The shu (ripe) puer tea tuocha 2015 is produced by a famous Chinese factory called Xiaguan which, following his recipes, blends and presses different maocha coming from all the Yunnan region to obtain a unique and complex taste in their products. This factory was established in 1941 near the city of Dali in the homonym prefecture and, since the beginning, it used a lot the shape called tuocha (bowl shape) to press their leaves. The brand Xiaguan grown up a lot through the years also because of their geographic position where they can have an optimal climate to aged their teas.
This tuocha is entirely made of shu puer leaves which, judging from the taste of the product, were fermented in a well controlled ambient without a too high humidity level. In the cup you can feel a predominant woody flavor follow by a mountain herbs notes and, in the end, a balsamic touch. In the aftertaste there is also a soft spicy feature while, after several steeps, the first woody flavor will show also an earthy taste maintaining its dry mouthfeel and its fresh touch.
Place of origin
After the harvest the leaves whither under the sunlight for a certain period of time depending on the tea masters evaluations before going into the “killing of the green” phase which is similar to the practice adopted for green teas. In this case, however, the leaves are heated in the iron wok with a lower temperature than the usual standards for a green tea so it is possible to preserve some enzymes capable of changing the the taste of the tea through the time. After the cooking process big quantities of tea leaves are piled, dumped and covered with big sheets to allow the beginning of the fermentation. The producer here have to move and wet constantly the leaves in order to achieve an homogeneous fermentation on all the vegetal mass. When this process ends, generally after o period which can take from 20 to 70 days, the leaves were spread all over the floor to let the microorganisms who started the fermentation dry, and get loose. Now it is possible to (eventually) press the tea and so provide to it the best conditions to being transported and aged. To press the leaves, the producer exposes a certain quantity of the product to a strong steam jet for few seconds in order softened the vegetal mass and then wrap all up in a kind of sock or sac to imprint the final, usually discoid, form. To maintain the desired the form the sac is putted under an heavy stones for several hours or under a mechanical press while the leaves loose the residual moisture caused by the steam in the previous phase.
We invite you to brew this tea in the traditional Chinese style (gong fu cha) in order to extract more from your leaves. Following this preparation you could use 6.5 grams of leaves (about 5 teaspoons) in a gaiwan of 100 ml so you can obtains more infusions with different flavors. After a brief rinse of the leaves in a 100°C water you can go with a first infusion of 15 seconds and, after that, at the same water temperature, you can do multiple infusion adding 5 seconds every steeping time (15 – 20 – 25…)
These leaves could be steep about 9 times.
To prepare the tea in the western style we suggest 3 grams of leaves (about 2 teaspoons) in a 150 ml cup with 100°C water for a steeping time of one minute and a half.
The tea could be filtered if you want to avoid some little piece of the leaves during the tasting time and also the steeping time we recommend here could be modify on your personal preferences.
We recommend you to store this tea in a dry and cool place avoiding the direct sun light on the leaves.