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Recent Tasting Notes
Gaiwan brewed this one and unlike other times I did not break up the little block before brewing. With a short rinse the block had mostly expanded after the first infusion. Light tasting with a more complex brew when being mellow and not earthy. If you are looking for more traditional premium lighter fermentation ripe puerh that is more interesting this is the best of the 2013 Puerh Shop private label or at least of the 3 that I tried.
This has to be the most unique tasting puerh that I have yet to encounter. It is much lighter and a bit more sweet than mellow. I am not sure if I’d agree with the vendor description of calling it honey like but at the same time I can not think of any better term to describe it. A very good puerh that I like for when I want something different.
This is the second time that I am brewing this tea. I found out the first time around that this is not a tea that you want to brew strong or use too much leaf as it is a lighter style puerh that is possible to over brew. Light and mellow with subtle flavors an very clean tasting. Depending upon your perspective and view on earthy puerh this is either very wonderful or a bit plain, regardless without a doubt this was made with good quality tea.
This tea is incredibly smoky in dry leaf form. So much so that I was almost disappointed before I even tasted it. BUT….when brewed I’m reminded of the sweet fragrance of summer nights. The tea is wonderfully complex, smooth, refreshing and more gentle on the pallet than other shengs. I has a Cha qi flows throughout the body and remedies my 3 pm drowsiness. The low price provides an added shock value. Will I buy more? Yes.
I added four of these mini touchas to a recent order just to see what the fuss was about. I really tried to like this tea but the rice scent wound up turning me off. It sounded good on paper, especially since other people seem to like it, but it actually made my stomach a little queasy … I’m not sure why I had this reaction. Oh well, at least it was an inexpensive lesson.
I may need therapy … I’m developing an unusual obsession with this tea. There are about 75 Pu-Erh selections in my stash if you count samples, and I keep coming back to this. I’ve had the bing for two weeks and it’s nearly half gone.
I bought this in my quest for a reasonably priced every-day shu. I have numerous other ones that range from acceptable to pretty good, but this one continues to stand out.
It’s color starts as a dark red-brown, moving through coffee-color, then into the ruby red range over 6 or 8 steeps. It’s always been clear, never cloudy. There is a powerful sweetness in the aroma starting with pralines, moving through raw cane sugar and into brown sugar, which accompanies a scent of shiitake mushrooms. Flavors of cedar and leather are underscored by a strong sweetness that ties them together very nicely, and the flavors vary in prominence over the steeps. A delightful citrus note makes an appearance in the middle steeps. A hint of spice in early steeps gives way to pepper in later ones. There is a liveliness on the tongue in the aftertaste. I find this flavor profile to be amazing in such an inexpensive shu!
I’ve tried various leaf quantities and steep times, but have settled on 6 grams to 100 ml water, one 20 second wash, then letting it sit for two minutes to allow the tea to open up. I use steep times of 15 / 10 / 15 / 15 / 15 / … seconds until the flavor starts to fade around steep 7, then either lengthen the steep time significantly or dump the leaves into the iced tea container in the fridge.
I’ve over-leafed this by 20% with good results when I want an even stronger flavor profile. Doing so introduces a pleasant bitter note to the mix.
To use a dating analogy, I have some fine sheng and shu varieties that are like that best girl you would take out to dinner on a Saturday night. But when it’s Wednesday and you just want to have a great time with the girl next door over bowling and pizza, this is the one I keep turning to.
I really question how weak or how small of a cup somebody must be using to be able to steep it 10 to 20 seconds so I did a minute on my first infusion. The tea was lighter than I normally brew my puerh but it still had a decent amount of depth. I brewed a second mug with the same tea bag for a long brew and it was about the same as the first brew or maybe a little lighter. Personally I think it would be best to just brew it for a single long infusion to get a decent strength cup of puerh. Regardless I can say that this is indeed a premium puerh teabag at a level that likely rivals a lot of cheap bricks and cakes with these one is not forced to choose between bad teabag puerh or no puerh when traveling.
7.8 g / 130 ml / 212 F / 1 wash
Steeps: 15 / 10 / 15 / 15 / 30 / 45 / 60
First steep was astringent and lacked depth of flavor. In retrospect this tea could benefit from two rinses.
The next two steeps yielded a dark, coffee-colored liquid. Astringency was diminishing and flavors were integrating such that no one thing stood out, which was enjoyable. Nice earthy aroma with no off-smells. These were my favorite steeps.
Steeps 4 and 5 were lighter in color, a reddish-brown. Astringency is gone, aroma diminishing, flavor becoming more delicate, but still enjoyable.
