Ripened Aged Pu-erh Mini Tuocha

Tea type
Pu-erh Tea
Ingredients
Pu Erh Tea
Flavors
Earth, Leather, Mushrooms
Sold in
Loose Leaf
Caffeine
Medium
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by Scott
Average preparation
Boiling 1 min, 30 sec 6 g 7 oz / 221 ml

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91 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Mini tuocha, please help a fairy in needs of relief! I ate too much. When I do, puerh always comes to rescue. I don't know how it can be so soothing, but it just is. I don't have digestion problems...” Read full tasting note
    88
    TheTeaFairy 412 tasting notes
  • “I has a happy! Tomorrow is a birthday in the family, so my son and his girlfriend, and my godson are all staying here for a few days. Today we had the birthday pizza, and my son told me to make...” Read full tasting note
    ashmanra 1856 tasting notes
  • “For part of my Christmas my son put a program on my computer called Kerbal Space Program. You design and launch spacecraft. So far I been able to attain a good circular orbit and today I even made...” Read full tasting note
    85
    ks6 1382 tasting notes
  • “And there we go. The second steep completely opened up the leaves and a much better cup results. Why do tuocha get packed so tightly? Are they "superior" in some way to fermented pu-erh which isn't...” Read full tasting note
    93
    jimmarks 325 tasting notes

From Teavivre

Origin: Pu’er, Yunnan, China

Ingredients: Shredded leaves compressed into birds nest shape and individually wrapped

Harvest time: Made in May 2007

Taste: A complex mellow and rich flavour

Brew: One tuocha for 8oz of water. Brew at 212 ºF (100 ºC) for 1 to 2 minutes (exact time depends on your taste – a longer time will give the tea a stronger taste and color)

Health Benefits: Pu-erh tea is a great fat busting weight loss product. It is known for centuries for its ability to help digest fatty foods, increase the metabolism and reduce cholesterol levels. This tea is also good for those who are looking for long term weight maintenance. Eating healthier foods and drinking this wonderful tea, especially after meals is the key to a successful diet. It also contains polyphones which attacks free radicals, which protects you from various diseases.

About Teavivre View company

Company description not available.

91 Tasting Notes

70
1598 tasting notes

I don’t think I wrote a review for the first time I tried this nice tea from Teavivre. Anyhow I cleaned the first steep for about 30 seconds to a minute. Then i steeped the second time for 30 seconds! The brew was a thick, black tea. The scent is earthy and like wet fall leaves. There was a hint of fish to the scent… However, I burnt my tongue drinking this! I was too excited. _

Anyhow the taste was surprisingly light and airy, which I wasn’t expecting due to the liquid’s consistency. The taste was like wet fall leaves mixed in with some sweetness. There is a lot of depth to this tea. There is more lingering in the back of my mouth when I taste this tea. I can’t seem to describe it though. I used a large mug for this tea, and will try another steep of this later. I am sure more flavors will pop up. I didn’t taste any bitterness in this tea.

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 45 sec
Bonnie

If you want more flavor steep this a few minutes. You will get a right nice earthy brew and if you want to, add some sugar and if you want cream for a latte.. This tuocha is fine for that kind of cuppa.

Charisma

Thank you Bonnie! I will give that a try :)

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88
6770 tasting notes

2nd unfusion:
Tar Black
aroma is easier to handle
Taste is completely different!

This time…
somewhat coffee-like, still malty but a different sort of malty, not sweet – a little more woodsy, more earthy…and leather-esque.

Still pretty good but completely different from the 1st infusion!

kOmpir

2nd and follownig 2-3 infusions were different from the 1st, it surprised me too… it had a strong walnut aftertaste… which reminds me that I need to write a note for this one as well…

TeaEqualsBliss

Oh Walnut! Neat! I have a few more ‘nests’ might have to try 3+ infusions next time :) Thanks!

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70
58 tasting notes

Alright, so this is my first time making pu-erh, and it was mostly a disaster, though I think I was able to salvage the experience a bit.

I don’t have anything similar to a gaiwan, and at this point, I don’t know what I would do with one if I did. So, I was forced to steep the tea “western style.” My plan was to use two pieces/cakes for a bit over 8 oz of tea (which was probably my first mistake). So I put two pieces in one teapot, poured boiling water into it to let it steep, and then transferred the liquid over to a separate teapot for serving. I read something that said you should first “rinse the leaves,” so I did that. After that:

First steep: was terrible. I basically used two pieces (~11 g) of tea with a little over 8 oz of water, and steeped for two minutes. It tasted HORRIBLE. It was extremely bitter, and essentially tasted like mud. I’ve had pu-erh before (prepared by someone who knew what they were doing), so I knew that I had done something wrong.

