Refreshing, smokey and cool aroma that is both sweet and slightly brisk in flavor. Notes of turned earth and crisp apple are complimented by a mineral edge.
This Green Leaf Puer comes from the Jing Mai Mountains in Southern Yunnan. Long, stylish, twisted leaf from the ‘Da Ye’ (broad leaf) tea varietal. The leaves are not allowed to oxidize very long and thus maintain a deep green hue with some silver tips.
The history of puer tea originates from the small town of Puer in Yunnan. Teas shipped along the Silk Roads to Tibet, India, and beyond gained a characteristic earthy, musky aroma and a smooth, sweet, slightly smoky taste due to the humid environment and long journey. A special tea processing technique emerged to allow the leaves to continue to ferment over time, so that the mature taste would develop at the end of the long caravan journey. Tea scholars have also contributed that there is an inherent special characteristic in the tea plant varietal Da Ye (‘Big Leaf’ varietal of Camellia Assamica). This varietal is abundant across the entire Yunnan Province, parts of Burma, Assam in India, and Northern Thailand. While classic puers are made from old growth tea plants (several hundred years old, and wild-grown), cooked-style puers are mostly made from newly propagated plants that are cultivated every season. The leaf processing imitates the effects of the long journeys and humid environments.
After picking appropriate tender leaves, the first step in making raw pu'er is converting the leaf to maocha ("light green rough tea" ). The leaves are then dry pan-fried using a large wok in a process, which stops enzyme activity in the leaf and prevents further oxidation. The leaves can then be rolled, rubbed, and shaped through several steps into strands. The shaped leaves are then ideally dried in the sun and then manually picked through to remove bad leaves. Once dry, maocha can be sent directly to the factory to be pressed into raw pu'er, or like this one aged uncompressed and sold at its maturity as aged loose-leaf raw pu'er.
Bring filtered or spring water to 190°F. Add 1 tsp of tea leaves to an 8oz cup. Pour boiling water over the tea leaves and let steep 1-2 minutes.
Infuse a tablespoon or more of leaves in a small pot for well under a minute. Then re-infuse the same leaves and serve multiple times while adding a bit more time with each round. Individual infusions will yield a different liquor and experience from the proceeding cup.
Jing Mai Mountains, Southern Yunnan, China