Time flies when you’re having fun with tea! A year already? It seems like it wasn’t too long ago when I enjoyed Misty Peak Teas‘s 2012 Autumn and 2013 Spring pu’er. I’m curious on how this Autumn 2014 Sheng Yiwu Mountain Pu’er stacks up with the amazing cherry blossom, apricot deliciousness of Misty Peak Teas‘s 2012 Autumn.
Autumn 2014 Sheng Yiwu Mountain Pu’er is a stone pressed loose tangle of dark leaves with hints of amber and silver leaves.
Misty Peak Teas included very thorough and informative instructions. I followed them fairly closely, using 3.5 grams of tea. I steeped my Autumn 2014 Sheng Yiwu Mountain Pu’er in a yixing pot with 190F filtered water. Today I have a trio of orange creamsicle Tea Owls helping out.
I did 10 second steepings for 5 rounds. After the 5th infusion I began to add 10 additional seconds per infusion. At the 11th infusion, I increased the additional steep time to 30 seconds, and at the 14th round, 1 minute.
I did one very fragrant 2 second rinse before tasting. My first cup and many cups after, Autumn 2014 Sheng Yiwu Mountain Pu’er was a pale peach cup of tea with a dry creamy scent.
Tasting of Misty Peak Teas’ Autumn 2014 Sheng Yiwu Mountain Pu’er
First Infusion: Autumn 2014 Sheng Yiwu Mountain Pu’er sips in light with a honey fruit sweetness. As the sip progressed, there was a slight earthly quality in the background with a very delicious creamy vanilla bean texture. Also present, a light astringency, 1/10 on the Oolong Owl Astringe-o-meter, which adds just a slight bit of dryness to add a nice lingering aftertaste of earthy fruity citrus tang notes.
Second Infusion: This is where the magic begins, maybe I should of done a second rinse. The flavor of Autumn 2014 Sheng Yiwu Mountain Pu’er is stronger, with a clearer and deeper taste. The earthly flavor has increased to a dry, flat forest floor flavor. I am transported to an late autumn forest with low hanging clouds or fog blocking the tops of the trees. The air is dry cold and crisp. In that forest, a single peach or persimmon tree. End of sip of Autumn 2014 Sheng Yiwu Mountain Pu’er has a great fruity, subtle, persimmon peach flavor with a bit of a citrus tang floating in a fog of creamy texture. Great contrast to the dry earth flavor! The aftertaste of fruit lingers after each sip, encouraging me to take my time while drinking this tea.
Third, Fourth and Fifth Infusion: Very good steepings here and one of my favorites of Autumn 2014 Sheng Yiwu Mountain Pu’er. The flavor is pretty consistent though changing very slowly. Though with these three steepings in particular, the flavor is getting more crisp and earthy like a cold wind hitting our timeless forest. The creamy texture is also getting sharper. All this, with 10 second steepings each! That’s a lot of flavor for only 10 seconds of steeping – try and get that with your everyday tea! Also, a gorgeous cup of tea!
Sixth, Seventh, Eighth and Ninth Infusion: At this point, I increased the steeping times, adding an extra 10 seconds to each infusion. The tea is beginning to develop a light smokey flavor, like a campfire in the distance. 1/10 on the smoke-o-meter. The ninth steeping was very good – the balance of fruityness, earth, tang, and creamy texture hit a perfect level.
The leaves got pretty full at this point, peaking out of my small yixing pot.
Eleventh, Twelfth, Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Infusion: The flavor of Autumn 2014 Sheng Yiwu Mountain Pu’er is very consistent, though I’m fighting to keep the intensity going by adding extra steep time. The earthly flavor has a bit of nuttyness going on, I think hazelnuts, as if there was a few lingering nuts left in our forest that the squirrels didn’t find.
I found Misty Peak Teas‘ Autumn 2014 Sheng Yiwu Mountain Pu’er to be a complex yet consistent sheng pu’er with excellent contrasting earth, nutty, fruit and creamy notes. The flavors didn’t shift that much with each infusion, but each cup was complex enough to love even after 15 steepings.
Misty Peak Teas‘ Autumn 2014 Sheng Yiwu Mountain Pu’er is also a great tea to enjoy slowly, savoring each sip to take in the entire journey in each cup. I ended up taking my time drinking this tea, looking out the window, spotting the occasional humming bird zipping around my pomegranate tree. Actually, this tea session was the longest one I’ve done for Oolong Owl!
Bonus: Tea Owls are handy for sipping down too-full cups of tea!
(tea provided for review)