Second steep: Using the same leaves, I poured in more water (maybe ~12 oz?) and steeped it for only one minute. This was noticeably better, but still a little more harsh than I remember it being.

Third steep: I used MORE water (~13-14 oz) and steeped it for 45 seconds. This was when it started getting pretty good, much more similar to the smooth earthy-leathery taste I remember from previous times trying pu-erh.

Fourth steep: Same as the third. I started noticing it get a bit weaker, and I was getting a bit tired of the whole process, so I stopped here.

So. That was my experience. By the third and fourth steeps, it tasted excellent, so I’m sure that this specific tea is excellent. Either way, I’ve yet to try a tea from Teavivre that wasn’t spectacular. I got this as a free sample from another order, so I feel bad for screwing it up, I kind of only had one chance. Oh well.

If any of you can see what I’m doing wrong, please let me know. I’d love to hear some pu-erh tips.

Flavors: Earth

Preparation
Boiling 1 min, 0 sec 11 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
K S

Definitely try with one toucha. I think I western steeped this for 1 minute for the first mug and 3 seconds for the second. I don’t remember but probably went back to 1 minute for the 3rd.

Kirlika

First, I have to say I’m certainly no pu-erh expert, in fact this particular tea is the only straight pu-erh I’ve had as of yet (though I’ve got a few samples at home waiting for me to try.)

That said, when I tried this one out I also didn’t have a Gaiwan so in the end I used only one nest for about 4-5ish oz of tea, a large tea ball and brewed it based on the Gaiwan timings… It worked like a charm.

I’ve got a gongfu pot now but I’m not sure if that will make any difference or if I should stick with my “tried and true” method for now :)

Scott

awesome, thanks for the advice!

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116 tasting notes

Today, is my 3rd foray into Chinese Gongfu brewing and my first with Pu-erh tea.

Per TeaVivre’s Recommend Brewing Guide:
Gaiwan 3oz / Tea: 1piece / 6 steeps: rinse(10s),10s,10s,10s,15s,20s,30s / 100ºC/212ºF

I selected this tea as it seemed to be a very approachable pu-erh that’s uncomplicated to prepare.

Method:
1 mini tuocha (6g – My Weigh Durascale D2 660 )

RO water re-mineralized with an Aptera filter http://steepster.com/teas/teaware/39532-puregen-aptera-alkamag-water-filter

Butiki 6oz. Gaiwan http://steepster.com/teas/teaware/39240-butiki-flower-gaiwan
TeaVivre’s Double-wall Glass Tea Cups http://steepster.com/teas/teaware/39708-teavivre-double-wall-glass-tea-cups

A Teavana Perfect Preset Tea Timer http://steepster.com/teas/teaware/39312-teavana-perfect-preset-tea-timer was used in the count-up mode to control the brewing time.

I improvised with what we had on hand. I used a classic Revere Ware SS Copper-bottom stove-top kettle to boil water. A cutting board served as a tea tray/desk for collecting water.

In lieu of a tea pitcher & a matching tea strainer, a Noritake Bleufleur Creamer pitcher 11oz. (Japan) http://thumbs1.ebaystatic.com/d/l225/m/m7U_-XkLDGw6vqi0oOJrD1g.jpg with a Finum brew basket http://steepster.com/teas/teaware/29177-finum-brewing-basket placed in the pitcher were utilized. Every two steepings were combined in the Noritake pitcher then served. The lid on the Finum helped to retain the tea’s temperature in the pitcher between servings. No sweeteners or milk products were added.

Results:
With Gongfu brewing, one can readily appreciate the quality of the leaves and their transformation. The 10-second rinse produced light amber-colored water and the mini tuocha was still solid. After the 1st 10-sec. steep, the solid mini tuocha changed to dark brown leaves that appeared similar to the richest topsoil. The liquor was transformed into a rich dark chocolate brown.

Impression:
The aroma was earthy and reminded me of a barn environment or of well-composted aged top-soil. The medium-bodied flavor was very smooth without bitterness or astringency. There was nothing objectionable about either the aroma or flavor. All six steeps were very consistent in aroma, flavor, and body especially since I was combining every two steeps in the tea pitcher before serving.

