Brewing guidelines: Standard parameters when I brew ripened pu-erh in my 11 OZ Yixing.
First I do a 15 – 20 second rinse with near boiling water. Then for each successive steeping I add Stevia to my 8 OZ clear-glass teacup (thus, typically not added to the teapot).
……….1st: Near boiling, 0.5’
……….2nd: Boiling , 1’
……….3rd: Boiling , 1.5’
……….4th: Boiling~(poured usually right after the previous steeping, so the teapot and water are as hot as possible)~, 2’ (if it’s the final steeping, then sometimes longer)
……….If 5th and/or more: Boiling, < If I do more than 4 steepings, I basically add 0.5’ for each. >
Overall: NOTE: I hope to ‘streamline’ my reviews going forward, so, hopefully, they are a little less technical and dry (and perhaps even stilted), and a little more organic and experiential (and hopefully, flowing); this somewhat new approach to reviews is a kind of metaphor for where my life is headed right now, and is one reason why I write reviews: as a kind of time-capsule of where I was in my life at that time.
This tea was a sample included in a pu-erh sampler pack I bought at the end of 2013. I have been brewing up lots of different ripe pu-erh teas over the last few months, usually over the weekends, steeping a different one each day in the hopes of determining which ones I like the most. I have not been as systematic about my overall analysis as I used to be (especially as I was with green teas); for example, mainly due the the time and effort involved I don’t compare/analyze the dry and wet tea leaf of ripe pu-erh as I have with other teas classes.
Although I am enjoying ripe pu-erh, somewhat sadly most all of the ripe pu-erh teas I have had basically taste the same to me (so far). I believe, over time, as my pallet gets more exposure to ripe pu-erh, the differences will make themselves known to me.
I finished the last of this yesterday, and all I really remember about this tea is that I liked the flavor a little more than the others. I don’t know, perhaps the word ‘Golden’ in the name is doing an unconscious ‘number’ on me. I don’t think so, though. The flavor seemed somewhat richer than the others, and the leaf was somewhat larger than the others. I will say this: I prefer the pu-erh with the larger leaf, if anything, because then it won’t slip through the holes at the end of my spout on my Yixing!
As I don’t really have a benchmark to measure from as of yet, I plan to leave off the rating on any pu-erh teas I review.