Temple Stairs Loose Ripe Pu'er

Tea type
Pu'erh Tea
Pu Erh Tea Leaves
Mineral, Pastries, Petrichor, Vanilla, Caramel, Wet Wood, Wood, Earth, Sweet, Dates, Spices
Sold in
Loose Leaf
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by Jason
Average preparation
Boiling 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 8 oz / 250 ml

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22 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Sipdown 8 of 2015. Sample. Purchased 5/2014 – Finished 12/2015. I have had a few Ripe Pu’er. Of the few that I have tried this is my favorite, but I am not sure I am going to be a ripe pu’er...” Read full tasting note
  • “Despite the time of night, dinner was heavier than I usually eat, and I was craving some pu’erh upon my return home. Of all the pu’erh currently sitting on my countertop (inventory and organization...” Read full tasting note
  • “Thanks, Garret, for the sample! An initial rinse of these dark leaves reveals a very fresh, cool scent that smells like sweet dough and mineral. There’s also a nice scent of petrichor, the smell of...” Read full tasting note
  • “I have been drinking this tea all day and finished off the rest of my sample in the gaiwan. I had it in the morning, went shopping for a ton of house things (boxing day sales, hurrah!) had some in...” Read full tasting note

From Mandala Tea

“Temple Stairs” – a 2013 blended ripe pu’er

Morning arrives soon and with it,
the monkey mind.
In this moment, I’ve this tea -
a training ground upon which I find my center.

We are pleased to present yet another Mandala Tea exclusive ripe pu’er. This creamy and smooth two leaf blend was created using material that was spring-picked and ripened in 2012 and 2013.

Not only were both pickings from plantations that are pesticide free, but the two growing areas (Bada and Mengsong) are far from any cities or air pollution. This is 100% pure tea and some of the finest ripe tea available. Teas from these areas are famous for their uplifting nature as well as their qi raising goodness.

As this tea warms your lower dan tien (in laymen terms – the “energy bank account”), you will note hints of cocoa in aroma and taste. Flavors of sweet root vegetables with hints of dark brown sugar dance on your tongue alongside the clean and well-rounded essence of minerals.

A rich and creamy treat in a cup, this tea will lift you up gently and then place you lovingly back on the ground, better for the experience.

We also note that the leaf was expertly cared for in the process of fermentation, yielding a perfectly ripened leaf with full integrity.

Climb the Temple Stairs and find your center.

About Mandala Tea View company

Company description not available.

22 Tasting Notes

694 tasting notes

Sipdown 8 of 2015. Sample. Purchased 5/2014 – Finished 12/2015.

I have had a few Ripe Pu’er. Of the few that I have tried this is my favorite, but I am not sure I am going to be a ripe pu’er fan. I can’t get over the rubber taste I get out of it. For this one I did about 4 rinses and then started drinking it. What I did like about it was that it was creamy and it made me relaxed really relaxed. The flavor was slightly spicy/mint?


sipdown 8 of 2016? but you’re doing it in 2015? heh


cheater! (i kid of course)


I started counting only thinking I would “sipdown” 2 or 3 teas before the new year, but looks like I got a little carried away. I will have to edit to 2015 and start from zero tomorrow:)


at least you’re getting somewhere!

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1812 tasting notes

Despite the time of night, dinner was heavier than I usually eat, and I was craving some pu’erh upon my return home. Of all the pu’erh currently sitting on my countertop (inventory and organization time!), this one jumped out at me, since the description sounded a bit dessert-like.
This will not be a full review, just a record of happy stomach, happy Spencer, and happy tea.

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306 tasting notes

Thanks, Garret, for the sample!

An initial rinse of these dark leaves reveals a very fresh, cool scent that smells like sweet dough and mineral. There’s also a nice scent of petrichor, the smell of the air when it rains. A very faint hint of vanilla whispers by.

The first infusion brings out more aromas, this time of sweet cocoa and hooka smoke. The infusion is a gorgeous dusty rose color. The flavor is very delicate and sweet. It doesn’t have the mustiness of a lot of ripe Puer teas. There’s a cooling sensation or hui-gan that stays in my mouth long after finishing the sip.

