87

This is strange but my review of the original sample I tried (further below) is glowing, but the subsequent 100-gram cake I got doesn’t leave me with the same observations. I thus think my original review may have been colored by a good mood or something. This is a fine daily drinker, but repeated sessions with the cake just don’t reveal the complexity that I may have imagined in the sample.

Original review of sample:
This is a shu puer I want to have on hand. Smoky, earthy, mineral, and then a fruity apricot character reveals itself in the middle of all that and lingers as an enjoyable aftertaste. This tea demands going beyond simple descriptors such as “creamy.” This shu has complexity, depth, and character. It does thin out fairly quickly, but rather than collapse, it moves away from the initial smoky earthiness into a lighter realm of wet wood, some mustiness, still some hints of apricot and even floral notes, all that keeps you steeping. This is a shu that I would want to share with someone new to puer and just watch the revelation in their eyes. I got this as a sample and hope to get a cake.

Flavors: Apricot, Earth, Floral, Mineral, Musty, Smoke, Wet Wood

Garret

We love the Temple Stairs here, too. Thank you for writing up your experience with it. The mini-tuocha version of this same leaf turned out well too. It is something to notice that even though they are pressed from the identical blend, they are slightly different right now because of the pressing size and what that does to the aging at this early stage. Thank you!

Grateful,
Garret

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Garret

We love the Temple Stairs here, too. Thank you for writing up your experience with it. The mini-tuocha version of this same leaf turned out well too. It is something to notice that even though they are pressed from the identical blend, they are slightly different right now because of the pressing size and what that does to the aging at this early stage. Thank you!

Grateful,
Garret

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Ratings:

I am new to tasting, so I am adjusting my ratings of each tea to accommodate my new experiences and learning.

But overall this is my logic:

95+ are teas I want to have on hand and buy again. I am willing to save my money for them (within reason) and measure out every last 10th of a gram.

90-94 are teas that I highly praise and recommend, but they are not ones that I prioritize to buy again and have on hand.

80-89 are teas that I am thankful for trying, but I would rather save my money if necessary to buy a 95+ tea.

If I do not rate a tea, it means I feel bad about giving a score of 79 or less and would prefer the community and experts weigh in with their math.

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