STEAP’D With Friends Tasting Session: Sheng Pu’erh

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is dcbe59e0-c0f3-45f6-b834-352d6c06f1b9.jpg
The remains of Dream Scene Smuggler sheng I brought to the table

The third STEAP’D With Friends Tasting Session and first for 2020 has us drinking raw pu’erh! Sheng pu’erh is always an enjoyable tea for me, though I must be careful to not drink it on an empty stomach! For those new and unfamiliar, these sessions are a chance for many gong fu cha lovers to come together and meet, drink tea, and dive into conversations revolving around specific teas, preparations, and our rituals in tea.

I’ve asked a few individuals to share their thoughts on the tea they enjoyed and rate their tea’s flavor profiles so that I could compile and graph.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 2668a9c0-c488-4fa3-900a-6b215c1f8021.jpg

Michelle

Tea: 2018 Spring Menghu Sheng

Q: What did you discover about this tea throughout the session? Additionally, what recommendations would you give to someone trying this tea for the first time?

A: It has a lighter flavor profile than other Sheng teas. The liquor is light yellow with an earthy aroma. It has a silky mouthfeel with notes of berries and a woodsy aftertaste. Very balanced and mellow combination!

If you’re new to Sheng pu’erh, this is a great tea to start with! I brewed with 4-5 grams using a 100 mL vessel and boiling water for 20-30 seconds.

*Michelle is the owner of TOMO TEA, making Japanese teas available through their shop in addition to offering unique Airbnb experiences such as, Become a Japanese Green Tea Expert, through partnership with Okamoto Tea. If you’re in the L.A. area definitely consider booking an experience HERE .
IG: @tomoteala

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is d9ff305a-140d-4b70-8707-82a9060bbad8.jpg

Danae

Tea: 2005 Yong Pin Hao “Bamboo House” Raw Pu’erh Tea Cake of Yi Wu Mountain

Q: What did you discover about this tea throughout the session? Additionally, what recommendations would you give to someone trying this tea for the first time?

A: My expectations for what I thought a middle-aged sheng would taste like were quite challenged. Since I started this as a blind tasting, I was surprised at how floral and fruity it was. I was almost sure it was only 2-3 years old but was surprised it was 15 years old!

I’d say that no matter how much you think you know a particular type of tea, it’s good to do blind tastings once in awhile because it prevents us from imposing our own ideas about it; furthering our learning!

*Danae explores her experience of tea through reflections, reviews, and experimental sessions on her blog camelliastreaty.com
IG: @camellias_treaty

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is ff1cb249-8fe0-478c-b05e-4efd343f5b24.jpg

Shiloh

Tea: 2015 Wild Purple Sheng

Q: What did you discover about this tea throughout the session? Additionally, what recommendations would you give to someone trying this tea for the first time?

A: There is a steady and balanced release of fruit and floral notes that persist long after each sip. Mineral earthiness is apparent at the front, but that fades to nuttiness, and then sweetness. These notes remain balanced throughout the session

I recommend infusing for up to 40 seconds in porcelain to draw out astringent depth, and balance. Add 10 seconds for each successive infusion to experience noticeable development of character with this delicious tea. This tea persists for several infusions.

*Shiloh is a ceramic artist, tea/tea-ware enthusiast, and mixed-media installation artist. You can find his works and statements at https://shilohgastello.wixsite.com/ceramics
IG: nuev_orden

As you can see from this small sample of reflections, there is a wide range of possibilities and experiences within the world of sheng pu’erh! I hope you enjoyed the format and that it provided an insight into your own tasting experience. Stay tuned for next month, as we taste Gyokuro!

Steep well!

Marco

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is steapd_leaf_horizontal_filled_green.jpg

2 Comments

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s