2012 Gushu Xiao Bing – very good honey sweet pu-erh tea from China – Birma border villages raw material.
Tea trees are about three hundreds years old and remain unmanaged. The natives living in isolated areas where transportation is difficult, they carry the tea on the backs and walk to the border.
This tea is made in smaller quantities by Mingshan tea house. 200g per cake, 5 cakes in one bamboo tong
Brewing in small gaiwan to try it. Rinse for 40 sec. as it is young pu-erh yet. I’ll use shop’s pictures this time, because I only have a 25 gram sample of this tea, but packaging is beautiful and I can’t show it to you.
First steep at 100ºC for 40 sec. has some young puer leather undertone, yet it’s overwhelmingly honey sweet and floral. Very nice and unexpected.
Second steep I make at 90ºC for 2 min.Too long, it became astringent, still it’s good and somehow deep. Reminds me Greek Retsina flavor.
Third steep at 100ºC for 1min. Again a bit bitter, took some time to put wine picture 🙂 But honey flavor is great. Light golden liquor.
Fourth steep at 90ºC for 1.5 min.: like wine. Lingering, watering and alive. What a fun. Will try lower temperature.
Fifth steep at 80ºC for 4min.: more like caramel flavour. Full of potential. Good.
Ok, let’s do it right this time, 5th steep, 100ºC and 30 sec., many of young Puers are giving best liquor on 5th steep. Very subtle a bit sour but sweet nice yellow liquor with very light woody undertone. Probably a result of my previous experiments. Need to increase time now.
Sixth at 90ºC for 2 min.: this one is good. Slight fresh mushrooms aroma, light apricot – caramel flavor with little earthy undertones, no astringency at all.
Following several steeps produce non astringent clean nice tea liquor with mushrooms aroma and a moderate pleasant caramel taste, slightly sparkling. My tasting went a bit wrong with times etc. But I liked the tea.
This tea is nice and sweet. Hard to imagine how good it will become in several years. Cover paper is also beautiful, that is important to me, not to see simple and stupid Photoshop designs on pu-erh’s cover