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!
I find myself can only love the taste and the feel of old Sheng Pu Erh, so when this one arrived I was very interested to try it asap - however, I was very busy and the internet situation was not compliant at all!
So, right at this moment, I am writing it as well as tasting it!
The tea is better slow boiled (or steep it if you can maintain constant heat in the brewing vessel) and requires a bit of reviving as it has been aged for over 30 years.
The color of the liquor is deep maroon, very nice and clear color with the sweet woody aroma coming out of the tea.
The taste and the aroma is mellow and mature, wood, roots, spice, and age dried fruit.
Some may argue that the taste of this tea reminds them of dried cranberries, but I think it is much closer to Angco / Hong Zao or Chinese Red Dates.
The woody aroma is closer to teak wood, cooling camphor in the throat but the nuance in the body is warm and comforting.
Notes of roots similar to licorice (or perhaps red sage roots) last for some time in the throat.