This is my first review of the year 2013. This is a dark tea, but it’s not a pu-erh. It will be interesting to see how the age has effected this tea.
The leaves were pressed together and were easily separated from each other. Most of the leaves were dark brown, however some looked a dirty green. The tea smelled slightly sweet, and had the earthiness of a ripened pu-erh. The brewed leaves smelled leathery and earthy. They expanded, showing some leaves were quite long and others shorter.
I “rinsed” the tea once, but decided to keep that water in a separate cup. The rinsed brew was a light golden-red color; the first brew was a deep red. The tea was very aromatic. It was mossy, woody, sweet, and fruity. After each sip came a slight earthy aftertaste.
This steeping was smooth and sweet. The earthy aftertaste was still present, and the moss and wood notes held strong. The brew was very clear, which was unexpected given the storage conditions of the tuo cha.
In this steeping, the tea had mellowed down a bit. I noticed a more floral aftertaste, and a fruit-like quality different from the previous brews. It wasn’t as smooth as the second steeping, but it retained all the mossy and woody notes as before.
The color of this brew was gold. The earthiness was prevalent, with woody and mossy notes following. The tea was again silky smooth and floral. I liked this steeping the best.