I have a boatload of new teas (styles, companies ect) that I am trying out and can’t wait to share with you some exciting finds on a weekly series I have cleverly named New Tea Tuesday, which starts today!
For today, after waking up from a night of celebrating National Margarita Day, I wanted to dive right into this project with my most unusual of the new teas I have acquired. This gem comes from the Mark T Wendell Tea Company and unusual but surprisingly pleasant is the best way I can think of to sum up the flavor. This is my first time exploring the Pu-erh style and so as it was new to me I thought some background from the Wendell Company might be a good starting point:
A relatively new offering in the mainstream U.S. tea marketplace, Pu-erh is made from fermented Yunnan Black tea. After picking, Pu-erh is created by piling the tea for lengthy periods, allowing a true internal fermentation of the leaf to occur. This process gives Pu-erh its unique earthy overtones. This type of tea is cultivated in the world’s best tea growth areas, from tea bushes as tall as trees. Pu-erh has long been valued for its medicinal benefits, believed to aid in digestion and the reduction of cholesterol. Primarily packaged in compressed shapes of varying sizes, Pu-erh teas are also available in loose leaf form.
Now the presentation is something that I found to be.. adorable. The tea I bought was Pu-erh Tuo Cha and instead of being sold in a tin of loose leaf, the tea comes in lovely little pressed nests. One nest is all that is required for a cup and can be re-steeped as desired.
My go to style is a bold black tea, probably Earl Grey or something similar, with no additives such as sugar or milk. Following my normal drinking pattern I kept this black.
I have to say I found the flavor to be a bit light and grassy. I was surprised to find myself sipping on this thinking of April rain in a spring garden. As I enjoyed this tea I found myself thinking that I just caught myself daydreaming at work for the first time in forever and found it to be extremely pleasant. Usually I drink tea and just plow through my work day but this tea made me want to slow down and just enjoy it. I am curious if other Pu-erh drinkers find this to be the norm with this style or if I just am over thinking this.
Currently listening to: Better Be Quiet Now by Elliott Smith