After the second infusion, not surprisingly, I’m getting rose on the nose. I felt something very “rosy” about this tea. Apparently it’s not just the color. By this infusion, the brew is a deeper color, reddish. The flavor is not as sweet this time. It’s got a bit of wood or leather quality to it now, but it is still very smooth and enjoyable. It really leaves a lasting taste in the mouth. There’s a very buttery flavor that coats the gums. You can lick it off of them and taste it very distinctly, an interesting quality I’ve never noticed in a tea before.

The third infusion is rich and again somewhat sweet. It’s mellow. This is the cleanest tasting ripe Puer I have tried.

I pushed my 4th infusion a little bit longer to see what this would taste like with a stronger brew. I’m not noticing anything different. It has consistently good flavor. In fact, I think it tasted better when brewed a bit more delicately.

This is a very enjoyable Puer tea and a milder one. Some ripe Puer tea I’ve had that was mellower tasted bland and uninteresting, but this one is truly relaxing and shines in its subtlety. This is exactly the right kind of tea I’d need to relax after a long day.

Flavors: Mineral, Pastries, Petrichor, Vanilla

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 4 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

Your pleasure is my pleasure. Thanks for writing up your thoughts on this, my friend. In regard to your gongfu question via email – you are on the exact track. There are no rules. Following ones heart and being with each sip is, in my opinion, the most important part of gongfu anything :)

You’ve got this. You always have.

with gratitude,

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1186 tasting notes

I have been drinking this tea all day and finished off the rest of my sample in the gaiwan. I had it in the morning, went shopping for a ton of house things (boxing day sales, hurrah!) had some in the afternoon, before dinner, and now I combined 3 steepings for a mug before bed. This tea has staying power! It is also delicious, woody and fresh, calming and good. Most pronounced is a woody flavor to me, with a tiny bit of caramel sweet coming out. Just a bit though. Mostly fresh, wet wood after the rain. I am digging this, and am very happy I still have some mini tu’s of this tea! Oh, and these last 3 steepings combined have led to a much more pronounced sweet flavor, smooth, mmmmm perfect for before bed.

Loving Mandala’s puerhs! If I ever let myself buy tea again (still working on sipping down teas/samples for the new year) I might add a bit of this to my order. Thanks Garret, for the free sample!!

Flavors: Caramel, Wet Wood, Wood

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84 tasting notes

First cup was much lighter in color than the second; maybe because the leaf rested in between.
Tastes smooth, sweet and like slightly leathery/earthy caramel, with aroma to match. There is a very gentle tart-like juiciness that lingers after drinking. Mellow and lovely.

Will save the leaves to steep again later.
I say this every time, but think this is my favorite ripe mandala pu’er sample so far – so gentle. :)

Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

i had mini tuo couple days ago. So good. nice leaves, not chopped. i liked it even more than loose Temple Stairs


They look so cute too. :)
How many grams are those?


Ah, just saw your review! Same amount


5g. i just reviewed with pics;)


Thank you!
By the way, do you ever use your goldfish gaiwan for puerh? I wanted to ask you if it is 150 ml to the top of the rim where the strainer holes are or to the very top.


Oh wait, I just looked at it again on ebay and the description below the top picture says 130 mls. :)


I think allowing the leaf to re-hydrate helps in the brew.


mrmopar, I was thinking that since this is loose already it wouldn’t make much difference. It did a bit though, so you are right that the leaves must have plumped up after sitting. I noticed more in the color than taste but that is likely because I am not so familiar with the tastes yet. :)


yeah I try to let any puerh sit for 20 mins or so ater the wash. I think it brings a bit more to the table, er I mean cup in the end. Glad you liked this one! You are now on a journey..


Thanks! ;)


No need to thank me I learned this one from a friend a while back. Always happy to share.


@calie, it is 130cc but I measure out 100. I love this gaiwan. So sturdy. If I ever find it in 100cc wouldn’t think even a sec. I like to use it when I’m sampling. My Yixing is still young and stealing flavors. So porcelain is pretty neutral . If I’m just drinking not sampling I use Yixing . I do see the difference.


