400 gram Menku Gifting Raw

Tea type
Pu-erh Tea
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Earth, Mushrooms, Smoke, Stonefruits
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Edit tea info Last updated by ScottTeaMan
Average preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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From Mandala Tea

This is one amazing cake of raw pu’er! We are so happy that we came across it while we were in China in ’08 and had a bunch shipped back to the US. Since that time, the flavors have really opened up. And to think that it will deepen even more over the years!

We like that it’s lighter compression has not only made for faster aging, but that it’s just so much easier to pry the leaves apart without unneccessarily breaking them.

This raw cake makes up a beautiful brew with a nice warm, amber color, a smooth green tea flavor and a slight hint of camphor and smoke in the aroma.

Also available in 1 ounce sample by choosing the one ounce option in the above drop-down menu!

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3 Tasting Notes

2816 tasting notes

Finally I decided to break into this cake that I purchased 3 YEARS AGO (after trying a sample) and am just getting around to trying now. What remarkable self restraint I have!

So the rating on this just reflects my personal opinion and not my expertise in pu-erh. I feel like I’m still a noob so don’t make fun of me. ;)

This tea is almost 8 years old and it is showing some signs of darkness as well as a dark gold tea liquor. When I tried to break a piece of the cake off it seemed a bit dry and crumbly, so I wonder if it’s aging well in my apartment. Harumph.

I am doing 5-7 second microsteeps of this. I actually ditched the first two steeps and steeps # 3 & 4 are fairly woodsy and smoky with a definite bitterness in the finish. Strong! You can still taste the sweetness and the green vegetal notes of the tea.

Steeps 5 & 6 are mellowing out. Smoky vegetal notes are retreating and there’s a pleasant apricot flavor I’m picking up with a sour finish. This is a very energizing sheng and I can feel my energy lifting. I have to say young sheng gets me wired like no other tea I have found.

After the 8th steep, this is mellowing out quite a bit and becoming more brothy and fruity with a bitter/sweetness but the energy feeling still remains. Do you know how you feel when you jump into a pool of cold water? It’s kind of like that. Very interesting stuff. Maybe I’ll revisit this again next year. ;)

200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec

i’m excited to get through more of my samples so that i can break into my cakes haha


I’m trying to resist buying a lot of cakes :)


same…trying to get through the samples so that i can get better about buying a sample and then trying it to be able to decide if i want a cake faster. So far i only have um 4? cakes…6? lol


Between cakes and bricks I have quite a few, I’m not too optimistic they are going to age well in the Bay Area however.

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619 tasting notes

Backlog: I got a small amount of this tea on my last Mandala order. Some of the older raw Pu-erh’s have a good energy buzz and yesterday I needed that.

Dry it smelled really mushroomy . I had to let my cat Amber smell the bag to see if she would like it like Chairman does. No deal. She was not interested. Darn!

I used 10 grams with 8 oz. Two quick rinses. First brewing was really strong. Only 15 sec at 200F but it had a strong woodsy, mushroomy flavour. A bit of smoke. I could detect the stone fruit in there as well. A very robust cup. Not my favourite but okay.

2nd infusion was for 20 sec. Already the smoke was becoming less as well as the mushroom.

By the fourth infusion it was much more to my taste. The stone fruit coming through much stronger with only light mushroom notes and hardly any smoke left.

I had a cup this morning too and it keeps getting better.

This tea does have good Cha Qui. Yesterday it helped pick me up and keep me focused. I am finding the hearty shengs seem have the better Cha Qui although for each sheng the energy is different. I prefer not to stick a rating on this one right now as my tastes change over time and it could become a favourite. For now I am finding it a bit strong but next time I have it will use less tea.

Flavors: Earth, Mushrooms, Smoke, Stonefruits

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