From the get go this is a genuinely aged sheng- the aroma, taste and mouthfeel are all decidedly OLD.
Rich and complex, thick, sweet, good qi and endless steeps.
It is priced appropriately though, so if you can afford it it is highly recommended.
A truly aged ancient trees puer!
Valeri from @tea_side gave me a pack of his 1988 HTC Sheng PuErh last year.
I halved the puerh, I drank one straightaway and I let other one rest and aired to try later.
So yesterday I drank the aired half of the PuErh.
After airing out, the tea has reacted with the weather in my tea room.
It develops deeper notes, it turned darker than it was, and the true taste of the tea has been clarified.
Lots of earthy flavors to be found with ripe hawthorn fruit aroma and reminiscence of aromatic resin.
The first that came to me was dried licorice and rhubarb, then came along the ginseng like flavor, dandelion roots, and some other sorts of dark Ayurvedic herbal concoction.
The camphoric and resin like aroma lingers for a while, cooling sensation also can be felt in the throat.
The tea last for a long time too, the Qi was medium: it warms up the body as necessary as it can be.
I am saving the 1988 sheng for a special occasion, since it is the oldest puer I've ever had. I was pleasantly surprised that two other 15 gram sheng puer samples were unexpectedly included, a 2006 and 2014. I did try the 2006 and found it exceptionally good. Apparently China is not the only country that can produce good sherng puer. I had no idea until I read a blog about Tea Side.
A lovely aged tea, smooth and very tasty.
A relaxing experience.
Very clean, good storage.
Bouquet: Those dry leaves already promise a highly enjoyable upcoming session with nuances of old worn out leather bags transported by yaks and horses - and guess what's inside - Pu-erh of course. Steaming and conquering the whole room old leather might still be on the plate but even more a rich mineral stony atmosphere with a mystical vision of an old abandoned theater where hints of theater make-up is still within the dusty air. But it also gets spicy and sweet fruity with pickled cherries covered with dark chocolate followed by hints of warm plum wine, cardamon and earthy notes layered with Autumn foliage and broken pieces of old wine barrels scattered around the ground.
Liquor: Here everything starts as sinister as dark chocolate again with hints of cherry plus a very oily thick creamy but also quite bitter texture - like very dark chocolate. Between old straw, earthy wet soil, Autumn foliage and old leather plus some hints of animal fur you are also going to discover layers of walnuts and again strong mineral stony parts too. This buddy is very calming and relaxing which warms the soul but also gives you a certain relieve on hot humid days. There is also a certain aspect of precious cherry and sandalwood to it. Later within its steaming mist & taste you might also find lovely nuances of beetroot. This buddy is as amazing as anything else I tried from this northern Thailand sample package - deeply loved this experience and I can't wait to review the rest of them. Cheers everybody & may amazing tea be with you!