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The dry and (mostly) the wet leaves have a sweet and bread-like aroma, oddly reminiscent of fried vegetable tempura. The tuo cha come apart nicely in the cup. I rinsed the leaves twice before my first infusion, which was 90C for about 15 seconds. The taste and aroma are melon-like and round, light on the palate. Despite the lightness, there’s a twinge of deep sweetness on the tongue that I tend to associate with older shou puer (I’m not really sure of the age of these, although it probably is written somewhere).

The second infusion (90C for 20 seconds) became dark, heavy, and thick, just as I would expect from a shou puer with relatively small leaves. The taste is still a little sweet on the tongue, reminiscent of dried apricots and raisins.

The third infusion (90C for 10 seconds) is still quite dark. The mouth aroma has become more in the range of charcoal and damp moss, which is very pleasant. The sweetness fades here.

I’m certain there are at least 3-6 more infusions in this tuo cha, but I had tasted too many teas that day already and needed a break.

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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A tea geek (and also general geek) in Burlington, Vermont.

I’m drawn to the beauty of a steaming cup with snow falling outside. When I see a tea leaf, I see the long road and hundreds of hands that have brought it from the sun and soil to my pot.

I think that tea can be a way of life.

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Burlington, VT

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