This starts out very mellow for such a young sheng. Despite the strong aroma of black pepper as soon as hot water was poured over it, the first several infusions were very smooth; later infusions were darker orange in color, like I’d expect from a sheng with more age, but tasted more like a typical young sheng. It’s slightly astringent right after swallowing, but the hui gan makes up for that by slowly refilling my mouth with sweetness and somehow making me feel more hydrated a couple minutes after finishing the cup than I did immediately after. This effect fades later in the session. The mouthfeel is soft and smooth, but not in a creamy way, more like a Keemun than a high mountain oolong. This changes to a thinner, sharper texture later on with more tannins. I lost track of how many infusions I got out of it, but it was probably at least a dozen.
This isn’t the most complex sheng I’ve had, but that also means it’s more consistent. After a few sessions I feel like I know what to expect from it. The flavors are mostly on the grassy, vegetal, and herbal side, with savory, earthy mushrooms, a plum-like sweetness, and a bit of a peppery bite keeping it from tasting too much like green tea.
Late in the session, a calm, euphoric energy hit me suddenly. I don’t know what causes the “tea drunk” sensation, but there’s definitely something to this tea that feels very different from a caffeine overdose (trust me, I know that feeling too well and dislike it immensely).
I don’t know enough about puerh to be able to say how this will age, but at the current price, this is a great deal and I’ll probably buy a cake.
Flavors: Grass, Green Bell Peppers, Mushrooms, Pepper, Plums, Vegetal