Received as a free 15g sample with a 2022 order. Thank you, Yunnan Sourcing :)
Dry leaf scent is dark and sweet like cola and earthy chocolate. Once brewed, the aroma from the cup is spicy and sweet, full of bread dough and cumin, fenugreek and camphor.
Dry storage yields earthy but bright and clean flavor, smooth and mouth-coating. Well aged taste of TCM, bread dough, petrichor, peppery betel nut?, gentle camphor; tones of sturdy dark wood furniture, root beer, tobacco. One steep has an overtone of dried red fruits. The tea finishes very mineral and cleansing leaving little aftertaste. Later some acidity comes out in the back of the mouth.
The energy is fairly neutral, not as grounding and filling as I would have liked at this moment. Contemplative thoughts arise and wander, nothing too deep or easily solidified.
Overall a very satisfying pot of tea, just wish the lingering acidic taste wasn’t so prevalent. Better served as a digestive than a standalone :) After the rinse and initial steep, the leaf will easily deal with being forgotten but don’t expect to go beyond 3 steeps.
Haven’t had shou pu’er in ages. Seemed fitting as I recuperate from minor surgery this past Thursday. Need warmth in the body, in the belly. Late February, grey, cold.
The day before Valentine’s, I drove up Sonoma Mountain, elevation roughly 2300ft, with the Apple of My Eye to watch the sunset while the life-taking wind howled over and down the ridge around us. My old truck, a manual transmission, struggles on the steep inclines that follow sharp turns. The road was not laid on contour. Ever. The truck chugs about a 1/4 tank of gas to gear its way through ranchland studded with boulders and a few sweeps of gnarled oak trees that tunnel over the road, all the way up to the sunset views. That stretch of road now has fresh barb wire fencing up to the edge of the asphalt. Not much room to pull over. Somebody wants to discourage these excursions. We’re polite and respectful of the space, though, and I know where to park to be seen around the curve.
Even the highest elevation grasslands and shrublands are finally turning green.
This time of year a non-threatening thunder speaks; it usually precedes a hailstorm. Nothing larger than pieces of perlite fall from the sky and accumulate, glistening and frosty, in the spaces between vegetation or in the corner of one’s front stoop. Instead of hail, the rumbling proclamation of this past Thursday’s sky brought snow to the higher elevations. Sonoma Mountain, along with many other locations in California, received a generous layer of white. It was nice to see the snow line along the range from my spot here in the valley before the low clouds hid it away. I haven’t seen the mountain since Friday. Then again, I’ve been sleeping.
Song pairing: Stevie Wonder — “You Are the Sunshine of My Life”
Flavors: Bread Dough, Bright, Cacao, Chocolate, Cola, Cumin, Dark Wood, Dried Fruit, Earthy, Ginseng, Lemon, Mineral, Pancake Syrup, Pepper, Petrichor, Red Fruits, Root Beer, Smooth, Spicy, Tangy, Tobacco, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Vanilla, Walnut, Yeast