea drunk” end up being the same words we use to talk about it in earnest when we’re evaluating a tea.

Anyway, I notice that you mention your first couple steepings of the Farmer’s Co-op being overly strong, and I’m just curious what kind of leaf to water ratio you used this time? This is one that we’ve found to be extraordinarily potent, and typically recommend using much less leaf that one might for other sheng pu’ers. I usually use a small bit, like just enough to fit in a teaspoon for about 3-4oz of water. Otherwise I’ve found it can be somewhat unruly in those first several steepings. Do you have a sense of how much leaf you used?

Aiko

Tea Drunk, hah. That makes sense too! It’s neat to know I’m not the only one.
Hmm, I used 4 grams to 90ml, too much, you think? I’ll have to keep that in mind for next time, thanks :>

Geoffrey

Ah yes. I just spoke with David about it. For Farmer’s Co-op I would suggest using half that leaf quantity, so around 2 grams (or just enough to fit in a level teaspoon) for 90ml of water. My gaiwan is about that size and I use the teaspoon guideline. It doesn’t look like a lot of leaf when you’re preparing to brew it, but the stuff is loaded with flavor. I hope this helps produce a better experience for you next time. Happy drinking!

CHAroma

I too have experienced a “tea high” without any apparent connection to caffeine content. Last night, I got it from a flavored green tea! Hahaha, it’s always a surprising feeling to me.

Login or sign up to leave a comment.

Profile

Bio

I like tea. And fish.

Following These People