My good friend traveled to Malaysia and asked me what to bring for a present. I’m regularly reading expert articles from Hojo tea shop for a long time already, so I’ve asked her to visit the shop in Kuala Lumpur to bring me some professionally picked tea.
She told me the shop is a very posh one, located between Louis Vuitton and Prada, and prices were high enough, especially for Malaysia. On the phone we decided to take this small 200g ripe pu-erh bing for 35 euro. Here’s a very informative article about this tea from Hojo site.
When it’s finally arrived to me it was vacuum packed and already traveled many countries for about a month. When I opened it, there was a very strong and really good sweet Northern herring smell, that really scared me. But I knew that each fragrance taken to absolute could be very different, from what was intended. So I’ve released it from vacuum packaging, and gave it 2 weeks to breath before tasting. The tea get rid of a strong herring fragrance fast enough, and the smell became more pleasant, towards pharmacy and cocoa. It always smelled elegantly and sweet, even when smelled of a good herring 😈 Vacuum packaging is a real problem for puer teas, but there was no choice.
In Chinese, Gong Ting means Imperial and Jin Hao means golden hair.
Drinking My Last Stock of 2012 Ripe Pu-erh.
Dry cake after half a year in Israel, with out high humidity near the seashore smells of cinnamon with dark chocolate. Beautiful reddish brown lovely small cake with distinct very tiny leaves, some of them brighter than others. The cake is strong enough, especially central part. I’d like to have it stored more time, but couldn’t avoid myself from finishing it fast enough. It’s too classy and interesting to leave for some distant future days.
Rinse: Milk chocolate, cocoa aroma, when touched water at the bottom of gaiwan. I rinsed only one time, because the bing is almost finished and I want to get a thicker liquor out of it, before it ends.
1st steep at 95°C for 1.5 min.: Very dark Licorice tone, sour thick liquor with lemony sweet aftertaste. Similar feel, like after you bite some cinnamon stick. No bitterness at all. Profound taste. I don’t know what I gonna do without it when the mini big will be finished.
2nd steep at 95°C for 1.5 min.: cake part in gaiwan isn’t decomposed yet. It smells as dark chocolate on cocoa base. Very dark musk liquor very sweet and a bit sour undertone. dark chocolate, pharmacy tones. Bitter chocolate aroma. Aftertaste is amazing: it’s sparkling all over my throat, like mint or like after cannabis smoking. Very interesting. Empty cup smells of cocoa again.
3rd steep at 95°C for 1 min.:very tasty thick dark tea with licorice, but sweet flickering aftertaste.
It’s good up to 7 long steeps, or 10 shorter ones. This tea is never bitter, but always sweet, with fruity sourness, not honey sweet, but fruity sweet aftertaste. Almost no earthiness, maybe only on second steep. It is penetrating ones mind, sometimes I’m waking up in the morning already knowing that I want to drink this tea only. Me absolutely can’t forget its elevated taste.
Until now this is the best ripe pu-erh I’ve tasted. I’ll probably never get it again, because Israel-Malaysia relations are really bad, probably the post office will not send me anything from Malaysia. Look at the famous Malaysian passport 😛 If you can advice such a good ripe puerh, please comment. Meanwhile I think I’ll explore some ripe puerhs from Tea Classico probably. They owe me a tea tasting 😉