Wild Orange Pu-erh

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Pu'erh Tea
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Carrot, Celery, Fishy, Mushrooms, Orange
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From Chicago Tea Garden

These tiny oranges known as clementines in the United States are hollowed out and filled with tea, then aged. These were obtained in Guandong, China in 2005 and since then have been aged in man-made pu-erh caves in the United States. The leaves when steeped have a zesty orange smell – the tea is overall smooth and malty with hints of orange, especially if you use part of the rind while steeping.

Note: 50grams will get you 3 tiny oranges.

About Chicago Tea Garden View company

Chicago Tea Garden is an online tea shop committed to providing extraordinary teas and tea education to tea lovers and those new to the leaf. Chicago Tea Garden's co-owner Tony Gebely also runs the World of Tea Blog [http://www.worldoftea.org] and Tweets at @WorldofTea.

19 Tasting Notes

911 tasting notes

I’m a little nervous about this tea but it seemed too weird not to try so I tossed it in my CTG order. I do love oranges. Moldy oranges that have been stuck in a cave for years though? Not so much. Full disclosure, I bought this tea with the expectation of not liking it so this has a bit of a science experiment aspect to it.

I truly have no idea how to do this, but CTG mentions a slight orange taste when “part of the rind” is used. I figured that meant to brew with mostly just the tea, so I broke apart the little orange, dumped the tea in my pot and then added bit of rind in there, too.

The leaves smell a bit like dirt. Dusty dirt. With a slight hint of clean freshness. Like the smell of an attic that no one has been in for 20 years, but when they were up there two decades ago, they dusted with Pledge. So yeah, that’s a bit weird. And not entirely pleasant. But not entirely unpleasant either. Just… interesting.

After a good rinse, things started smelling like pu-erh normal. In other words, like a barn. This particular barn had a good bit of sweet hay smell going on and the dirt smell was of clean, wet dirt.

The taste is nicely mild. One thing I tend to dislike about pu-erh is that the barnyard sweetness can be so thick. It makes me feel like I’m drinking syrup made of farm and it’s just too rich for me. But this doesn’t have the syrupy super-sweetness to it. Very similar taste profile, just not as thick feeling. I don’t know how much orange I pick up from the taste, but there is a cleaner ending than what I’m used to and I’m going to attribute that to the orange rind. As it cools, the sweet barnyard dirt taste moves to the front of the sip and some dry hay starts coming in on the back. Still has a clean but mostly sweet end.

The second steep (30s) brews up very dark but otherwise is pretty much the same as the first steep. There’s a little more sweetness-cutting cleanness (which I’m guessing is because the orange rind is staring to soften and steep a bit more) but that’s about it. I do like that increase though.

The third steep (45s) is tilting back a bit towards barnyard especially on the tail end, but overall it is very similar to the first two steeps.

Overall, this isn’t bad. It’s not going to make me into a pu-erh fan but it’s one of the easiest drinking cooked pu-erhs I’ve had; it’s rather mild and inoffensive. Not something I’ll avoid finishing off but not something that I’ll need to get more of once it is gone.

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I felt the same way about this and added it to my order for the same reasons! Haven’t tasted it yet, though.

Paul M Tracy

I have one of these heat-sealed superballs sitting in the pantry too. Maybe I should have tried this one before the sticky rice. Expectations may be too high now.


Cooked pu-erh and I have an understanding – it tries not to taste like fish and I don’t make faces or call it names when I try it. After that, it’s a bit of ‘agree to disagree’. So I can’t say how this one really rates if the drinker knows and likes this type of pu-erh in general. If that makes sense? The sticky rice is the exception to that general disagreement so I’m thinking raw pu-erh and I would get along much better.

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3311 tasting notes

This is a tea I had my eye on for quite a while, and then I almost missed out on getting to try it at all! Thanks to The Purrfect Cup I was able to share this with my puerh-loving friend tonight!

First, the unique presentation is awesome! I guess I didn’t stick my nose right on this, but I didn’t get any fishy aroma. Maybe these have aged enough now for that to have dissipated. I put the leaves and the “lid” of the orange in my little gong fu pot. I did a quick rinse and then a short steep of just over thirty seconds.

Tasty! The orange flavor has definitely mingled with the tea, and this is a lightly earthy puerh to me, not very horsey and not fishy. The orange peel flavor is quite a nice accent. We made five steeps so far, and we are really enjoying this! Thank you, TPC, for the generous sample!

Sandy says she just bought some of this on the west coast, so I will try to find out where we can obtain more!


PLEASE do! I was so bummed that Chicago went out of biz then to top it off when I went to snatch one of these up they were gone. :( Would love to get my hands on one if Sandy knows where to get them. :)


Glad you liked it!! :)


I’ve seen pu’erhs like this on ebay. No idea how the quality is though.


my local tea shop, Aroma sells tangerine pu-erhs. Maybe they’d be willing to break up the assortment of 8 if you called them. http://www.aromateashop.com/store/index.php?act=viewProd&productId=84

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421 tasting notes

Fantastic! I was lucky enough to get a hold of this when Tony was closing up his shop. I am so glad I did! This has some serious flavor. My first cup was straight up pu-erh. But so far infusions two and three have had a hint of the orange flavoring from the bit of peel I added in while steeping. So good!