Thank you, boychik. I am thinking of getting that one – it looks nice and is a good size for me I think. I just realized that my favorite cup holds just over 4 ounces which is about the same size.. all along I thought it was holding 8 ounces lol


caile, all I can say is I constantly using this gaiwan . It has good feeling when you hold it. There are others w/diff designs on ebay or Aliexpress. Try to get the same shape. Some if them have different sides where you grip it and not very comfortable and leaves get stuck inside. I got it fr rebeccali . Good seller.


Sounds good! This will be the one I’ll get. :)

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518 tasting notes

So this time I had this, it actually was the Loose version. (The tuocha version didn’t exist on here, and other reviews were for the tuocha, so I added my reviews here.)


Yum yum yum

It’s a nice energy, without too much of a buzz. A calm energy today.

So tasty.

I was sad when it faded.


It’s always a good sign when you are sad that the tea is over :)


So, what’s better…the tuocha or the loose leaf?


I liked them both. I didn’t really compare them, and this was the end of the loose I have. I did buy a cake as well. That’s how much I like this. Mini Tuocha is sooooo convenient.

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278 tasting notes

Now that I can fully express my love of shous, I decided to brew this one up.

Method: rinse 10-10-10-15-20 and dump. Steep 20-25-30 and drink. 5 g, 4 oz, 200 degrees

I think I finally found a shou method that works for me!!!! SO EXCITED! I am seasoning my TeaVivre pot in this tea, so I decided to drink some also. I’m feeling all relaxed and mellow. Had a nice lunch with friends downtown. I have a pot of shou simmering with my yixing on the stovetop. All my pups are happy and spry today. Life is good!!!!!

This tastes like honey and caramel. I may not even needed quite so many rinses, but I was making some for the seasoning, and it all worked out. So happy!!!!

5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML
Whispering Pines Tea Company

Wait, your love of shou’s?! When did this happen?! :D


Like yesterday, Brenden. Keep up, will ya! :p


Paging Dr. Sheng…


I’ve been told it’s okay to love both sheng and shou.

Whispering Pines Tea Company

^This is the truth. ;-)

Whispering Pines Tea Company

But don’t tell sheng that! :D


A mix between the two is easy to do. A little sheng and toss in some shou will make for a happy you. What can I do as it is always true. A sheng a shou it’s all some puuuu….A small Haiku…..for you…

Lariel of Lórien

I like shou, but mostly by default.


Lol, this thread was very funnney! And yay for shou love and happiness sarsy <3


My name is Dr. Sheng. Please make a note of it, Fairycakes :p

Me? Love Sheng AND Shou? It just seems so… wrong! LOL

Really, mrmo? Do you mix them for real? I love your poem. :)


You name is Dr Sheng? My gastroenterologist name is Dr Shou, but when asked he didn’t know anything about the health benefits of Shou puerh. True story.


No way, Allan!!!! Shouldn’t a gastroenterologist know all about shou???? Especially one NAMED Dr. Shou?


Apparently not. But that is really his name.


So I’m trying Temple Stairs for the first time, and I think I agree with your method, Sarsonator. I dumped the first two, and started with the third, and dumped that about a third of the way through. The fourth was much better for me. Lesson learned.


I think it just depends on the shou, Cheri. Some do great with one rinse and some seem to have more of a fermentation flavor (as AllanK calls it) to get past. Glad it worked out for you :)

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3294 tasting notes

This is a sample from Sil, which she received as a sample from Garret.
It’s a sip down cheat, because I have more of this in my collection, but I think this is an older version, so I’m counting it!

Anyway, I haven’t drank any Pu for a LONG time, just because I was too busy to appreciate it. So FINALLY I get to drink some Shu, & it’s so nice to have the time to enjoy it! Rich, sweet, creamy. There’s a vanilla mouth feel, a deep richness, sorghum, cedar, leather…stuff like that!


Bout time for shou…..

Terri HarpLady

I’ll say! So glad I quit my damn job at the school & went back to my preferred lifestyle :) I missed you guys!


Good to see you back!


We missed you too!


