First review. A disclaimer. I KNOW NOTHING ABOUT PU-ER! (Don’t know why it’s spelled Pu-erh, Pu-Erh, Puer, Pu-er either). My background is working in a tasting room at a Winery, entering cooking contests, and international cooking. That’s it. I have a pretty good palate for THOSE things. I bring what I know about other things to tea and am learning new ways to think about tea as I progress. Nuff said. This explanation is given because this was a tea that took a lot of turns in reviewing.
I used my new PIAO I Glass top drop infuser and 3 minutes for each steep .
I did 1 quick rinse before the first steep. Raw the Shu looks like dark tan-bark. Really!
1. I poured on the water and let the steep go watching the liquid begin to lightly turn brown. Beep…pushed the button to release the water to the reservour below. The liquid is light honey colored and tastes like toasted rice. No earthiness, slightly salty and sweet. Really good and savory. Not a hint of grass or hay but maybe a shitaki mushroom sauteed in there. Super delicious.
2. Way darker color like whisky. Earthy scent. While steeping you can see the leaves begin to float and open pushing away from the solid bark mass. There is a slightly astringent finish and pepper on the tongue, linen and rust. No bitterness. Juicy and light. This makes no sense but it’s what I taste and smell. Oh, faint nutmeg also. I opened the top of my steeper and smelled the wet tea…arh…paint thinner! Whoa…no kidding!
3. This steeping released long-legged creatures moving around the steeping cylinder releasing all the tea flavors just for me. Eight long years from China to Colorado they were locked up waiting for this moment! Eh…timer went off…Really dark liquor this time.
Less paint thinner smell on the leaves! Lighter less earthy flavor. More astringent but still juicy and not bitter. There is a tartness which is like black walnut and an introduction of salt and smoke. Bless My Soul! I like smoke and salt. In fact…Hum…I have some gumbo in the fridge and think this would be a good finish after some gumbo and rice. Not during the meal but after. Very delicious Shu! I have loved all the selections from Verdant thus far! Find the new videos helpful to a rookie like me.
This is not a fancy review but MY review. It’s what I enjoyed this afternoon as a part of my life.