2018 Bu Lang Mountain Cha Tou Ripe Pu-erh Tea Nuggets

Tea type
Pu-erh Tea
Ingredients
Pu Erh Tea
Flavors
Blueberry, Burnt Sugar, Candied Apple, Candy, Dried Fruit, Honey, Hot Hay, Molasses, Mushrooms, Paper, Pleasantly Sour, Rose, Stonefruit, Sweet, Warm Grass
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Caffeine
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Certification
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Edit tea info Last updated by Kawaii433
Average preparation
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  • “I was a bit hesitant opening the bag with this tea: it looked suspiciously like one more gimmick of trying to sell an unfinished product on its novelty. I never had tea nuggets before. I should...” Read full tasting note
    92

From Yunnan Sourcing

These “Cha Tou” ripe pu-erh tea nuggets ripe tea are from a wet pile batch done entirely from Bu Lang Mountain (Menghai County) tea leaves harvested in 2017 and wet piled in 2018*!

These are sweet and creamy, with nice complexity and can be steeped many times!

Cha Tou is a kind of tea nugget that forms naturally from the pressures of compression and heat that occurs during the fermentation process. Typically during fermentation process to make ripe pu-erh there is a pile of tea about 1 meter high. It is kept wet to allow the fermentation process and the pile is turned every few days to allow for an even degree of fermentation, moving the tea from the bottom of the pile (where it is hotter and wetter) to the top of the pile where it is cooler and drier. The “cha tou” are the leaves that ball up and get stuck together. The best cha tou are ones that have not been over-fermented and are smaller in size.

*For those of you who purchase this tea during the year of 2018 expect that there will be a fairly strong wet pile taste throughout 2018, but one that will fade gradually as tea ages. Remember pu-erh increases in palatability and complexity with age! In Chinese we refer to this as 越陈越香.

**some of these will have some grey or white spores on them. If you are squeamish about spores/bacteria don’t buy these!

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1 Tasting Note

92
225 tasting notes

I was a bit hesitant opening the bag with this tea: it looked suspiciously like one more gimmick of trying to sell an unfinished product on its novelty. I never had tea nuggets before. I should admit that I was totally (and pleasantly!) mistaken.

This tea has a surprisingly pleasant dry leaf aroma for a shu : fragrant hay, stone fruit, old books. The first steeps ( I had it Western at 212) were mild and very sweet. I was able to pick up stone fruit (including peach and cherry), dried apples, lake water, honey, warm hay, and molasses. So yeah, this ripe puerh unexpectedly tasted very much like a fruity oolong – only at the tail the familiar earthy bitterness of shou made a brief entrance.

The latest steeps added mushrooms and rose to the nose and mild rose, marmalade, rock candy, burnt sugar, blueberries, gooseberries and some general sourness to the palate. The taste was somewhat reminiscent of Liu Bao, especially the long aftertaste.

To summarize, this is a ripe puerh that with a pleasant and complex fragrance and aroma. It evolves with subsequent steepings. It possesses a unique character. It has a good long aftertaste. And last bot not least – these tea nuggets are incredibly convenient for easy picking just the right amount of tea to brew.

If this tea has some weak spots I was unable to find them yet. It was one of the most enjoyable ripe puerhs that I tried so far.

Flavors: Blueberry, Burnt Sugar, Candied Apple, Candy, Dried Fruit, Honey, Hot Hay, Molasses, Mushrooms, Paper, Pleasantly Sour, Rose, Stonefruit, Sweet, Warm Grass

Rich

I love this one.

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