MMm temple stairs! Welcome back Terri :)

Terri HarpLady

Thanks you guys! Love & Hugs all around! :)


Yah she better not make the “Hiatus” as long the next time…

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1758 tasting notes

Picked this one out this morning almost at random, it was the first puerh I came across today. This tea is incredible, end of statement. It is sweet and a little bit earthy. The fermentation flavor is just barely noticeable, barely. I would call the sweet note a dates note, but that is just an opinion..

I brewed this tea twice in an 18oz teapot with 6.3g leaf and boiling water. I steeped it for 30 sec, and 30 sec. The second steeping I put in a thermos to bring to work.

Flavors: Dates, Sweet

Boiling 0 min, 30 sec 6 g 18 OZ / 532 ML

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294 tasting notes

So I started a session with this one last night. And again the first thing I smelled on both the dry and wet leaf was pond water. I steeped this one up for the 30 seconds and holy darkness. For some reason I was expecting this one to be light. But it’s was almost black.

The liquor smelled just like the wet leaf, pond water, something I don’t remember Special Dark’s liquor smelling like. I’m thinking I definitely should have rinsed this. That first cup tasted similar to how it smelled, like pond water and mud. I ended up dumping half the cup. The next steep was a little better. Less pond and mud taste (I guess earthy in a wet way). Now I’m starting to get other notes, there’s a slight sweetness, and something not quite earthy but I’m not sure what it is.

The third steep, most of the pond scum smell and taste was completely gone and for the next three steeps the flavor continued to mellow and mingle and confuse but please my taste buds. My tongue is not refined enough to pick out flavors, but once I hit the third steeping I ha begun to relax into this puerh. It started to feel safe, like it was trying to show me a preview of could come if I continue down the rabbit hole that is puerh. Now I really think that a good rinse or maybe two would have eliminated those first two awkward cups and put me right into this sweet spot to begin with.

The 6th or 7th steep seemed a little bit weaker, and since by this point it was nearly 2am I decided to cold steep the last steep overnight. I strained and tried it first thing this morning, and detected a surprising note that I really wasn’t expecting and don’t know where it came from: grapes. This cold steeped and lightly sweetened taste like grapes and a tinge if cocoa, some of that almost earthiness, and I want to say browned sugar. The other notes were there in the hot cups but just seem more identifiable this time. But I don’t remember grapes last night, yet there they are this morning.

I still find it so amazing that a straight tea can have so many different notes, without adding any flavors.

Boiling 0 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

Sorry you didn’t have such a good experience…so funny cause I get none of that “pond water”, but I used to hate pu’erh at the beginning…I think you are doing great in your tasting and evaluations so far ;-)


Hi! So excited to see you diving in with shu pu’er! The rinse is a must. Matter of fact, in China, they do two rinses of the leaf to start a sesh with ripe tea, 3 if it is tea nugget pu’er. That will help your brew significantly.

If you were here, I’d have you in to our tea room and we’d sit down and brew us up some great tea times!

Keep up the good work, you really are doing great. Never hesitate to ask any questions if I may be of help, ok? [email protected]


TheTeaFairy I actually did have a good experience! The 3rd steep on was good, even if I had a hard time describing it. And the first two cups taught me that rinsing is a must, and that Special Dark is just the exception to the rule!

I used to have turtles that my sister and I caught (“rescued” according to us) from the (retention) pond in our old neighbor hood. And the smell of pu’erh remind me of the smell of those turtles. Like wet slippery mud. Thankful after the first cup it didn’t taste like it smelled.

And thank you, I’ve been trying, it’s so hard for me to put a finger on what I’m tasting or smelling sometimes, and when I do it’s usually something zany (like chamomile tastes like celery to me).

Garret That makes a lot of sense, especially since the first two cups were the only not so good ones. I actually just started a session with Imperial Dark, rinsing it twice first, and seems like it did a perfect job washing the pond water away.

I wish I was there! Thats something I’ve been wanting to do! I feel like having a session with a professional would teach me so much about how brew as well as to help me identify what I’m tasting.


Oh, I said that only cause of the “pond scum” you mentioned…I’m glad your experience got better and better :-)

And yes, garret, I would pay to have a tea session with you!! Learn directly from the master :-)

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