Patiently I am waiting, any day now the update for Minecraft will be released and boy is it a doozy! Currently I am wandering around my creative world, Ramble, making sure my transition to the update will be smooth. Building an aquarium for Guardians, getting the gardens ready for new flowers, creating a spot for a new ice castle…lots to do!
It is time for some Sheng! Today I am looking at Tanlong Premium Tea Collection’s 2011 Mengku Snow Mountain Hundreds Year Old Tea Tree Puerh, this Sheng comes from old trees high up in the mountains, and wow, are these leaves BIG. Big and silvery, covered with delicate trichomes, I admit I admired them for quite a while before I got around to drinking them. The aroma of these leaves is pungent! Strong notes of wet cedar, camphor, wet hay, and sweet raisins mix with a distinct aroma of white wine and cooked lettuce. Definitely an intense smelling tea, one that I indulged in sniffing for the entire time my kettle was heating up.
I decided to brew this one in my gaiwan, sometimes I give my Sheng pot a break, usually that is when I want to admire the leaves, and this was one of those times. The aroma of the now soggy leaves is a pungent blend of wine and fresh grapes, wet hay, wet grass, spinach, and an extremely delicate distant floral note that is almost impossible to pin down. The liquid is surprisingly sweet, with aroma notes of apples, honey, sweet freshly broken hay, grapes, and a hint of sweeter raisins. The aroma borders on creamy with its sweetness, making this possibly the sweetest Sheng I have sniffed.
The first steep is delicious! Very mellow and sweet with strong notes of raisins and broken hay, the raisin notes freshen up towards the end with notes of grapes and a finish of slightly crisp lettuce. I notice right away how this tea has a very relaxing and cooling qi, I will not be surprised if this tea gets me super tea drunk.
For this steep, the first thing I noticed about the aroma is the slightly surprising note of fresh dill, not what I was expecting! There are also notes of honey and grapes with a touch of hay and sage. The herbaceous turn of the aroma carried over to the taste, blending intensely sweet honey and grapes with a finish of sage and lingering dill. The taste reminds me of summer and gardening, and the cooling qi is refreshing.
That dill note is still here, which is really fun, I love dill and might say it is my favorite herb. There are notes of hay and oxalis with a touch of sage, not really sweet anymore focusing instead on herbaceous. Whoa, this tea did an about face, instead of being intensely sweet it starts out with an herbaceous bitterness that reminds me of fenugreek and spinach. After this bitterness there is a burst of sweetness like grapes and an intense salivary response, the finish is a floral blend of dill and asters with a lingering cedar coolness.
I went several more steeps with this tea, it stays herbaceous for quite a while, finishing off with mineral notes and a lingering sweetness. My prediction was correct, the qi was mellow but strong, I found myself wanting to melt into my chair while contemplating the wafts of steam coming from my cup.