I wrote a longer post about it here: http://wifeywoman.teatra.de/2012/06/11/say-goodbye/ :)


I’ve had these before and they ARE good!


oh my gosh that is the most adorable teapot!


@Amy – SO GOOD!

@Amanda – thanks I got him at Teavana for a sweet deal!


Oh no! I didn’t know they were closing, and had this on my wish list for a long time. Oh well, you snooze, you lose!

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328 tasting notes

This vendor offers a great deal on samples. For $3 bucks including shipping- you get a sample of tea. So I was pretty suprised when I opened my package and received a small orange filled with pu-erh tea – all for $3. Warning – the orange was a bit moldy-well the orange and the tea have been sitting in a cave since at least 2005…

Onto the tasting- this was my first pu-erh. I rinsed the leaves first and steeped for 30 seconds as recommended by the vendor. Suprisingly, this tea is mild w/only a subtle (and I mean subtle) orange flavor. The earthiness is very slight and no bitterness. Also, suprising, is that no sweetener is needed for this tea (and I love my sugar in tea). The orange flavor was more sweet and did not have the usual tang associated with citrus…

According to the vendor, this tea is good for multiple steepings. Next time, I am going to try a longer steeping time to get the more traditional earthy flavor expected from a typical pu-erh. Unsure if I am going to purchase a larger amount but I am definitely pleased and am looking forward to trying more pu-erhs…


Sounds cool — orange filled with tea!


looks like i should find some puehr’s that aren’t shipped directly from china :D


Definitely different and aged in the US….

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2977 tasting notes

I broke the orange open and steeped 1 tsp of leaves with a bit of peel for 30 sec in about 6 oz boiling water. I forgot to rinse it, and it smelled a bit too funky to drink so I discarded that steep, and went straight to steep #2 (also 30 sec.) Much better! There’s a slightly funky scent overtop, but mostly it’s just earthy with a hint of, well, decomposing hay? Maybe I should just call that “malty”…?

It’s drinkable, but not my favorite thing ever. I was hoping for a bit more orange scent or flavor. Next time I will add more peel and see where that gets me. I’m tempted to add a bit of honey to see what it bring out, but I’m sure there are some pu-erh purists that will jump all over me…

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decided against the honey (for now) but paired it with a biscuit & orange marmalade instead. Not bad. I think I prefer this tea as an accompaniment rather than a solo act.


3rd stepp – 45 sec. Added a tiny bit of vanilla honey. I think this brought out the orange a bit (or could it be lingering on my taste buds from the marmalade?) and added a slight floral note. I like it better than the 2nd steep, but it does seem a bit more drying (tannic?). Not sure how that could be but there you have it.

Geoffrey Norman

Ooooh, man. I so want this.

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141 tasting notes

This is really unique from presentation to the tea itself.

Once you cut into the shrink-wrap around the dehydrated clementine, you get a brief whiff of earthiness and a quick flash of ocean- OK, it’s briefly fishy. I have a friend that describes pu-erh as smelling and tasting like basement. This isn’t that bad, but it’s definitely mossy.

Once brewed, the fish dissipates quickly. The taste is smooth and slightly sweet. I pick up a lot of “veggies” but this isn’t what I’d call vegetative. It’s more like very dull impressions of carrot, potato and mushroom in that order.

While the clementine packaging is a nice novelty, I couldn’t sense any involvement in the fragrance or flavor. This isn’t a citrus flavored pu-erh by any means. It is, however, a solid example of a nicely aged tea.

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If you add the dried orange peel to the steep, you can get a citrus flavor.

Paul M Tracy

I have a little left, so I’ll try that next time. Thanks!

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64 tasting notes

Smooth and Earthy
With a unique citrusy huigan

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This was an unusual find but I actually quite liked it. It was smooth and mellow with just a hint of a citrus aftertaste. My boyfriend even liked it and he sweetens everything he drinks :p

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Just tried this the other day. I really enjoyed it and I usually don’t ‘love’ pu-erhs, but maybe I just haven’t tried the right pu-erhs.


LissaMarie, what kind have you tried? Cooked? Raw? Amber?

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328 tasting notes

Infusion is a pretty copper color—not as dark nor as opaque as I would expect from a pu-erh. Substantial and full-bodied, earthy with fleeting orange notes. This could grow on me—

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18 tasting notes

I forgot to log this :X

Welllll…..initially I loved this tea, it has a very nice hay/orange quality, but only after the second or third steep. The first was nice, but I don’t care for the first steep on Pu anyways. But once I got to the bottom of my particular orange, the taste got kinda bleh. I might rebuy, but not before I buy the Black Golden Bi Luo!

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