Introduction to Pu’er teas
Pu’er teas are known as one of the most valued teas in the world, mainly driven by the complexity of its taste, aroma and the health benefits. It is also highly prized for its natural ageing process without the artificial accelerated fermentation used for other kinds of teas. In fact, many connoisseurs appreciate Pu’er as a living tea as its flavor enhances over time. Different from Whiskeys where ageing stops the moment it is taken out of the barrels, Pu’er teas continue to age and ferment naturally which makes aged teas taste different from younger teas of the same tree. In this curation, we bring 3 kinds of unique pu’er teas and a special tea that resembles pu’ers. Hope you enjoy them!
1. Lao Cha Tou ripe Pu’er, Yong De, Yunnan, China
Cha Tou is a tea nugget that forms naturally from the pressure and heat that occurs during the fermentation process. Typically during fermentation process to make ripe pu’er, the tea is piled up to 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 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.
Tasting note: The tea is young, fermented in 2015 and it is smooth with natural flower taste. Despite the young age, it has already lost most of its post-fermentation smell. The tea liquor is a clear and deep red-wine color.
2. Jin Ya “Golden Bud” Pu’er, Yunnan, China
Golden Buds pu’er tea are known for its young shoots being harvested during spring season, and hence giving it rich antioxidants and low level of chlorophyll in this early spring tea buds.
Tasting notes: This pu’er has a mild aroma, reminiscent of cacao. The flavor is smooth with a tinge of sweetness.
3. 2004 Menghai Ripe Pu’er Brick, Yunnan, China
The native area for Brick tea processing is Southern Yunnan in China. Tea Bricks ‘Zhuan Cha’ were most commonly produced in ancient China prior to the Ming Dynasty, and at one time, used as currency. From a functional perspective, they were easy to transport along the silk trade route and were thereby compressed. Tea bricks are made primarily from the broad leaf ‘Dayeh’ Camellia Assamica tea plant varietal and are blocks of tea leaves that have been packed in molds and pressed into block form. This dry-aged ripe tea brick is made in Menghai, where it is famous for ripe Pu’er because of the consistent standard of high quality teas produced from the area.
Tasting notes: Being suitably aged in a dry environment, this 12 years old pu’er is full-bodied and delivers a smooth taste with no musky flavors and a clear deep burgundy tea soup.
4. Chong Cha, Guangxi, China
While this is not a Pu’er, we would like to introduce this rare and expensive, found amongst the Guangxi minorities that is well-known for its cooling properties and higher nutritive value than regular tea. In Chinese it is called Chong Cha, means literally Worm Tea. it is basically a tea made of the droppings from these rare caterpillars. There are two species of caterpillar that used for production of this tea, Hydrillodes morosa and Aglossa dimidiata.
Tasting notes: A red brown colored liquid similar to pu’er tea, and while it sounds scary it does have a pleasant minty fragrance and a herbal aftertaste.
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Note: Many members have asked us about purchasing larger quantity of some of the teas we curate, unfortunately these teas are produced in small batches and often the better harvests have been pre-purchased by buyers. However, for smaller quantity – we are able to help contact the farmers directly and link them to you. Please contact us at: email@example.com.