The dry leaf is long, wiry, and twisted. I noticed some are pretzel shaped. I am amused. The leaf is very dark with some lighter touches. It smells fresh and grassy. Used 2g of tea and below boiling water – same as with the other puerhs. 10 second lightly swirling wash that I poured out.
1st drinking steep – 30 seconds. The wet leaf smells of grass, hay, and seaweed. Also catching a bit of earthy dirt. That’s what I picture when I think puerh. I have never noticed smokiness in any of these samples. The first sip is not what I expected at all. It is very light and green. In fact the first cup is too light. I can tell there is real flavor here that just isn’t coming out using my method of brewing.
I decided to increase the steep time on the 2nd cup to 1 minute. The leaf smells strongly of seaweed. The brew in the cup is honey/caramel colored. Sip – ah, there is that musty, rich soil flavor I knew was here. Because I only used 2g it is not overwhelming. The 3rd and 4th cups, also at a minute, are the best yet, very even, mellow, and rich. With the 5th cup a coppery taste and color develops that continues through cups 6 (2min) & 7 (3min). Cup 8 (4 min), the color is very light and clear in the pot. There is still an amazing amount of flavor here. Cup 9 (5min), musty, earthy, sweet. Starting to get weak. Cup 10 (15 min) The copper notes are back but loosing depth. Still good. Time to accept these leaves have given their all.