After sharing this Gong Fu session with my wife, I felt very relaxed. Both my wife and I found this to be a very enjoyable tea especially for a pu-erh novices like ourselves.

Using a tea like Pu-erh, that’s recommended to be brewed at 212℉, certainly simplifies gongfu brewing compared with teas that require a lower specific temperature. This point is especially true when one doesn’t have a thermo tea pot or kettle with a variable temperature control or presets.

Thanks to Angel Chen and TeaVivre for this very enjoyable free Pu-erh sample.

Preparation
Boiling 6 g 3 OZ / 88 ML
TeaVivre

Gongfu tea is as much about enjoying the appearance and process as the tea. Making tea requires a peaceful heart, I believe that brewing tea is retracing its process. And it can relax our heart and mind.

looseTman

Agreed, very well stated.

mrmopar

It’s a wonderful experience is it not. The brewing just puts your mind at ease with the simpleness of it.

TheTeaFairy

Great review, This is my favourite tocha, I always keep sone around!

TheTeaFairy

(I meant “tuocha” and “some” of course, damn typos!)

looseTman

“It’s a wonderful experience is it not.” Agreed!

looseTman

“Great review,” Thanks!
“This is my favorite tuocha, I always keep some around!” Very high praise indeed!

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520 tasting notes

What a cute little tea nub! I was a bit apprehensive about the pu-erh, but it’s hard to be nervous about something so harmless looking. You see, I’ve never had pu-erh before, or so I thought. Yet, the flavor is very familiar to me. It tastes like a Chinese tea house. Perhaps I have had pu-erh unknowingly because it tastes like the tea I used to get in dim sum houses. When I was young, my grandparents used to delight in taking me and my sister for “yum cha,” on weekends. It’s the Chinese version of brunch. There’s tea and greasy foods that are horrible for you. (Egg tarts!) I never paid much attention to what sort of tea my elders ordered when we ate at those dim sum places. What a young fool I was. I used to dislike tea, but I think it’s just because tea is brewed so carelessly in dim sum restaurants. I always enjoyed it when jasmine or chrysanthemum was on the table though. Flowers are tasty. Usually, some unknown dark tea was served. That tea tastes like this tea. I guess it must have been pu-erh. So all this time, I’ve been nervous for nothing. I’ve been drinking pu-erh since I was little.

I hear it’s recommended to discard the first steep, but I decided to take a taste before dumping it. hmm…not bad. Seems a waste to toss it out. I do prefer the second steep though. It tastes like rich leafy earth. It also tastes like weekends with my grandparents and other family. It brings me to crowded noisy restaurants with grouchy ladies pushing hot carts of food around. And pink table cloths. There are so many memories in this flavor. It feels wrong to drink it alone in the privacy of my home. I feel like taking my grandparents out for dim sum. My, usually, mild and jovial grandpa will fight you like a tiger for the check.

If I don’t drink pu-erh ever again, it won’t be because I don’t like it, but because I don’t want my associations with the flavor of this tea to change.

Anyway, I think I’m too emotionally attached to this tea to rate it objectively or even think about it in terms of flavor too much. Over all though, I think it’s pretty good. :)

Anthony Bazic

cute and definitely delicious! I love pu-erh and a touch of chocolate would certainly give it a lovely experience1

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98
171 tasting notes

My computer still isn’t working so I’m once again confined to my phone, which means this review’s gonna be short and sweet. This stuff is GREAT. Smooth, rich and earthy with chocolate and leather tones. My fixations in the world of tea change, and now pu-erh is the subject of my intrigue. The taste of pu-erh is quickly growing on me and I’m making it a goal to try more because it’s a fascinating type of tea. This is a satisfying cup.

Bonnie

Um! I just introduced my granddaughter to her first pu-erh’s this afternoon using a gaiwan and tea try.She loved it. I’m loving pu-erh’s too. This one is nice and rich!

ashmanra

I am out of this one and need to remedy that soon! This is the all around favorite at my house and several of the tea drinkers will ONLY drink this one if I have it around.

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84
810 tasting notes

Free sample generously provided to me by Teavivre. Thanks so much!

Preparation notes: 2 of the 4 enclosed tuo cha in 500 ml. water in my Breville at the below parameters.

Dry leaf: My only other run in with pu erh tea was with a Teavana blend roughly a year ago. It was a fruit blend, and in loose leaf form, not a cake, so I guess you could say this is my first authentic pu erh experience.

