Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Life In Teacup, 2010 Da Dian Mang Fei Ancient Tree Sheng
Harvested in spring, compressed in autumn using traditional methods.
Sample provided by Life In Teacup
It's been awhile since I have reviewed a sheng puerh. I'll be honest. I have no idea what makes for a good sheng. What I can tell you is what I like and what I don't.
I opened the sample pouch and inhaled. The scent was fresh and while not exactly green tea like, it was a very fresh aroma. The sample piece is large and has some green coloration. It pried apart pretty easily without a pick. The picture is what was left of the sample while preparing the first cup.
I used about 4g - approx 1/3 of the sample in my press with boiling water. I was tempted to gong fu brew it with my gaiwan but opted for the lazy less intensive method. I did not do a rinse. Instead I let the leaf rest and absorb the warm moisture in the freshly washed press.
The steep was 1 1/2 minutes. Long for a gaiwan but short by most western standards. The result is golden sunshine in a cup. The leaf is a mixture of green and brown with a marine scent.
The sip is bright and kind of metallic. I say that, but compared to many sheng I have tried this one is nicely civilized. You may not easily make this connection but the taste reminded me of frosted mini wheat cereal. I often eat them dry as a snack.
This has a thick syrupy feel, leaving my lips sticky. There is a nice amount of depth as the flavors morph gently as it is swallowed. The aftertaste is nicely green in flavor. One noteworthy thing is the tingly affect this is having on my cheeks. Puerhs that I tend to like generate a rumbling feeling in my stomach. This is one of those teas.
As the cup cooled I began to pick up on a light amount of leather - I love horse tack leather in the flavor. I found nothing in this that I considered out of place or offensive. This is an enjoyable cup from start to finish.
Obviously this will steep several times. Today I enjoyed two 12oz mugs. The second was as flavorful as the first.
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