So I’ve participated in the last few curated puerh boxes posted by toby8653 and dug into one of these teas this week. I started this tea the day before yesterday and I’ve been steeping it out and taking progress notes several times since then. From the start, it was clear this came from a dense cake. 7g of material hardly took up any space in my gaiwan. The sample has a deep smokey aroma, so I’m prepared up front to get plenty of smokiness in the tea.
I give this a quick rinse and let the leaves sit to open up a bit before the first flash steep, which produces an amber liquor that tastes sweet with notes of tobacco and a hint of earth. The flavors are light, so I can tell the tea is definitely still opening up.
Some tannic sourness and astringency kicks in in steep two. I leave these and come back to the leaves the next day, and there is a very strong smoky aroma and taste to start. After a few more steeps, the taste becomes a bit more mellow and more defined with woody notes and a nice thickness. It’s still got a significant amount of bitterness and sourness going on, though.
I come back to them again today and the taste is significantly more mellow and balanced tasting, with a very long-lasting drying effect on the throat. This has been an interesting drinking experience, and though I gave this tea a couple of weeks to air out and pretty much flash steeped it every time, I’d like to come back to it after an even longer period of rest and to play around with steeping parameters, as well.
Flavors: Astringent, Bitter, Drying, Earth, Smoke, Tannic, Tobacco