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mrmopar said

pu-erh of the day. Sheng or Shou

Just wanted to start a discussion on this to “open” other ones onto what we enjoy, the deep mysterious tea from the east. Please share your experiences with others.

1101 Replies
mrmopar said

Tonight is a 2009 Boyou ‘0509’ ripe cake. This is my first Boyou cake and I find it to be very smooth and sweet with a dark brew almost like a cup of coffee. I am really enjoying the smoothness of this tea. It is made from material from 2008 and I would guess pretty heavily fermented from the color of the brew. I think this would be an excellent tea for a first timer. There is none of the fermented taste that you find in some other shu. This tea has been allowed to breathe to get rid of this aspect. brew at 210 with a 10 second rinse and a 10 second steep on the first cup. Overall a pretty good tea.

looseTman said

Great idea! I’ve subscribed to this topic. Thank you.

Is this ripened pu-erh old enough to a.) enjoy now or b.) is it likely to significantly improve if stored? If b.), about how long should it be stored to achieve an obvious improvement?

Since shu is not ripened, about how much longer should it typically be stored/aged before brewing compared to ripened pu-erh of the same production date?

mrmopar said

Yes this on.It is old enough to enjoy now. The flavor may deepen over time some. This gave me an almost unsweetened chocolate notes on the third cup. I am going to try and post something every other day or so on this. Everyone feel free to post on this.

I have been told it is good to rinse ripe pu-er a couple of times so am not surprised your third cup assuming you didn’t rinse was a great one. My understanding is the 3rd, 4th and 5th are the choice steepings and that has been my personal experience as well.

Dexter3657 said

I am most interested in this thread, please keep posting in it. :)) I am really new to the wonderful world of Pu’erh. I know I love it,I thought I was going to be a shu kind of girl, then tried Mandala Tea Silver Buds Raw 2011 and was blown away. Confused now. I also don’t know how to choose a good one. There are thousands of them out there. It is very intimidating for someone just getting started. I look forward to reading about the ones you are enjoying.

looseTman said

Great review especially for being new to Pu-erh.
http://steepster.com/teas/mandala-tea/37871-mandala-tea-silver-buds-raw-2011

gah, I need to try that one! I have the 2012 cake that I haven’t tried yet.

I was on the same boat too – I had shu and thought it was good, but sheng sounded interesting. I was looking to buy a cake and everything I read said “new people should get shu first” but wow, sheng pu’er tastes just magical!

Dexter3657 said

I have the wild monk sheng cake (http://steepster.com/teas/mandala-tea/29244-wild-monk-sheng-puer) that I haven’t tried yet. I’m waiting for a day that I can spend some time with it. Sheng is definitely a special tea. I see several cakes in my future, including the 2011 Silver Buds. I haven’t given up on Shu, I think they are different teas and there is room in my cupboard for both (I’m DYING for the Special Dark that Graceatblb has been raving about to appear on their site – I will place an order once it becomes available)

mrmopar said

Hi Dexter3657 feel free to post on here also. I think this will “educate” us all as we constantly learn on this subject.

Bonnie said

Having confidence in who you’re purchasing from eliminates a lot of bad puerh in my opinion. Knowing that Garret at Mandala Tea is doing his own pressing and aging, you know what you’re getting and it’s good. A few other vendors are well connected to quality sources. Mrmopar here knows how to spot fakes…a good topic for discussion…because some people sell fake puerh with phoney labels.

Cody said

I just wanted to chime in and note that “fake” doesn’t necessarily have to be bad. Lots of smaller factories sell their cakes with the bigger brand names on the wrappers for extra profit and popularity, but use decent base leaves in the cakes. It’s not always the case and it’s usually a risk, but tiepai (“pasted brand”) cakes can turn out to be a bargain. Like you said Bonnie, trustworthy vendors help make sure you’re getting good fakes (and good tea in general), but sometimes you can score with the unknown brands.

For example, http://steepster.com/teas/white-2-tea/37402-2005-cnnp-zhong-cha-green-label-tiepai. I still need to post my notes on this one, but it’s mature and complex for it’s age, smooth and cooling in mouthfeel, and presents a nice, subtle huigan (returning sweetness).

sansnipple said

I seem to have lost nearly all of my (previously ravenous) desire for shu lately just as the weather warmed and spring/summer arrived, so I guess shu/ripe puerh is more of a seasonal cold weather winter comfort tea for me. Though sheng is good anytime, I think today I’ll brew some of Verdant’s 2006 Big Leaf Sheng, the dry leaves just smell so good, like fresh cut pine wood.

The biggest difference between raw tea and ripe tea is the taste. Because of the manufacturing process, ripe tea has the mild flavor, and the raw one has some strong taste.
Info from http://www.orientalteastore.com/puerh-tea-c-6/

Usually I prefer sheng/raw over shu/ripe but there are a few exceptions. Right now I’m drinking Special Grade Green Cake Xiaguan Puer Tea 2011 Raw by Dragon Tea House which is rather nice. Not quite what I was after so I might balance it out with some shu next. Puerh is personal for me, I have to be in the right frame of mind to drink it and even then I have perfect puerh for different times, each one to match my current mood and feelings. Right now I have forgotten which one I’m craving so I’m just going to have to sip around until I find it. :)

mrmopar said

I got the Xiaguan’ old tree’ and the ‘jingmai’ mountain shengs in. I haven’t tried them yet but the ‘old trees’ will probably be gotten into by this weekend.

Javan said

Right now I’m sipping on a 2003 Mang Zhi raw puerh provided by Zhi Zheng tea shop based in Jinghong, Yunnan. (website at http://www.zhizhengtea.com/about-us.html). Tea is a lovely deep orange-amber, still has a bit of astringency, with a rich flavor. It is earthy and enjoyable. It came with their older tea sampler. It goes well on our cool, foggy, north coast of California day.

mrmopar said

Thanks everyone for contributing! Lets keep it going. I hope to learn from each of you that post on this topic.

graceatblb said

I am currently indulging in a brew of my favorite pu’er from Mandala, Special Dark. I may have to limit my intake of it because I went through 4oz in less than a month. I will probably take a break from the Special Dark and drink the sample of the 2000 Langhe Menghai shu that Garret sent with my order. I know nothing about this tea aside from what Garret wrote on the sticker…and that it’s from the year the Devils won their second cup.

mrmopar said

Just had a Dayi 2005 100gram toucha. Still has that “punch you in the face” bite in the first infusion. The green taste is still strong in this one . It has been dry aged I believe as much of this remains. The leaves are still showing a lot of green with the red starting on the edges. It became less harsh after the third infusion and became nice and easy to drink. I think this one with the strong qi will age very nice in proper storage.

Great review.

I may be sampling one of our 2005 Yiwu AGED Sheng. Stored 8 years in Yiwu by the producers. Hand aged; hand processed; never saw a machine or a chemical. It’s one of the finest aged I have tried. I sell each bing to shops for around 300-500; I may sell 10g samples…anyone interested?

Nicholas.

Uniquity said

Though I do not enjoy puerh very much yet (I am working on it) I really enjoy reading this thread. Way to go pu lovers!

mrmopar said

Well we are out to change your mind. I thought I only liked shu pu-erh but that has changed.

graceatblb said

Right now I am brewing up my 2nd steep of Golden Gong Ting from Mandala. It’s like an almond kick in the face.

Mike admin said

haha I know that feeling ;)

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