It’s always exciting to sit down with this tea and we didn’t waste any time getting it into the gaiwan to start the tasting. The initial aromas of the dry leaf were subdued, hints of very subtle smokiness, some dry hay, and date fruitiness were teasing us from under the surface of the silky leaf. Sure enough, as soon as the boiling water hit the leaf a powerful, but not booming aroma delights the brewer! The liquor is a glistening brilliant amber color and the aroma contains a subdued smokiness and fruitiness that opens the eyes with its stoic vigor. The flavor was so complex and difficult to describe, everything was so integrated, woven together like a masterful tapestry of flavors and mouthfeel. The fruitiness of the plum melted into an ancient log-cabin smoke, not fresh, but a centuries-old cabin whose smoke-infused logs are slowly releasing eons-old aroma from fires long extinguished. As we moved to the second infusion the ancient leaf gave us a little more bite, more brightness but remained amazingly consistent in profile throughout the session. The beautiful tapestry of flavor and mouthfeel never dropping or adding elements, but keeping the picture crystal clear throughout the tasting. The only bad thing about a tea like this is that once it’s gone it can never be replaced. Exquisitely unique, take your time tasting this delight!
This ancient tree sheng Pu’er tea is a delight from start to finish. The large long leaves struggled to fit in the gaiwan, but a quick rinse restored enough suppleness to allow them to curl up into our brewing vessel. The aroma from the dry and wet leaf was subdued and delicate and the first infusions yielded a gold liquor with a light pink hue. The first few sips revealed a light smokiness mingled with plum notes couched in mossy, woody flavors. Later infusions led to a deeper orange/gold liquor color but the flavor was steady, with a thick, silky mouthfeel. Flavors of this tea lingered for ages and offered a sensationally refreshing experience. The quality of the raw material and the processing is readily apparent in every sip and a glance at the brewed leaves confirmed this. Lustrous and silky in appearance and soft but sturdy to the touch, this is a tea to be enjoyed for many infusions.