I brewed this up in my tiny tea pot the other day. I did an initial 30 second steep and had to dump it. Holy moly. I’m sure some people would like that first steep, but it was far to smokey for me. I then did a 1 min steep, and was very impressed. The smokiness toned down, and I was left with a dark brown-red tea with a lot of flavour, no bitterness, and practically no astringency. I actually quite like this!
Yesterday I re-used the leaves for another 1 minute steep, and although the tea was a bit lighter, there was still a tonne of flavour. I kept sipping it, trying to figure out what was missing. Cinnamon and orange, apparently! The only other dark (oxidized?) puerh I’ve had is Silk Road’s Golden Phoenix, so I associate the citrus and spice with the rich smokey flavours of the tea.
If you’re just getting into puerh, and aren’t sure about the smokiness, I’d recommend a white puerh, but if you’re willing to play around with the steeping a bit, this is a nice one that I think will take some flavour additions nicely. I’ll be adding some dried orange zest and pieces of cinnamon to some of this to try to recreate the flavours in my mind. :)