Thank you Claire for this sample Pu’er!

Claire sent me a nice sample of this Mandala Tuocha (for anybody who hasn’t anyone to ask how to pronounce tea words it’s two-oh-cha). The tea was black/brown like bakers chocolate and pretty darn hard but not dusty smelling.

My ritual is the same each time I prepare Pu’er.
4oz. Gaiwan, S.S.filter, fairness pitcher (or small 4oz. cup if I’m alone), filtered boiling water and pick.

Because this was a hard Pu’er I rinsed it twice, taking the rinse water and washing my hands in the liquor, also washing around my face to make sure there was no scent of anything other than the tea.

Pet Peeve which most can/will ignore-
Don’t brush your teeth, put on perfumes, lip gloss or eat strong food before writing reviews. People do it, and I can’t understand how you can drink a mint tea, eat curry and write about a delicate oolong or 5 different types of tea right after each other…Pumpkin, Chai and Oolong? Tastebuds get confused.

I’m less rigid about steeping Pu’er and timing than most people.
Something in me wants to let the tea tell me what to do as I go along and adjust to the voice I hear.

My usual practice with a Shou is to steep 20-30 seconds and see what happens, then change timing if needed.

The liquor was the color of rootbeer and sparkling clear throughout.

1. At 25 seconds, the feel was slightly dry and light with the flavor of pecan and cedar. Not well developed.

2. I added 5 seconds and the tea was creamy but still light. there was slightly sweet raisin nut bread and cedar on the finish.

3. 5 more seconds and the creaminess was almost gone. The tea was refreshing and lite but without much flavor.

4. I added 5 seconds again which increased astringency and cedar on the finish.

5. 1 minute. The Pu’er was lighter than I had anticipated through all but the first two steeps. I thought that increasing the time to a minute might deepen the flavor, but it didn’t change very much.
There was a creamy texture and a mild current or raisin taste and slight cedar finish, which had been there before. This was smooth and delightful but again, very easy and light.

What was this Pu’er teaching through these steepings?

I thought about this for awhile.

It’s more common for me to drink Shou Pu’er that’s heavy with cedar flavor and often too sweet. Other Pu’er’s have a tang that can really tweek your taste buds. It’s something of an acquired taste that I like, but not everyone else might like tea quite as strong as I do.

I’d call this 2005 Xiaguan Crane an ‘intro to cedar Pu’er’, because it’s extremely light, mellow, creamy and gently sweet. There isn’t a whole cedar tree in the mouth to scare a person away!

I have a little left that I’ll share with Eric at the tea shop and steep much longer. I’m wondering how a longer steep in the beginning will taste.

Let the Pu’er guide the journey!

BTW, my newest addition to my blog is a memory of a trip to Ancash, Peru years ago in the Andes. www.teaandincense.com

Kasumi no Chajin

“Pet Peeve which most can/will ignore-
Don’t brush your teeth, put on perfumes, lip gloss or eat strong food before writing reviews. People do it, and I can’t understand how you can drink a mint tea, eat curry and write about a delicate oolong or 5 different types of tea right after each other…Pumpkin, Chai and Oolong? Tastebuds get confused.”

I totally understand this! Sometimes I do sampler days of many teas, but try to keep to types when I do.
I also rarely drink more then 2 kinds of tea in a period of 2-3 days anyway, when they are staples.

Bonnie

I certainly understand tasting teas in the same family…a group of oolongs for instance or a graduated grouping of tea from light to strongest. Total disreguard is what I was spewing about. I space the tea i drink and only drink something like chai or mint later in the day unless I’m going to stick with it all day. AM PUERH, PM BLACK TEA
or AM OOLONG, PM GREEN TEA is usually my structure (tea type in each set is reversable).

Kittenna

I completely agree with not brushing teeth/eating strongly flavoured foods/putting on perfumey things, but I don’t have problems switching completely between different teas in a short time frame. I personally prefer to have a couple completely different teas going at the same time. Some teas, of course, don’t go well with one another, but others are just fine :)

NofarS

I just enjoyed this review :)

Garret

I had a guy come into the tea shop once eating a candy bar and I was sampling some killer oolong. He tried it and said, “tastes like warm water to me.” Gee, I wonder why…

Bonnie

Made me laugh Garret!

