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I’ve been away for a bit. However, if anyone cares, I am now a tandem reviewer. With great pleasure and endless frustration, my dear father-in-law is visiting for a few months and will be teaching me how to properly evaluate tea!! He is a fairly well recognized actor who starred in the highest grossing Malaysian movie to date. Nonetheless, he is a kind old man who has tolerated a white devil son-in-law, therefore I hold him in fairly high esteem. He has (of course) been drinking Chinese tea for his entire life (>7 decades). I’ll try to be a good student. Anyway, onto the tea!

I humbly express a huge “thank you” to Angel for the generous samples.

Sheng Ancient tree Puerh

Dry aroma: puerh, not remarkable
Wet aroma: sweet, honey, freshly cut cherry or maple…Pleasant and exciting

Yixing small pot…208F 30-45 sec after two washes (substantial discussions with Chinese grandfather as to the reason, but OK)

First steep: (I’m going to go narrative from here on because the flow, as the tea demand it). The pre-drink aroma was pleasant if unremarkable, but the first sip was oddly delicious and a bit scary. My mind thought, “strange brew”, but I must have more. This is definately Puerh, but Puerh with a funny, not unpleasant twist. I couldn’t put a finger on the curiosity….therefore I had to wake my wife to translate for Mr Lim (my FIL) He did a lot of gesturing and loud talking to express himself. Turns out, he was saying “cats should be grass” “Mao Xu Cao” which translates into Orthosiphonius (Chinese herb). He was quite excited at this point.

The second steep was for three. My wife joined us in the evaluation. This tea is getting stronger and smoother. The partakers are becoming happier. An interesting thing happened at this point. My esteemed Father-in-law began speaking about the goodness, tastiness of the bitterness. I hadn’t noticed much if any bitterness, except for a little bite at the end. What I might have thought as a detriment, my father knew as an attribute…. New way of thinking and tasting….
He is correct. He has experience. I could explain the taste in terms of barkyness or mossiness, but I will simply say that this tea has everything you might expect from a sheng puerh, but it has a significance that appeals to the novice and is noticed by the expert.

This is a tea that should be tasted because it has some uncommon attributes that are exceedingly pleasant.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 1 min, 0 sec
Bonnie

How lovely to have people at home to drink tea with and who know what to look for. I drink alone most of the time which isn’t best. I hope your FIL has a wonderful visit!

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Bonnie

How lovely to have people at home to drink tea with and who know what to look for. I drink alone most of the time which isn’t best. I hope your FIL has a wonderful visit!

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Bio

My foray into Asian culture in general and tea specifically began about two decades ago upon meeting my future wife early in our university years. I call it my Sino-ification, but generally it took more than a decade to become an honorary Chinese at least in the eyes of my family. I am still casually referred to as “white devil”, “barbarian” and “big nose”. However, I am indebted to my Chinese in-laws and asian friends for instilling in me, among other things,a great respect and love of tea culture, and all of its nuances.

Over the years, we have had the great fortune to travel throughout Asia, particularly in Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong, and of course in Malaysia. Along the way always eating the local fare and drinking tea.

I am so glad to finally be connected to this site to further my knowledge and appreciation of tea.

Location

Lexington, KY / KL Malaysia

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