First try with this aged puerh. Using tap water, small porcelain gaiwan, 2 grams of tea, and 60-75mL water with each infusion. Water is just off the boil.
Dry leaves smell of sweet rich soil.
First a flash rinse, then 20 second first infusion: sweet, earthy, anise, a hint of herby/spicy but no bitterness. The liquor turns my golden shino cup to deep red-orange.
30 seconds 2nd: sweet, earthy, thick, liquor and a little bitter
30 seconds 3rd: sweet, earthy, little bitter
30 seconds 4th: still sweet, earthy, no bitter, bit of fruity
45 seconds 4th: sweet, earthy, little spiciness/resinous but not bitter
60", 60", 60", 90"—color lightening, still sweet, mellow, earthy, bits of caramel and raisin or plum
2’, 2’, 3’—starting to lose it, heading towards sweet water. Going to try one more at 5 minutes—and there is still something there, even earthy and sweet coming forward despite having just eaten a mint. It’s not strong, but not quite just sweet water yet. Nice pu!
The big question I was trying to answer with this order from Nada was how much better aged puerhs are than my current young shengs and shus. While this is a very smooth and pleasant tea, I can’t say that I love it 5 to 10 times more than some of the lovely but quite inexpensive young pus I’ve gotten from other sources. It’s definitely smooth and mellow in a way that has no parallel in my young shengs, but it is approached by the better of my young shus, and the young shengs have other attractions like smokiness and umami that are absent in teas like this.