Recieved this 5g sample in my 5 for 5 from Verdant. Although I’ve been enjoying sheng for some now , I have just recently, after reading so many positive Steepster shou reviews, summoned up the nerve to try another “ripe” pu. (Around 15 years ago, I recieved a sample of ripe pu, and I mean RIPE! I thought for a second upon smelling the wet leaves, that I was down wind of a Billy goat. RIPE!) If this is an acquired taste, I don’t think I’ll get there.
This shou, however, is gentle, smooth, earthy and interesting. I brewed gong fu style and rinsed the leaves well (actually I soaked them in tepid water for a minute to loosen the chunk a bit, then rinsed as directed). Earthy and complex, I found notes of moss, peat, wet wood, damp earth, and a savory note (perhaps the olive oil referred to?) I lost count of my steepings, but I really appreciate the complexity of this shou through many steepings. The earthier notes gave way to chocolate, raisin, herb and spice, proceeding through a cooling mouth feel in the later steepings.
If this tea becomes available again, I would purchase it. I won’t rate shou until I gain more experience, but thank you Master Han for this gentle shou.
Flavors: Camphor, Chocolate, Mushrooms, Olive Oil, Peat, Raisins, Spices, Wet Earth, Wet Wood