Leaf Type: Pu-erh
Where to Buy: Teavivre
Aged Pu-erh tea is created by secondary-oxidation and post-fermentation tea. This type of Pu-erh tea is referred to as ripened, or cooked, Pu-erh, which has a rich, mellow and earthy flavor. Unlike many other teas which should be consumed shortly after production, such as green and white teas, Pu-erh tea can either be brewed immediately or it can be stored and aged for many years, much like a fine wine. Most Pu-erh teas are classified by the year they were produced and the region they were grown in, much like many wine vintages. In fact, when it comes to Pu-erh tea, the longer it is stored and aged properly, the more complex the flavor and the more valuable the tea gets. Many aged Pu-erh teas are served in Chinese restaurants after heavy meals, as Pu-erh tea is known for it’s ability to break down fat, also making it a great weight loss tea!
Learn more about this tea here.
I was a little afraid to try this Pu-erh, as I worried it might end up tasting a little too earthy for my palate. It was the name of the tea that frightened me … “ripened aged” usually says to me “very earthy.”
But after unwrapping the individually wrapped tuocha and inhaling deeply, I noticed only a hint of earthiness to the aroma. In fact, the aroma of the dry leaf is very indistinct, with mere insinuations of an earthiness.
The flavor is more earthy than the aroma of the dry leaf would suggest, but, I am not finding it to be TOO earthy. Perhaps it is because beneath that earthy overtone, I taste this underlying note of delicious caramel-y sweetness. And even the earthiness here I find to be very interesting, as it seems to interchange with a deep, woodsy kind of flavor.
Overall, this has a very rustic kind of flavor to it … very masculine. It is very smooth and mellow, with no bitterness whatsoever and no astringency either. After my first couple of sips, I added just a little bit of turbinado sugar to see how that would affect the flavor and it ended up giving the caramel-like sweetness I mentioned earlier a very molasses-y kind of taste … very nice indeed! I like how that molasses flavor marries with the masculine flavors of wood and earth. This would also probably taste wonderful as a latte! Might have to try that sometime soon!