Steeps 6 and 7 are now a reddish-amber, aroma is faint but still slightly earthy. Flavor is very light like a green tea.
I consider this to be a decent value every day drinking tea when you don’t want to have to pay as much attention as you would a fine Pu-Erh. Caffeine level is moderate, so I could drink this after dinner and not be too wound up to go to bed three or four hours later.
Next time I would do two washes and stop drinking after the fourth steep. It might be interesting to see how this matures in another 5 years.
I haven’t had a sheng in ages and I have no idea why. I was craving the brothy/rice like quality of this tea today so I thought I’d steep some up. I was looking on the internet about whether puerh tea is good for colds and couldn’t find anything conclusive. In the past I have felt that shengs seems very cleansing… This tastes so yummy right now. Hopefully it won’t hurt. :)
Nice sweet sheng with deeper oak notes. This one reminds me being in a forest of recently harvested trees after a rain shower. Its like inhaling the dampness and being refreshed by the clean air, with the extra aromatic fragrance of the sawdust. Great cup of warmth and memories.
When I first opened the package I was impressed that the tiny leaves were beautifully intact. I steeped it for the first time this afternoon. While I’m not a fan of the initial smokiness of the tea (taste and aroma), it does have its own cha qi and a refreshing finish that I found comforting on the stomach after having a lot of lamb for dinner. I see ageing potential in this tea.
I tried three of Puerhshop’s MGH bricks, and they were all good. This one and the “Eco Big Tree 1214” especially. The 1214 is definitely the milder and more friendly of the two, ready to sit patiently after ringing your doorbell. This one (the 1206) is much more likely to kick the door down.
The leaves are medium-small for pu’er, fairly uniform and olive green in color. Compression of the brick is medium; higher than a big stone-pressed cake, but nowhere near a large factory tuo-rock. Dry aroma is dried peach/apricot, tobacco, and grass.
The flavor is very penetrating, with a strong menthol coolness. It has the fresh, pure, mineral quality I associate with Lincang, and a flavor like stewed apples and tobacco. It has a powerful, refreshing bitterness and full, sweet mouthfeel. The early steeps have a very slight smokiness, which dissipates later and shows a bit of a floral, grassy side. Very thick and sweet.
Overall, it’s great! When I first got this brick I was newer to sheng I put it aside as being too bitter and brutish, but now I’m thinking about grabbing a brick or two more (and heck, its pretty cheap)
Powerful stuff, very earthy, nice texture, no subtleties wasted, straightforward and robust (feels like I’m praising myself, haha). This shu has it all, you want to go for a walk in the woods, after a heavy rain, without moving, drink this, it will take you places.
I bought a sample of it along with 2012MGH1203 imperial ripe and 2011 MGH 1104 ripe. I find it has more refined smooth notes than other two. Its my second day of resteeping. I lost truck how many steeps I made maybe 15. I usually start with 10-15 sec and up to 30 sec max
Dry – Sweet, sort of juicy/fruity hints, mellow earthiness.
Wet – Sweet, woody(close to what damp white pepper smells like).
Liquor – Dark Burgundy.
1st 40secs – Slightly sweet with hints of wood that mellows into some medium bodied thickness. It becomes, bread/yeasty(good) with wood notes that lingers with a mellow sweetness.
2nd 35secs – Sweeter and thicker up front with a more present earthiness that is reminiscent of yeasty bread. It feels cleaner as it goes down and becomes sweeter but retains some of the wood notes in the aftertaste.
3rd 35secs – Sweet and thick with some bread yet earthy-woody notes that are slightly more complex up front. As it goes down, it has a slightly more juicy persimmon like tartness that lingers in the aftertaste.
4th 45secs – Sweet, woody and earthy with strong woody notes up front. As it goes down, it wears some of the complexity from before but seems faded and woody taste is more apparent and lingers with some sweetness.
I bought a cake so I drank this one and set it aside to keep trying before I decided on the final notes. This Cake CAN deliver some sweetness and complexity, however it does it when brewed shorter times only. Even then, I felt like four steeps was the maximum you can get out of the tea before it looses its power.
I’m not a fan of this cake, I read the previous notes here and I have to agree that it does seem to be a LOT like cheaper bricks of Shou. In fact, I feel like this tea walks and steps over the line to be more of a Heicha tasting tea rather than a Shou. It has too much woodiness and slightly dries your mouth. If you go for stronger steeps you are going to get an overly woody and slightly bitter tea. Its an OK tea, but not for the price.
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