Monday, October 17, 2011

Essence of Tea's 2010 Mansai

Today I'm reviewing Essence of Tea's 2010 Mansai Sheng Puer Cake. Many thanks go out to my friend Israel in MT for sending me this sample.

It appears that a handful of other sheng puer tea lovers already wrote about this tea last year. Check them out at Half Dipper, Sip Tip, and The Skua Steeps. I'll wait until after I publish my post before reading these others.

I can't recall ever trying tea from Mansai before and Essence of Tea states that it is a very remote location on the China / Myanmar border.

The dry leaf is a lovely mix of greens and silvers. They smell alive with subtle hints of pine and sage.

I use my normal puer reviewing parameters (5 grams dry leaf / boiling water / ~100ml gaiwan) and bring the leaves through 8 awesome infusions.

The liquor presents itself as medium bodied, though some infusions were more substantial. It has a peppery, flowery aroma that reminds me of honeysuckle and grassy meadows. For me this is clearly a nice tea and very complex. Some of the pours were a little fruity/appley while others were more herbaceous and incense-like.

I'd say this tea is spirited and feels great lingering in the back of my mouth and throat. The way this tea left my body feeling reminded me a little bit of white tea. I had a solid, alert, high-frequency buzz. This would be my typical response to young, tippy, sheng puer. It's not my usual "puer mellow" but it's not too uncomfortable either.

1 comment:

Alex Zorach said...

This sounds like the sort of Sheng Puer that I would really like. I really like it when teas exhibit tones of pineapple and sage, and these qualities are rare in most green, oolong, or black teas, and when they occur in white teas the tea is often too weak tasting for me.

One thing that is fascinating to me, from reading the other reviews, is how distinct they are...using very different language to describe the nuances of this tea's aroma. It's interesting how perception works.