Blending Old and Young Raw PuErh

Tasting our ultra-special blend of Raw Gushu PuErh

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Whenever we drink tea, ideas flow like a stream and we are always scribbling plans and thoughts on post-it notes to discover the following morning.

In one of these late-night sessions, Celine and I were talking about how much we loved the raw youth of young PuErh and at the same time we are mesmerised by smooth, sweet, aged PuErh. Why not try to make a tea which incorporates the best of both worlds? Why not blend an aged with a young tea.

So we set about trying to create a blend which was not a simple task at all!. First we had to find an aged Gushu PuErh that was loose (not in cake). We wanted the age of the tea to be at least 10 years so that the age gap between young and old would be really pronounced in the cup. Incredibly, we stumbled upon 30kg of a 2002 Gushu from Bulang. One taste and we knew that we had found one of the stars of our show - next up we had to find the co-star.

Blending is part skill, part intuition and A LOT of tasting. We went through lots of young PuErh but felt that the Bulang taste dominated the blend until we found an Autumn picked Gushu from Nannuo. This part of China is really diverse and produces characterful tea. The Autumn harvest seemed to marry with the warmer aromas of the aged Bulang and we fell in love with the taste.

We knew that this was a risk though. Blending an expensive aged Gushu PuErh (a very hard to find tea) is not something that is usually done and our producer certainly raised their eyebrows at the idea of combining with a young tea, but we decided to go for it and trust our tastebuds.

The results are, in my opinion, spectacular. Swinging from warm, honeyed and plummy taste to a zesty and herbaceous aroma - this tea captures the best of young and old PuErh and creates an experience which is greater than the sum of its parts. I highly recommend picking up this small-batch experimental tea and taste as the two teas dance through the years, forever, changing, forever in flux, forever 15 years apart on their journey but travelling together.

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