Aged & Rested

Nan Jian Jin Hao 801 Shou (fermented) Pu-erh Tuo Cha

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Shou (fermented) Pu-erh

 

Nan Jian Tulin Jin Hao 801 Shou Pu-erh Tuo Cha

 

Appearance: dark brown, finely cut leaf mixed with coppery tips
Flavor:
sweet and smooth and light with suggestions of mushrooms, forest floor and dried fruits
Aroma: fresh and woodsy and clean
Liquor: dark brown/burgundy colored liquor

 

Wuliang Shan
Jingdong County, Pu-erh (Simao) Prefecture,
Yunnan Province, China

2009 Spring Pluck pressed in 2010
(6-years aged)

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 20 to 32 ounces:

 

Carefully scrape the tea cake to loosen the leaves.
Use 2 teaspoons (3 grams) of tea per 6oz 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:

 

Use 4 teaspoons (6 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 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 mao cha for Pu-erh producers to work with.

 

As many of you know, we are smitten with both the Pu-erh and dian hong cha from the Wuliang Shan tea harvesting area in Yunnan. (In fact, we try to have as many variations of tea from this harvesting area as we can find, such as our Yunnan Jingdong Wuliang Golden Threads in 2 seasonal pluckings. See the listing in Black Tea.)

This Nan Jian Tulin Jin Hao 801 tuo cha is made with leaf materials gathered from tea harvesting areas on Wuliang Shan at approximately 6,500 feet in elevation.

The Jin Hao line of tuo cha from Tulin is made from high grade leaf materials. The aroma of the dried tuo cha is fresh and woodsy and clean and appealing. The overall taste is sweet and smooth and light. Suggestions of mushrooms, forest floor and dried fruits add to the appeal of this tasty tuo cha.

Despite the fact that this is only a 6-year old cake, the high processing standards of the Tulin tea factory produces fine Pu-erh. Fans of Xiaguan Tea Factory Pu-erh may want to give this tea a try – Tulin’s teas are well-known for their balanced, complex flavor which id due to their selection of raw materials, and their blending and processing skills.

Tuo cha’s are tennis-ball sized units of compressed Pu-erh leaf with thumb-sized, hollow core. Pu-erh is pressed into many different shapes and tuo cha’s are one of the most popular for their small size.

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.

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