Kashyap

yeah I had a similar experience at a Korean/American restaurant when the owner/cook a native of Korea who drinks barely tea and ginger tea, sampled a 10 year, small farmer, extremely green tieguanyin and declared it ‘flavorless’….so much for delicate orchid notes :)

alaudacorax

“… two-oh-cha …” – Oops! I’ve been saying it ‘toucha’ for years. Probably Nothing But Tea’s fault – they spell it wrong – and I suppose it’s just never registered when I’ve seen it spelt properly. Good ‘Thanks’ to Bonnie; ironic ‘Thanks’ to NBT.

Bonnie

I’ve seen it spelled toucha, tuocha, tuo cha just as you see puerh pu’er, pu-erh. The pronunciation is still the same.

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Comments

Kasumi no Chajin

“Pet Peeve which most can/will ignore-
Don’t brush your teeth, put on perfumes, lip gloss or eat strong food before writing reviews. People do it, and I can’t understand how you can drink a mint tea, eat curry and write about a delicate oolong or 5 different types of tea right after each other…Pumpkin, Chai and Oolong? Tastebuds get confused.”

I totally understand this! Sometimes I do sampler days of many teas, but try to keep to types when I do.
I also rarely drink more then 2 kinds of tea in a period of 2-3 days anyway, when they are staples.

Bonnie

I certainly understand tasting teas in the same family…a group of oolongs for instance or a graduated grouping of tea from light to strongest. Total disreguard is what I was spewing about. I space the tea i drink and only drink something like chai or mint later in the day unless I’m going to stick with it all day. AM PUERH, PM BLACK TEA
or AM OOLONG, PM GREEN TEA is usually my structure (tea type in each set is reversable).

Kittenna

I completely agree with not brushing teeth/eating strongly flavoured foods/putting on perfumey things, but I don’t have problems switching completely between different teas in a short time frame. I personally prefer to have a couple completely different teas going at the same time. Some teas, of course, don’t go well with one another, but others are just fine :)

NofarS

I just enjoyed this review :)

Garret

I had a guy come into the tea shop once eating a candy bar and I was sampling some killer oolong. He tried it and said, “tastes like warm water to me.” Gee, I wonder why…

Bonnie

Made me laugh Garret!

Kashyap

yeah I had a similar experience at a Korean/American restaurant when the owner/cook a native of Korea who drinks barely tea and ginger tea, sampled a 10 year, small farmer, extremely green tieguanyin and declared it ‘flavorless’….so much for delicate orchid notes :)

alaudacorax

“… two-oh-cha …” – Oops! I’ve been saying it ‘toucha’ for years. Probably Nothing But Tea’s fault – they spell it wrong – and I suppose it’s just never registered when I’ve seen it spelt properly. Good ‘Thanks’ to Bonnie; ironic ‘Thanks’ to NBT.

Bonnie

I’ve seen it spelled toucha, tuocha, tuo cha just as you see puerh pu’er, pu-erh. The pronunciation is still the same.

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Bio

Colorado Grandma
http://www.teaandincense.com
Grandmother to 3 teenaged girls and 5 young boys. (we all drink tea!) I began teatime in the Summer over 30 years ago when my children were little. We took a break from play for tea and snacks every day. My children loved tea time.
There are several tea houses close to my home and a Tea Festival in Boulder. Fort Collins is a bit of a foodie town. We brew lots of Beer (Fat Tire is one brand) and have several Spice Shops (Savory was one featured on Food Network).
Colorado State University is a mile from my home and the Rocky Mountains begin to climb at the end of my street. The climate is semi-arid with LOTS OF SUN AT 5000 feet. (Heavy Winter snows start in higher elevations). Living my whole life in Northern California (Silicon Valley) I have to admit that I LOVE IT HERE!!!
I attend a wonderful Greek Orthodox Church and enjoy cooking ethnic foods (all kinds). I am disabled with Migraines and Fibromyalgia.
My family is Bi-racial (African-American, Scots) and Bi-cultural, (Peru, Cyprus, France, Mexico, Native American)
I’ve worked at a Winery, was a System Analyst, in telecom, been an Athlete and Coach, Artist, Vista Volunteer. Love healthy cooking (and delicious food!). Love to travel and have been to Italy, Greece, Turkey, Malta, Peru, Croatia, Canada, Mexico, Hawaii, Alaska

Location

Fort Collins,Colorado

Website

http://www.teaandincense.com

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