Saturday Morning Tea

Remember my post several weeks ago where I revealed that I once didn’t like green tea? Well, there’s another tea that took me awhile to, shall we say, appreciate for its unique quality. A China tea which is processed in a way very different from all other teas. Can you guess what it is?

If you guessed China Pu-erh tea then you are absolutely correct. So, in keeping with my goal of being open to all of the different kinds of teas, this morning I introduce to you China Organic 1st Grade Pu-erh tea.

Because of fermentation during its processing, this is the darkest tea I know. To look at it in my tea bowl, one would almost think that I’m having a cup of coffee instead of tea, it’s that dark. You can read more about this type of tea and its processing here and here.

I steeped the dark brown leaves for 8 minutes in boiling point  (212F) water. The tea liquor got so darkly translucent that I could hardly see the leaves as they steeped.

I’m wondering if any coffee drinkers enjoy Pu-erh tea even though the only thing they really have in common is their dark color. The aroma and flavor are worlds apart. Are you a coffee drinker who enjoys Pu-erh?

The aroma is sweet and reminds me of an autumn walk in the forest and the smell of newly fallen leaves. Very earthy.

The tea liquor is incredibly sweet, like the intense sugars of dried fruit, and silky smooth. There is a Keemun-like burgundy/smoky note but it takes a supporting role to the predominant earthy flavor. This is a tea that you need to approach with absolutely no expectations, set those aside, or comparisons to your other experiences with tea. You may find, as I have, that this is a tea that draws you in with its sweet, dark nature and you want to experience and discover more.

“All you need is deep within you waiting to unfold and reveal itself.  All you have to do is be still and take time to seek for what is within, and you will surely find it.”  ~Eileen Caddy

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6 comments on “Saturday Morning Tea

  1. Kevin Knox says:

    Hi Karen,

    Well I’m an expert coffee taster with a serious love of tea, but much as I’ve tried to be open-minded about it have never tasted a pu-erh that didn’t make me think I was drinking porcini mushroom soaking liquid laced with some mud. You’re right about the coffee color though, and I have no doubt it’s good for you.

    One just has to have a wider palate “bandwidth” and kudos to you for encouraging all of us in that direction.

  2. artandtea says:

    Thanks so much for your feedback, Kevin!

  3. Scott from Ohio says:

    HEY Karen:

    The only PU-ERH I’ve tried is the Tao Cha which I enjoyed. I didn’t steep it as long (around 4-5 min), so it wasn’t as dark. I remember the liquor being dark with a purplish hue. Definitely earthy with lots of sweetness-the sweetness surprised me. Your description is right on. I can see why Kevin describes it with the mushroom quality, but to me that is just part of this teas earthy charm. Pu-erh teas are the earthiest teas I’ve tried.

    This is one group of teas every tea drinker should try. It is velvety smooth and sweet and surprisingly good. Great review!

  4. artandtea says:

    Thanks Scott! Another Pu-erh lover, yay!

  5. Scott from Ohio says:

    HEY Karen:

    While I really did enjoy my Pu-erh experience & Pu-erh tea, I forget to reorder it because there are so many other teas I want it slips my mind, but it is a tea I could very easily drink every day, especially in the warmer months. Note to self: [At least make room for a sample or two in your next order!].

  6. […] In my cup this morning is a very dark tea, a China tea called Organic Pu-Erh 2nd Grade. Back in June, I wrote about the 1st grade here. […]

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