I noticed that I was reprimanded by Invader Zim for not reviewing this tea earlier (all in fun)!
Sometimes, don’t you feel like drinking a tea more than once before writing a review though?
You want to give the tea some time to settle and roll around a little in your thoughts before you do anything with it?
This is what I did. For weeks, I let the packet sit after I tried the tea.
The first time I brewed this Pu’er, it was strong and I was faced with a disconnect at the Verdant description of the taste and what
I was tasting. I talked it over with myself.
“It’s possible that my ratio of water to tea was off, and that’s why I had steeped the Pu’er to an expresso strength.”
“I tend to like strong brews. I wasn’t paying attention. I got distracted on the timing.”
Was this all true? I wanted to find out.
Paying stricter attention to detail, I went a different direction and followed my own usual steeping guidelines for Pu’er.
Knowing how strong this Pu’er could become made this brewing easier.
I rinsed the leaves 30 seconds in boiling water once.
The scent can be a little off-putting for someone not used to Pu’er and rinsing is really necessary. The scent of the leaves and taste of the tea are not the same.
The steep time was 40 seconds and produced a liquor that was as dark as coffee. (I personally wouldn’t go darker than this.)
The taste was luscious, almost creamy it was so smooth. I could taste the raisin-spice cake but it was very light and ethereal. Another thing that I noticed was that the tea isn’t too sweet. Some Pu’er’s tend to be overly sweet but this had a hint of vanilla and just enough of a savory quality to make it enjoyable. At any time of day you could drink this tea.
When I say that this would be enjoyable any time of day, I mean that this can be your morning cup with milk and is delicious (I tried it), or an afternoon pick-me-up…equally good with a sandwich or at dinner because it’s not overly sweet.
There was an initial energy that I felt right away.
The subsequent steepings were more savory than the first and I enjoyed the light mushroom flavor.
Sweetened, the tea is caramel with a spicy finish.
Personally,I like the shorter steep time of 30-40 seconds.
I made this in a small pot Western Style which is how I usually brew loose (non-chunky, nugget or tuo cha) Pu’er.
I highlighted the timing because mine is different than Verdant’s.