A rich and wild tasting aged Sheng Gushu PuErh picked from the high elevation forests of Hua Zhu Liang Zi. Very small batch (260 cakes total).
A very special tea for us, which has been sitting in our London storage for nearly 2 years before release. It has become one of my favourite 'treat' tipples with an adult yet easy-drinking taste and the most incredible minty cooling and sweet finish. This tea will go on for seemingly endless infusions and has a flushed, cheeky and happy energy - glowing yet cooling (like being on holiday in a hot country).
Hua Zhu Liang Zi is the highest elevation peak of the famed Xishuangbanna area of Yunnan. The ancient arbor forests are up in the clouds and produce tea which is potent yet easy-drinking, rich yet refreshing, wild yet comforting.
When we tasted this tea it was less than 8 years old and, whilst being delicious, we felt that it was in an awkward 'adolescent' phase in its development as it moved from a fresh taste to an aged one. All of the teasing aged notes were starting to emerge but they were young and flighty. So we bought up the small batch of leaves, pressed them into cakes (thus adding a hit of moisture to boost ageing) and then kept them in our London storage for nearly 2 years at a RH of between 55-68% with a temperature between 20-25 Celsius (68-78F).
I tasted the tea every few months to monitor its changes and I have been amazed at how wonderful these London conditions have shifted the tea. It has brought richness, potency and the most wonderful Hui Gan (returning sweetness).
The tea has a fabulous balance - deep with honey, dried fruits and baked oranges, light with magnolia and soapy brightness, spicy with cinnamon and eucalyptus and sultry with deep jungle and wet rock aromatics.
The Hui Gan is minty fresh and honey sweet with a deep cooling sensation from the middle of your tongue to the bottom of your lungs.
The body sensation on the Straight-Faced Playmate is heating and cooling. You experience a glow of warmth throughout your body which leads to cooling perspiration. It is happy, cheeky and slightly excitable and provides a long sustained lifting of energy. Be careful not to drink too late unless you are planning to stay up!
This tea will continue to age and develop and I HIGHLY RECOMMEND getting an extra cake or tong for ageing - it will become a very prized tea in your collection.