The dry leaves smell faintly sweet. The smell isn’t strong so I can’t really tell what kind of sweet. But it is pleasant. After a quick rinse, the leaves smelled like sweet tobacco. No fish though so we’re good.
I love the color of tea juice pu-ehr seems to make. Such a delightful dark ruby. I want to like this type of tea simply for that reason. Still no fish so that’s good. Not as fragrant as the last (and only other) pu-ehr I’ve tried but sweet… I can see raisin and maybe fresh cut hay?
Taste wise, this is remarkably inoffensive. I had always heard things about pu-ehr’s taste and my try of the fish pu-ehr (okay, not REALLY fish) pretty much confirmed the horror stories. (Well, not about the nails and bird feathers and cigarette butts because it was loose). So I was preparing for something I’d have to learn to like or look at with a different mindset to enjoy. I was all prepared to tell myself “No no, dirt is a GOOD flavor”. But I find I don’t have to. This is good without having to add qualifiers or adjust my thinking.
Smooth, sweet (but not so much like there is sugar in it though there is maybe a hint of that on the tail), a little dark/wild tasting at the end… maybe hay, maybe fresh, healthy dirt (you know, the rich dark kind with earthworms – and I need to stop that train of thought before this becomes the earthworm tea to me… and it might be too late), maybe some kind of fruit glaze – rum raisin glaze or something. Can’t quite peg it.
I can see the similarities between this one and the fish one I had previous. The sweetness is very similar as is the general expansion of flavors as I sip on it. But this one is much milder and the flavors blend together a bit better without any fish taste so unlike the last one, I don’t have to have multiple steeps before I figure out if I like this. I do. It’s good. I’m not sure if I’m going to be driven to ordering it when I finally place my Samovar order, but I will enjoy this sample.
Thanks to takgoti for showing me pu-ehr doesn’t have to equal fish!