Ancient Sheng Puer Tea is harvested from trees that are at least 30 to 40 years old. Its leaves are extremely valuable, given that each year the harvest is limited so as not to weaken the plant excessively. Many experts have praised its intense, enveloping aroma and golden liquor with a complex aromatic range, with notes of fruit and incense that linger on the palate for a long time. This tea comes from the mountainous area around the city of Menghai in southern Yunnan.
Tasting – Sight and smell
Ancient Sheng Puer tea features non-whole leaves of various shades of green, dark brown and beige, in an elegant mix of colors. Once infused, the leaves give off an intense fruity aroma of pear, hints of incense and hints of fragrant resin. In the cup the liqour has a pale gold color with orange hues: the body is silky and enveloping, and the slight note of astringency on the finish – typical of sheng – remains pleasant.
GONG FU CHA
The first infusion of Ancient Sheng Puer Tea gives a tea with a sweet taste, reminiscent of wildflower honey, and fruity, with notes of ripe pear. There is a subtle finish of incense. This note of incense becomes more intense with the second infusion, which reveals a slight astringency and delicate hints of leather. The third infusion brings out more woody scents, with hints of pine wood: the fruity taste of the pear remains on the finish, although less sweet than at the beginning.
The first sip of Ancient Sheng Puer Tea is extremely fruity and reminiscent of pear nectar and sultanas. The attack is soft and sweet, with notes of honey; the tea then evolves in the mouth, revealing notes of incense and hints of eucalyptus, thus leaving a sensation of remarkable freshness on the palate. The astringency is almost non-existent, while the long sweet persistence returns on notes of pear and honey.
Menghai, Yunnan – China
How to prepare
We strongly recommend infusing Ancient Sheng Puer Tea in the traditional Chinese method (gong fu cha) to better enjoy these leaves. Following this preparation, 5 grams of leaves (about 3 teaspoons) can be used in a 150-mL gaiwan to make multiple infusions with different tastes.
After a quick rinse of the leaves in 95°C water, an initial 20-second infusion can be made. Keeping the water at the same temperature, you can then continue to exploit the same leaves by adding more water and increasing the infusion time by 5 seconds each time (20-25-30…). This tea has a longevity of about 8 infusions.
For a classic preparation in the Western style, we recommend using 3 grams of leaves (about 2 teaspoons) in a 200-mL cup with 95°C water for a 2-minute infusion time.
The tea can be filtered for greater ease at the moment of tasting, and also the infusion times indicated above are intended to be purely indicative, so you can also adjust according to your personal taste.
It is advisable to store Puer Sheng Ancient Tea in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight.