pu-erh of the day. Sheng or Shou
I chose a Shu today. Noble Mark Ripe Pu’er Blend 2011. This sample was included with my Mandala order. Wow they are 2 for 2 with the samples. Dry, I thought this wasn’t going to be strong enough for me. There wasn’t a lot of the fishy, musty, earthy scent on the leaves, I was a bit worried that it wasn’t going to be to my liking. I gave it a quick, 5-10 second rinse – and now wished I had tried that.
As stated above, I’m new to this. I don’t have the palate or vocabulary to tell you all about it. If this is what good pu’erh is all about, I’m sold and I really liked it before. This has all the flavors that I would expect in a shu, it’s big and bold, but it’s not harsh and “beating you over the head”. There is no fishy, no smelly feet, no barnyard, just crisp clean earthy, maybe even some woody goodness. I really like it.
Yes that’s a good one! Garret always sends you some good samples with every order. I have his “phatty” cake that I have stored in the pumidor that will probably grace my yixing soon.
Phatty cake is on my wish list. I’m just really confused as to how to know what I like and don’t like. So far so good, I haven’t run into an “ewwwww I can’t drink this disgusting” pu’erh yet. I seem to like all of em.
Enjoying a steep from a 1999 sheng menghai beencha. It’s a delightful tea as there are notes of peaches and very little bitterness.
6 grams to 160 ml
I pulled out a YunnanSourcing sample shu pu-erh today. It is a CNNP 2000 ripe Lincang cake. I notice they still have it available at http://yunnansourcing.com/en/ripepu-erh/867-2000cnnplincangripecakepu-erhteacake357g.html. My wife and I both enjoyed the deep, earthy aroma and molasses/orangy type notes in the tea. It does penetrate my nose with a touch of camphor, and is very “mellow” in taste. Quite nice.
6 grams to 160 ml in an yixing teapot with 212 F water for 15 – 20 seconds. I combined the first 4 steepings.
Tonight is a 2008 Xiaguan “dream of the red chamber”. Got this from jasetea on a whim to expand my horizons. dry leaf smells almost ‘fruity’ when broken from the toucha. I washed for about 10 seconds, steeped the first serving in a gaiwan for about the same time. This has been stored well it has no sharpness left in it. Very nice and almost sweet on the sides of the tongue. Pale light green brew,very nice to just sit and inhale the aroma. Not an overpowering one by far. Very nice and easy to drink. I think this will just get better and better with age.
Currently drinking a steep of 2008 Shou Fuhai 7568. Frankly, I am not enjoying this tea very much lol.
6 grams to ~ 150 ml
So much tea…so little time.
I have been loosely following along, thank you kindly for the invitation.
I have a question for you and for the thread:
Do you prefer aging AUTUMN or SPRING tea?
I would think Autumn since it is the time for “aroma” but I am new to aging and would age any sheng Autumn or spring. I have some of both currently in the “pumidor”.
I definitely prefer Autumn teas to Spring.. they are deeper and less “green” tasting and less floral; .. more “herbal;” and as mrmopar says above more aromatic.
What are you pu drinkers using to steep? I tend to use my gaiwan for pu but it is very time consuming and kind of messy so I need to have a lot of free time to do that. Does anyone do a modified western brew? I have considered getting a smaller ‘gong fu’ teapot as a compromise between gaiwan and western style but I am reluctant to buy more teaware especially if I won’t use it regularly. Once people find out you like tea, they love to give you teapots. :)
I’m with you…not always having time for a gaiwan, but wait! I often combine the first two steeps right away..bam,bam then take time to taste steeps 3-5 (usually the best). Another method thats fast is a finum and mug. Puerh in the finum and lift it from the mug when steep time is done. BTW spent leaves make good cold brewed tea.
Good point. I have noticed at least a couple Steepsterites combine multiple brews but have yet to do so myself. I also have an infuser basket that I am sure I could use in a smaller cup (or just use less water) so I don’t get too saturated and can still re-steep. Thanks Bonnie!
I use my little yixing teapot and combine steeps (2-5), (6-9), (10-13), into a larger glazed teapot, and use that to pour into teacups throughout the day. I’m right now sipping on steeps 10-13 of the 2000 CNNP Lincang shu that I described a few days ago. Still quite a pleasant tea.
I actually use an yixing teapot reserved only for pu’s. Personally, I don’t find it too time consuming.
While traveling, I use this Taiwan express tea pot, just push the button and drink it. It’s not optimal, but it’ll do the trick.
I sometimes use the gaiwan but often use a thin walled clear heat resistant mug or rock glass with glass infuser which makes lifting the tea out after a set brewing time easy and not too messy. At work, I often use tea filter bags.. I fill them at home and mark them in soft pencil with the tea type and weight
Currently drinking my mystery tea from Mandala. It’s a 2000 Langhe Menghai shu. I’m on my 3rd steep. It’s very woodsy and sort of piney. I’m really liking it so far. And I only need to drink a 1995 pu to complete the Devils Cup years.
Last night was a Menghai 2005 7572. This tea is dark on the first couple of brews, an aroma of an almost peat moss like. Leaves were dark all the way through in color. It had an almost raisin like taste with a good deal of sweetness with absolutely no bitterness or astringency. A well aged shu that the years have been kind to and mellowed out very much. Since this is what the factory produces a large amount of I am sure it is blended with a good variety of different leaf. This cake is sometimes called the “purple sky” cake and very nice in most of the different years I have had the recipe from. A very consistent cake from Menghai.