Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Sheng Tuo Cha 1990

       This Tuo is pretty old and has been sitting as a generous sample in my store room since this April, airing and getting a bit of the middle europe climate. It comes from 1990, I got it from a taiwaness tea master, as I would call him, I met him back in Yixing in April this year.

I tasted this tea once still in Yixing and kind of don't know, not much liked it. It's a kind of private production too. I've drunk a nice Tuo after from year 1970 and that was good and it's price was also like for a modest, new car. So let's see if gotta like it this time. It won't be a gushu quality of latest years of course.  This is a mass production, although not that large scale once as it was an order by a private individual.

I've cleaned my teapot, had a new Brita filter changed and beside my daily job and opened the window, cold and sunny autumn day, the session may start.

The warm tea chunks smell like an ordinary old sheng, although there is a hint of some fruityness...

Let's proceed with two rinsing, but ohh, the first gives a colourfull brew,  I decide the rinsing water to save in the matcha bowl.  Drink it later. ohh how barbarian is this, such a nice bowl. I had no matcha for many years and I thought its a pity not to use the bowl.

Ohh, the first brew has an aged collour indeed. The taste is pretty rough, just can't describe it, not much like it. Maybe I just overbrew it.

The second, ohh, there tastes that I don't expect and don't even find in pu-erh, like bitter candy, medicine like, interesting, keep going, one more sip, hups to matcha bowl and let's see the third.  Kind of fermentation ongoing taste, anyway still interesting and not that repulsive. I hope it has some other good effect to my health.

The third, it's a woody taste, like from a cognac or an aged oak cask brandy, its very interested where this is come from, this is a nice sing and difference between sheng and shu pu-erh. Shu will never reveal such a suprises. The taste is getting pretty good and it's appealing to me. The storage is pretty clean, it must be from Taiwan, check later. This woody taste might be the bamboo or ...

This taste reminded me a bit to a story around my first pu-erh tea I had in one open air teahouse in the old town of Prague, just a wooden hut with a garden, really relaxing place. I had there some pu-erh, no idea what was it but taste struck me and even despite of the taste I kept drinking it. My friend asked me, after taking a sip "do you drink this tea beacuse you like or you drink it because you want to look interesting/different". It was certainly a shu pu, pretty rough.  I have not touch pu-erh a long years after.

The tea soup does not have any disturbing features, I suspect its aging, making it's transformation. I don't think the tea master will sell it for 200euro/250g just because it's old.

The tea keeps its strengh and even goes to other dimension, barrique taste is giving its a bing punch, even developing a nice aftertaste.

Further brews, have a pretty good feel of the cognac aged taste, a very good pick for cognac lovers.   This is a newly found taste for me, it is well, carefully packed in a melow, fine aftertaste. I really have to learn more, drink more aged stuff.

This is about the 8th steep, its getting pretty sweet, changing and not fading, the leaves must have been pretty good. This is not a bad tea at all. I am hurrying to the next round.

This was an adventures tea tasting I must say. I will return to this tea even maybe I will buy some to have it tried by others. 

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