The nuggets give a clean, starchy, hazelnut flavored soup with a bit of a pepper sensation in the throat. Later steeps will benefit from letting the nuggets rest between infusions, as they are very dense.
“The nuggets give a clean, starchy, hazelnut flavored soup with a bit of a pepper sensation in the throat. Later steeps will benefit from letting the nuggets rest between infusions, as they are very...” Read full tasting note
“So, I got this as a free sample in my latest Yunnan Sourcing order….Thanks Scott! I am sad to learn that this is out of stock for it is a great ripe. This is my first Cha Tou (Nugget) tea and I am...” Read full tasting note
2009 Yunnan Sourcing "Cha Tou Sheng Yun" Brick Ripe 250g
Compression date: July 15th, 2009
Fermentation time: August-September 2007
Harvest Area: Jinggu County of Simao Prefecture
"Cha Tou Sheng Yun" (茶头圣韵 aka Cha Tou Sage Verse) is the is the sixth tea created under the new Yunnan Sourcing / Rui Cao Xiang label, and the first ripe tea! This label is a co-project between Yunnan Sourcing “Yun Zhi Yuan” (云之源) and our Korean counter-part “Rui Cao Xiang” (瑞草香).
Cha Tou is a kind of tea nugget that forms naturally from the pressures of compression and heat that occurs during the fermentation process. Typically during fermentation process to make ripe pu-erh there is a pile of tea about 1 meter high. It is kept wet to allow the fermentation process and the pile is turned every few days to allow for an even degree of fermentation, moving the tea from the bottom of the pile (where it is hotter and wetter) to the top of the pile where it is cooler and drier. The "cha tou" are the leaves that ball up and get stuck together. The best cha tou are ones that have not been over-fermented and are smaller in size.
We drank more than 10 different "cha tou" before deciding on this one, we think the best of them all! The tea was fermented in 2007 at the Jinggu Tea Factory in Simao. It is creamy and smooth, already having lost most of its post-fermentation funk it’s tea liquor is a clear and deep red-wine color. It can easily be infused more than 25 times!!!
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So, I got this as a free sample in my latest Yunnan Sourcing order….Thanks Scott! I am sad to learn that this is out of stock for it is a great ripe. This is my first Cha Tou (Nugget) tea and I am very pleased. It has about 5 or 6 years age so it has no funky pile taste and has developed a really smooth flavor. I steeped 7g in 100ml (gaiwan) at 210f. I gave two customary rinses and started with a 10 second steep increasing by a few seconds…though I had to back off a bit once the nuggets started opening up and giving up the goods. It has a very nice honey/raisin sweet smell from the wet leaf. I found myself with my nose stuck in the gaiwan quite often. The taste is not far off the nose. A very nice viscous mouthfeel with a raisin and enjoyable tobacco sweetness. There were hints of honey and even a bit of cinnamon spice on the 4th steep. I have gone seven steeps so far with no signs of this giving out anytime soon! A delicious ripe with a nice calming qi. I wish I could purchase the brick but no mas of this year so I think I’ll give the 2011 (second pressing) a try sometime soon. I recommend trying some of Scott’s selection of Cha Tou. Ripe pile turds at their best!