Tea Trail 2004: Willow Grove Workshop Pu-erh from Verdant Tea

Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Pu-erh

Where to Buy:  Verdant Tea

Tea Description:

A uniquely clean shu pu’er with both warming and cooling qualities, a sophisticated musky profile, and a sparkling texture like fresh mint and basil leaf. . . .

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

The dry leaf of this Pu-erh doesn’t have a strong aroma, I would describe this as slightly musky/earthy, but not quite as earthy as I might usually experience with a Pu-erh.  The brewed tea has a woodsy kind of scent to it, reminding me of the damp wooded areas just after a rain here in the Pacific Northwest – mossy, damp, earthy … woody and even a little musty.

The flavor is also earthy, but it is lighter than I expected to to be.  There is a tingly sensation to this, like the zesty feeling that the palate experiences with something minty.  It doesn’t really taste minty as much as it feels minty.  It feels crisp and invigorating.

This crisp, lightness lasts for a couple of infusions, and by about the third and fourth infusion, I notice that the body of the tea begins to develop.   The sweet undertones to this tea start out similarly, beginning with subtle sweet notes that develop as I continue to sip.

The tasting notes on Verdant Tea’s website suggests hints of apple and cinnamon, and I taste those too, they are especially noticeable in later infusions.  I find these flavors to be the most intriguing about this tea – because in the first and second infusions, there were mere hints of a cinnamon-like note, but it was very vague … almost like it wasn’t real.  Imagine for a moment, if you would, someone burning cinnamon scented incense in a room hours ago.  The faint suggestion of cinnamon remains in the room hours later, but it is so faint, so barely-there, that you wonder if you’re just imagining it or really experiencing it.  That is how the cinnamon-y apple notes work with this tea in the first couple of infusions.  They are like mere insinuations of a cinnamon/apple flavor, but with the later infusions, these notes become more focused – more real.

This is a really fascinating Pu-erh!


Co-Founder/Co-Creator of SororiTea Sisters, Mad Tea Artist at 52Teas
Anne (aka the Mad Tea Artist) has celebrated her 29th birthday for many years now. She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her hubby and her youngest daughter. Her oldest daughter is married and has bestowed Anne with the proud title of "Gramma" and her grandson is about the cutest boy you ever did see.

Anne started her journey with tea as a casual drinker and became more serious about her tea drinking when she realized that she couldn't drink coffee. Shortly thereafter, she started becoming obsessed with the beverage and she started creating small-batch, artisan blends of tea that she sold online as LiberTEAS. After a few years, she realized she wasn't cut out to be the sole proprietor of a business so she closed LiberTEAS and started reviewing teas online. She met Jennifer through another blog that they both reviewed for and they decided to start their own review blog. This review blog!

Throughout her journey as a tea reviewer, she discovered 52Teas and became enamored with the idea of creating a new tea every week. When the founder of 52Teas decided he wanted to move on, he offered the business to Anne but knowing that she wasn't cut out to be a sole proprietor, she instead offered the company to her oldest daughter who employs her as the Mad Tea Artist for 52Teas!

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