The tuo cha are small – maybe the size of a quarter, or slightly larger. The immediate scent that came to mind was fishy, which my boyfriend interpreted as food pellets. There were also notes of dirt. Very organic smelling.

Steeped tea: I opted toward the later steeping time with this one, and though it isn’t bitter, I’m thinking I might have gone a little strong and would probably dial it back next time. This brewed up a dark brown to black color which totally shocked me, even though it had been noted by others. I guess I just didn’t think it would be possible to get so dark despite the short steep time.

The predominant smell from the steeped tea is that of the hamster food pellets my boyfriend smelled initially. The fishy smell is displaced more toward the background, with hay and dirt taking the center stage. It smells a touch sour, too.

Surprisingly, given how dark it is, it doesn’t taste astringent or bitter. Just…strong, with a full mouthfeel. It seems like a midway point between black tea and coffee. The taste itself does have some earth on the swallow, otherwise, think a very strong black tea, with the accompanying maltiness and smoothness that it has when steeped properly, and you will have an accurate picture of what this tastes like as well.

I understand why people say that pu erh is an acquired taste. In my case the taste wasn’t the issue – it was the smell I’ll have to get used to. After my experience with Teavana I had written this type of tea off completely, but it turns that I may actually like them after all. I think further exploration is in order!

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec
TeaBrat

I had to giggle at “hamster food pellets” :)

Ninavampi

I completely agree… Taste of Pu-Erh is fine, the smell is what requires getting used to! (this from my first experience today)

JoonSusanna

@Amy oh – that description was courtesy of the boyfriend. I’m going to have to stop asking his opinion while I’m still drinking a tea, because once he says something like that it’s all I can pick up on for the remainder of the cup. Boys!

@Ninavampi – I just saw your tasting note on the pu erh – I am SO jealous of your dad for going to China and getting to pick out tea! One day I will go to there…

Ninavampi

I also want to go to China one day! : ) I think I might go crazy with the options!

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86
2537 tasting notes

Thank you to Teavivre for providing this sample for me to try.

This is a very mild and mellow pu-erh so it is perfect for beginners. It doesn’t have much of a noticeable smell. Perhaps I am weird but this seems a little bit too sanitary for me. The wet leaves smell a bit like wet dirt. The predominant flavor I’m picking up here with the tea is chocolate. I steeped it for 3 minutes with boiling water. It is certainly pleasant enough and very low in acids/tannins which is just what I needed today. I am not dying to have more but I have enjoyed it.

Preparation
Boiling 3 min, 0 sec

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974 tasting notes

Tea of the afternoon…..

I actually bought this tea to give to a friend, but I know she won’t mind if I sample it! I brewed this for a minute and threw out the first steep as kind of a rinsing phase. I can tell you that the smell was not great the first steep. I stuck with it and steeped for a minute the second time around. This time, I got something I actually did not mind the smell, and it was kind of chocolatey and tasted quite a bit like coffee. I am pleasantly surprised! I do see that I could be a real pu’erh drinker someday. While I did enjoy this cup, I don’t see myself drinking this kind of tea very often for now. However, a seed has been planted for sure. It is miles away from my first experiences with tuo cha from another vendor. Definitely an enlightening experience for me.

12 oz boiling water, second steep at 1 minute, 1 tuocha.

Preparation
Boiling 1 min, 0 sec
TeaBrat

If you want the rest of mine I will send them to you. :)

SimplyJenW

Nope…..I am keeping one more and giving the rest away to my friend who loves pu’erh! Thanks for the offer, though.

ashmanra

Oh, Amy Oh! I would take them off your hands if you don’t want them!

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75
124 tasting notes

The tuocha smells nice – subtle, just a little dark in some way. Not smokey – more like a sweetness of something like caramel.
Tastewise, I’m not digging this. My first infusion I only tasted something like wet cardboard. The liquor smelled much fishier as well.
I figured the steep time might need to be increased so I did a second infusion for 4 minutes.
The second steep was much more flavorful. It had a funny astringency (the cardboard flavor) but it actually worked when the supporting flavors came out (there is a creamy richness under this, like I added heavy cream or something and a nice cocoa flavor).
I had a really hard time rating this tea because it kept changing. I wasn’t wowed by it, but then again, I’m not a pu erh afficionado. I am going to keep playing with this one.

Preparation
Boiling 2 min, 0 sec

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