In a free sample graciously sent to me by AprTea there was a pouch simply called Cooked Puerh that contained two mini-tuochas with the explanation that they represent two random tuochas out of the four that they offered. So, I decided to figure out what the heck am I drinking and reviewing. The rappers looked different (good!) but when I unwrapped them both tuochas looked really similar (bad!). And they smelled identical too (awful! am I that bad at telling puerhs apart? – apparently I am).
Nevertheless, after trying it I am pretty sure I am drinking the sticky rice puerh. As bad as I am I think I would be able not to confuse it with the pure puerh and jasmine and rose puerhs: those are three other possibilities. As a side not it seems that the company uses the same exact kind of puerh for all of their tuochas and only the additives differ.
Now, tuochas in my opinion are typically made for a casual drinking, so I skipped the gaiwan and prepared this tea Western style, 300 ml and about 2 minutes for the first steep. It came out quite decent. The sticky rice part is not overdone, the tea smells strongly of rice, mushrooms and dark damp soil. The taste is cheerful, energetic and simple, with Chanterelle mushrooms, dark honey, apricot and rice. Unfortunately it does not hold that well and the subsequent steeps were way less dynamic and even simpler, with sticky rice and languid decay notes dominating.
It’s not bad by any means and the first steep is rather enjoyable, especially in comparison with typical puerh tuochas and not judged against puerh cakes. I would rate it even higher if this tea could retain its vitality beyond the first steep.
Flavors: Apricot, Honey, Mushrooms, Rice, Wet Earth