Ahhh, I made this a different way, and it actually is the smoothest, softest tea I have ever had I think. I used an odd combo of times for prep:
Two 25 second rinses with boiling water.
First steep – 45 seconds with boiling water.
Second steep – 1 minute with boiling water.
Basically I was kind of doing Verdant’s western brewing, but was worried that the 2 minute steep might be a bit strong for my liking.
The first steep was very smooth and just like silk. No fishiness this time! Some earthy tones. There was a mild, rounded sweetness to the cup, caramelly and yummy, however, I didn’t pick out much variation in flavor overall…untrained palate woes :(. I just made the second steep so I’m hoping the extra few seconds might bring out a few different nuances of this tea.
ETA: The second steep is a tiny bit stronger than the first, I still prefer the first steeping time of 45 seconds and latter steeps will probably be this time as well.
I’ll find out how to make you just right for me yet, pu’erh! This is very very close. For smoothness, this is amazing. I almost tried this in my gong fu glass pot today, but wanted to try this way first. I have enough left probably for a small infusion before this sample is out. Then I might break into my giant brick, just need a bit more experience first I think.