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Boyou JYMT Shou (fermented) Pu-erh Brick

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Shou (fermented) Pu-erh

 

Boyou JYMY Shou Pu-erh Tea Brick

 

Flavor: creamy, rich and full taste
Aroma: strong, clean, enticing, suggestions of wood, forest floor,
and mushroom with some sweetness. The tea does not suffer from the all-to-common shou Pu-erh heavy-handed pungent wo dui funky-ness that plague many shou Pu-erh produced today
Liquor: dark brown/burgundy with copper colored highlights

 

Menghai County, Xishuangbanna Prefecture,
Yunnan Province, China

2009 Spring Pluck
The brick was pressed in 2010 and released for sale in 2011

Note on Steeping Pu-erh:

 

Pu-erh is traditionally ‘rinsed’ before being steeped. This is done with a quick application of hot water that is poured over the tea in the gaiwan or teapot and then immediately discarded. The rinse water is not drunk – its purpose is to help the leaves begin to open during steeping. Use additional appropriately-heated water for the 1st steeping and subsequent re-steepings.

 

Western-style steeping in a medium-large sized teapot 25-32 ounces:

 

Carefully scrape the tea cake to loosen the leaves
Use 2 teaspoons (3 grams) of tea per 6 oz water
Use water that is 200°F – 210°F
Rinse the tea in your teapot with a quick application of hot water
Immediately discard this liquid
Add additional hot water to start the 1st steeping
Steep for 3-4 minutes
Re-steep this leaf 1-2 additional times

 

Asian-style steeping in a small teapot under 10 oz or in a gaiwan:

 

Carefully scrape the tea cake to loosen the leaves
Use 1 Tablespoon to 1.5 Tablespoons (6 grams) of tea per 6 oz water
Scale up for a 10 oz tea steeping vessel
Use water that is 200°F-210°F
Rinse the tea in your teapot with a quick application of hot water
Immediately discard this liquid
Add additional hot water to start the 1st steeping
Steep for 25 seconds
Increase the steeping time an additional 5 to 10 seconds with each re-steep
Re-steep this leaf 4-6 times (or more!)

Unlike most other tea, Pu-erh is made from mao cha and not directly from fresh leaf.

 

So what is mao cha? Mao cha is a simple ‘rough’ manufacture of leaf materials that consists of:

 

plucking
withering (indoors and or outdoors)
firing
rolling & shaping
sun-drying

 

Mao cha is considered both finished tea and half-made tea. It is essentially young sheng Pu-erh and is drunk by villagers in Yunnan as well as being the leaf that all forms of Pu-erh are made from. Mao cha is simple to manufacture but is complex in its diversity.

 

Mao cha can be made from the fresh leaf of one tea garden or be a blend of leaf from an entire tea village or from several tea producing villages within one county.  Mao cha can be stored and aged after it is made, or it can be a new blend that is comprised of aged mao cha from different years. It is found in a variety of leaf sizes, too, depending on the location of the tea trees and on the type of local cultivars (size of the leaf)  the mao cha was made from. Mao cha is a great example of the effects of terroir.

 

As you can see, the possibilities and resulting flavors of mao cha are almost endless. All of these variables result in a staggering choice of available mao cha for Pu-erh producers to work with.

The Boyou Tea Factory is relatively new to the Pu-erh scene – it was begun in 2005 in the Menghai area. But even though they are one of the new kids on the block, they are known for making excellent shou Pu-erh, in part due to the fact that the fermentation workshop director from the Menghai Tea Factory (Master Huang An Shun) now works for Boyou in that capacity and has brought all of his knowledge and expertise with him. Many Pu-erh aficionados believe that Boyou’s shou Pu-erh are on a par quality-wise with those made in the Menghai Tea Factory (Dayi), which is an accomplishment indeed. Boyou features beeng cha made exclusively from Menghai area leaf materials.

Boyou likes to hold their shou Pu-erh for a year or so before releasing it for sale. They do this to allow the wo dui aroma and taste to dissipate from the beeng cha and for the flavors of the tea to develop within the cake.

This tea is excellent to drink now or it will keep for many more years to come. The tea is made from 3rd, 4th & 5th grade leaf, and those familiar with leaf plucking standards will know that, unlike the early and tiny single leaves and buds that are so desirable for making premium green teas, Pu-erh obtains some of its distinctions of flavor from 3rd & 4th leaf which stays on the trees longer and develop more strength and vigor in the taste.

Why does this tea have rectangular shape? Round been cha tea cakes are the most common shapes of compressed Pu-erh, but many other shapes are made, such as rectangles, squares, tuo cha and melon shapes. Sometimes these shapes are made for a particular client, or to highlight a certain recipe of tea. Shape is not an indicator of quality nor should shapes other than round beeng cha be discounted as being less desirable.

The JYMT letters on the label of this tea is for Jin Yu Man Tang, a phrase used on some Chinese good luck charms that roughly translates to mean “may gold and jade fill your house.”  Perhaps that is a commentary by Boyou on the quality of this Pu-erh!

Note:
Shou Pu-erh is also known as ‘cooked’ or ‘ripe’ Pu-erh, a reference to the wo dui fermentation process that the leaf undergoes in the tea factory

Want to know more?

New Tea, Rested Tea & Aged Tea