Menghai Wangshuji Shou Pu-erh Third Grade 2008

Tea type
Pu-erh Tea
Ingredients
Pu Erh Tea
Flavors
Barnyard, Earth, Leather, Wood, Butter, Cherry, Cocoa, Fig, Umami, Dirt, Sweet
Sold in
Loose Leaf
Caffeine
Low
Certification
Fair Trade, Organic, Vegan
Edit tea info Last updated by WYMMTEA|惟餘莽莽
Average preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 4 g 3 oz / 100 ml

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8 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Got this as a sample with a recent Wymm order. In the mood for shu today so I chose this one because… well, it was there and it was loose and my pu pick looked surly and dangerous today. I love the...” Read full tasting note
  • “So, I am shamefully overdue on these tasting notes, and a few others for tea I received for review. It isn’t that they are bad, or that I am not grateful, but I’ve sadly had to cut back on real...” Read full tasting note
    75
  • “Ello Kiddies, today I finally feel up to some pu time. I love the packaging on these samples. Clever and interesting. It kind of involved all my senses right from the start. This is a loose leaf...” Read full tasting note
  • “I’m brewing in a thick-walled gaiwan. After a rinse of these leaves, they have such a beautiful dark appearance, nearly black, sleek and shiny. The scent gives off notes of cocoa, sweet dough, and...” Read full tasting note
    92

From WymmTea

This shu pu-erh brews with a rich and honey flavor and long-lasting jasmine rice aroma. Small buds from high mountains in Menghai County, located in west of Xishuangbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture in Yunnan Province, are picked to make the tea in 2008. Pu-erh tea has the potential to ferment over time, and this tea has been post-fermented for 6 years since production. Post-fermentation gives the tea vibrant flavours and richer aroma as well as deep wine colour.

Note: First grade contains the smallest leaves while seventh grade contains the largest leaves. There is marginal difference in the taste; first grade has a slightly stronger and woodier flavour, while the seventh grade has a milder and sweeter flavour. The third and fifth grades fall in between of the first and seventh grade.

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8 Tasting Notes

107 tasting notes

Got this as a sample with a recent Wymm order. In the mood for shu today so I chose this one because… well, it was there and it was loose and my pu pick looked surly and dangerous today. I love the dry leaf aroma: leather, earth, and mushrooms. When the leaf is wet the mushroom scent almost disappears, leaving just a deep rich, earthy, wet forest after-the-rain aroma. The color of the brew is really a lovely dark reddish orange, not unlike cola. Some mild sourness in early steeps eventually gives way to a smooth brew that coats the tongue and throat, and is robust and just a little bit sweet. I don’t know if it’s sweet like cherries because of the taste or if the appearance just gives the suggestion, but that’s what I’m getting from it. It’s also quite warming in the belly. And it goes on and on and on.

I don’t have a lot more to say about this shu. It’s pleasant enough and I’m glad to have tried it. The “third grade” in the name does make me wonder about the difference between all the grades though. I’ve never purchased the same shu in different grades and taste-tested them side by side. I think I’ll add that to 2016’s To Do list.

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75
709 tasting notes

So, I am shamefully overdue on these tasting notes, and a few others for tea I received for review. It isn’t that they are bad, or that I am not grateful, but I’ve sadly had to cut back on real tea, largely due to some unreasonably bad heartburn, that is made worse by tea. How could the Gods be so cruel? So anyway, reviews will be few and far between but I am here drinking things on occasion.

The beau and I had this one throughout the day while doing other things. I did brew it gong fu style but rather than dedicating ourselves only to the tea, we also played Magic (one game each!) and BBQed. The first BBQ of the season! I also got to wear my Birkenstocks today, and hung out with some baby goats down the road. It was only a one day weekend for me, but it was a good one.

And part of that, was thanks to this tea. I’m going to say up front that it wasn’t crazy complex, and it didn’t demand a lot of thought or attention – in fact, I had a hard time coming up with descriptors. But that’s okay. Instead, this was an easy drinking tea that demanded nothing from me. I think it would stand up well to Western style brewing, and I intend to use the other half of my sample for that.

In the gaiwan, we did 4 steeps with 95 degree water (only because I get tired of hot porcelain on my fingers with boiling water). 10 second rinse, then 15, 20, 25, and 30 seconds steeps. I found the first two to be sort of barn-like, but in a positive way. Then 3 and 4 morphed on me and were very earthy. There was some initial sweetness in 1 that disappeared by 2. There was never any bitterness, and it was very easy drinking. Easy gulping, even. The beau, on the other hand, found the first 2 steeps to be earthy, and found it a little more barn-like (leather, wood, damp) in 3. Same tea, steeped the exact same way, and opposite tastes. We both found it smooth and easy drinking though, which is excellent.

I don’t know if I would purchase it, as I am no longer in the market for easy drinking shou, but this is the sort of tea I think would introduce people to shou quite nicely. There’s nothing offensive in it, but there are some of the hallmarks of shou pu. Nice tea, great day. Thanks, Wymm! :)

Flavors: Barnyard, Earth, Leather, Wood

Lindsay

I love the descriptor “barn-like, but in a positive way”. :)

Uniquity

It’s my old stand-by for shou pu. I love the smell of a barn! Very different from manure, thankfully. :)

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1719 tasting notes

Ello Kiddies, today I finally feel up to some pu time. I love the packaging on these samples. Clever and interesting. It kind of involved all my senses right from the start.

This is a loose leaf shou. The leaf is chocolate brown, large and lightly twisted. It has a boot leather aroma to me.

I tried doing 3 rinses as Wymm recommends on the website, but after drinking the first and the second, I gave up on the idea. The third was my first full cup. Copying straight from my blog: The taste is much like the rinses. Instead of boot leather like the dry scent, this is old family Bible leather. There is a gentle sweetness to it. I find it immediately warming and comforting. There is no bitterness and nothing off about it. This is nicely smooth with no rough edges. There is a woodsy cedar spiciness late in the sip that adds just enough bite to be interesting without adding distraction.

I’ll continue steeping this throughout the day. It has been a while since I have had pu-erh and my tummy is rumbling in appreciation.

ashmanra

I love the packaging, too! At first I thought the “tag” was terracotta but then when I got mine I saw it was some sort of leather or leather-like substance! I have it “artfully” arranged on a pewter tray on my secretary desk because I thought it was so pretty to display.

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92
306 tasting notes

I’m brewing in a thick-walled gaiwan. After a rinse of these leaves, they have such a beautiful dark appearance, nearly black, sleek and shiny. The scent gives off notes of cocoa, sweet dough, and forest floor. A lot more of the sweet dough scent comes through in the smell of the brewed liquor.

I only rinsed this Puer once. Many people rinse Puer twice before drinking, especially Shu Puer. I tend to actually drink the rinse of a Sheng Puer if it is good enough, and drink the first infusion of a Shu Puer if it is good enough, rather than rinsing twice.

The flavor is much more sweet than I expected. It’s very rich. Mild, but full flavored. The sweetness of this one is a fruity kind of sweetness and really lingers in your mouth. I’m reminded of dark bing cherries.

The second infusion smells more rich and sweet. Darker flavors are coming through in the taste, very rich, very clean. I’m reminded of dark tasting fruit again, maybe fig. The first infusion had a hint of the “leathery” kind of taste that I’m used to in Shu Puer, but this infusion does not, so if you want to avoid that taste, two rinses would be ideal. While I feel the first infusion tasted good, this one would be a gentler starting point, especially if serving to guests. The taste that lingers in my mouth is like light brown sugar.

On the third infusion, I taste some umami (savoryness) coming into the flavor. There are still notes of dark fruit, this time reminding me more of plum, but they are subtler now. The feel of this tea in the mouth is still incredibly smooth, clean, and rich. It really coats the mouth and leaves a lasting flavor.

The fourth infusion is still rich and smooth, with similar flavors.

Fifth infusion is a little less sweet and has a lingering buttery taste. There are subtle notes of metal.

The sixth infusion is mellow and sweet again, a pretty straightforward Shu Puer flavor on the sweet side. It has the usual Shu notes of mild earth, wood, leather, old books, but they are equaled by the mellowness and sweetness.

Seventh infusion, back to more earthy, musty flavors, not particularly ones I enjoy, but neither are they offensive.

I pushed the eighth infusion much longer and it is back to having a sweet taste, this time like cane sugar with just a hint of cherry.

As ratings go, it’s always a bit tricky for me to form an opinion that merges my perception of the tea’s quality with my level of personal enjoyment for it. The ratings I give are really just personal notes so I can look back and remember quickly what I thought of all the teas I’ve tried without having to read the reviews again and again. This Puer did have some rich, sweet qualities in the earlier infusions that were superior to most of the Shu Cha I’ve tried, but I felt that later infusions weren’t holding onto the best flavors of it as well. Still, it was very clean and a really wonderful drinking experience, enough that I regard it highly among my experience with Shu Puer.

Flavors: Butter, Cherry, Cocoa, Fig, Umami

Preparation
Boiling 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
WYMMTEA|惟餘莽莽

Thanks for the review Lion! can we ask what was steeping method? did you maintain 15 seconds steeps throughout?

Lion

Actually the infusion times were probably something like this, in seconds:
8, 10, 12, 15, 20, 25, 30, 45, 1min, 1min30, 2min, 3min, 5min, etc.

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4843 tasting notes

Backlog:

I received my lovely box from Wymm Tea the other day and of the four Pu-erh samples they sent me this is the first that I’ve tried. I loved this tea. It didn’t have a strong earthy presence, and the earthiness that I experienced was more like mushroom than the earthiness that I often experience with a pu-erh. Nothing offputting about this tea at all. It was lovely.

You can read about my adventures with this tea and its many infusions here: http://sororiteasisters.com/2015/03/10/menghai-shou-pu-erh-third-grade-2008-from-wymm-tea/

WYMMTEA|惟餘莽莽

Thank you very much for the in-depth review on your blog LiberTeas:)

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90
921 tasting notes

Today is just an awful, awful day. Spock has left us (oh god the tears!!) the dress apocalypse is nigh, my computer is garbage, and I think I have to break my promise to never run ads on my blog. Truly this is a dark day, I am honestly not even sure what to do with myself, the other stuff really was making me blue, but Leonard Nimoy dying is heartbreaking, I love Star Trek, heck I am even debating wearing a Science Officer’s outfit as a wedding dress when I get around to getting married. Spock might have been the first ‘Space Elf’ that I ever fell for, he is just iconic, and his death is tragic, but, at least he did live long and prospered.

So, enough crying into my cat, it is Dark Tea week still, so it is time to venture further into the fermented heart of tea with Wymm Tea’s Menghai Shou (Cooked) Pu-erh In Third Grade 2008. This tea comes from the mountains of Menghai and sits right in the middle of tea grading (seventh grade has the biggest leaves and first is the smallest) this means it is right in the middle of sweetness and woodiness. So the aroma certainly can back that up, blending woodiness and earthiness with a touch of sweet. This is definitely one of those teas that is more earthy and robust than sweet, and the presence of loam and wet wood is strong. It reminds me more of a deciduous forest than pine forest, which usually smells sweeter to me.

And into the elephant pot it goes for a brief rinse and steep, the wet leaves are very earthy, blending loam, wet oak wood, a sharp mineral note (specifically it reminds me of limestone) and a finish of pine needles. The liquid is creamy and sweet, the aroma has a heaviness like lying on a forest floor and enjoying the aroma of loam and wood washing over you. It is a very pleasant aroma, earthy and robust but with a balanced sweetness.

The first steep is very smooth, in both moutfeel and taste. I was impressed by the level of smooth, I did one of those mouth-smacking ahhh moments and just had to lean back in my chair and enjoy for a moment. The taste notes blended earthy notes and sweetness to an almost perfection, notes of loam and wet wood with caramel and pine sap, like I said, it was very smooth.

Take two! The aroma did not change much, it has a little more loam and a little more sweetness, so basically it is the same but stronger. Like the first steep this one is crazy smooth, I feel like I should change the music I am listening to (it is Busta Rhymes, not sure he counts as smooth, though that flow is SICK) because wow, this might be one of the most smooth Puerhs I have had. The taste is still really balanced, with the previous earthy notes I get a bit of a mineral note and with the previous sweet notes I get a bit of fig. The aftertaste is almost honey sweet and it lingers for a while.

Guess what, it is time for steep three, the aroma is much sweeter this time, with notes of pine sap, loam, and honey drizzled figs, it smells yummy. The taste is lighter this time, and oddly not really sweet at all, mostly just earthy and loamy with a distinct hint of mineral at the finish. I sat with this tea for a few more steeps, it did not really change much from this one, just continued to fade. It was a delightfully smooth tea, and never got an edge to it which I really liked.

For blog and photos: http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2015/02/wymm-tea-menghai-shou-cooked-pu-erh-in.html

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90
316 tasting notes

This tea is from one of the Wymm “Mystery Boxes”. The packaging was very clever: a folding cardboard box contained a number of packets that looked like folded up paper napkins, though I think the paper is the type used to wrap beengs. The folding was rather clever, though easy to figure out. There was no marking on the outside; you had to unfold the paper to find the name of the tea on a small slip of paper inside with the tea. I suspect the idea was to create “mystery”. It was kind of fun to unwrap the teas, but it makes it a hassle to find a particular tea. i wound up writing numbers on the wrappers and including the number with the tea name in my spreadsheet. That means I have to use my computer to select a tea, but that’s not too bad. (Wynn confirmed that this special packaging only for the mystery box – normal samples would be more conventionally packaged.)

The tea itself was very unusual. In my first pot, it was closer in taste to a sheng than any other shou I have tried. It seems that this should always be the case and it bothers me that it is not. In theory, the shou teas are supposed to have just sped up the aging that the sheng would undergo, yet when I drink a 10 or 12 year old sheng, it doesn’t taste anything like a shou. I can’t see it moving in that direction either.

This is my second pot. The first pot had hints of green vegetables, black pepper, and wood. Only two steeps had the fruity/earthy flavors I associate with shou. By the 5th steep, I would have thought I was drinking an older sheng.

For this pot, I did a very brief 2 s rinse. The first steep was brown in color, like a sheng, rather than red. No sign of the earthy flavors that shou usually shows, but also no veggies. The next few steeps became more shou-like, with a strong black pepper flavor and lots of cha qi. The fourth steep was red (like a shou) but more fruity and sweet than earthy. Long, pleasant finish. 5th steep is similar: fruity and sweet, but without the woody flavors I noticed in the first pot. At this point, it reminded me of some of my favorite shou teas: smooth and fruity but not earthy or bitter. At the 6th steep (1m), the fruit is about gone, but there is a nice woody flavor remaining, like a good aged sheng. Smooth and mild, like a good sherry.

I like the variety from cup to cup, though it makes it harder to rate. Also, the two pots were somewhat different as well. Partly why I love trying different teas.

Preparation
Boiling
ashmanra

I recently read an article that agreed that sheng and shu are apples and oranges, no matter how long the aging.

Ubacat

That sounds vey unusual. I have never had a shu taste like a sheng.

Dr Jim

I don’t want to over-sell the effect. For some cups, it was definitely shou-like, but at others, particularly after the 5th steep, it seemed more like a sheng. The oldest shengs I have had were around 2002, and if I extrapolate from those, this might be a 1990, but I’m reaching. The effect was more pronounced in the first pot, but I tried a second pot and still got the effect.

Ubacat

It sounds very interesting anyway!

WYMMTEA|惟餘莽莽

ashmanra: could you send us the link of that article?

Dr Jim: thanks for the detailed review! I guess it depends on which sheng you are referring to? This matter is subjective itself, but our opinion is that most shu will never taste like sheng because of the quality of tea leaves. Shu are generally made with lower grade tea leaves. However, there are a few shu that are still made with gushu leaves. With on par quality leaves, the shu could achieve similar taste to those of aged sheng, but there will still be differences of course.
D

ashmanra

I have looked for it, but I was just hopping from link to link and looking up different things and I don’t remember where I saw it now! If I come across the article again I will try to post it.

Lion

I got this box of samples from Wymm Teas as well, but my little folded pouches were made with the paper tag sticking out like a tail to show which one they were. They weren’t hidden as in your case. Maybe just coincidence. :3
I really liked this tea. I found it more smooth, rich, and sweet, and less earthy/woody overall than most of the other reviewers seem to.

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81
296 tasting notes

This is one of the samples I got from the lovely people at Wymm tea. I picked a random package to drink while dreading going out in the snow. This is the parcel that I snatched up. It smells like a steamy forest floor. Ooh, I am going to like this shou.

The Coca-Cola colored liquor is earthy, and slightly spicy sweet. Like cinnamon sugar. Although I have had far more interesting shou, I filled my craving for shou quite thoroughly. Thanks Tashi at Wymm! I can’t wait to see what these other grades bring to the table!

Flavors: Dirt, Earth, Sweet

Preparation
2 g 3 OZ / 100 ML
Haveteawilltravel

Please keep me posted on this company. I noticed their presence and I am curious as to how their pu-erh played out :) Its nice to see others have noticed this company.

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