2015 Spring Tianming Long Pa Village You Le Mountain Gushu Ancient Tree Raw Pu’er from Mud and Leaves*.
Another thing you sometimes run into with Pu-er tea is really long names!
“This raw / sheng pu’er tea was picked in Spring 2015 and is a single estate tea from Long Pa 龙怕 Tea Garden in You Le Mountain 攸乐山 (also known as Ji Nuo Mountain 基诺山). The tea trees in this garden are ancient trees at 150 + years old.”Mud and Leaves
First they give you the the year and season that the tea was harvested. Spring leaves are usually more highly prized, and thus more expensive than tea leaves from the Autumn harvest. They are perceived as being more tender and elegant in the flavor of the tea they produce.
Tianming is the tea company in Menghai that produced the tea.
“Long Pa Tea Garden” is the specific tea tree garden on “You Le” Mountain where the leaves came from. That the tea leaves came from a specific garden and were not blended leaves from the whole mountain or the whole region, makes them more special and seasonal.
“Gushu Ancient Tree” is a bit redundant, as “Gushu” is basically the Chinese word for “Ancient Tree”. This term can be a little squishy, but in this case, we will take Mud and Leaves word for it that the trees these leaves came from were 150+ years old, pretty old for tea trees, though not unusually old, for old Pu’erh tea trees. As the tea trees age, the feeling is that they gain character and the tea they produce has more energy or life force, similar to how doing Tai Chi in an old forest feels different from doing Tai Chi in a parking lot.
Smelling the leaves, you can tell for a pretty young raw Pu’erh this is already starting to shed it’s youthful exuberance and develop some nice dried fruit character!
This follows through in the brewed tea, there is good body to the soup, and a tasty bitterness, which lingers and fades to sweetness. It is all very clean, with no off flavors or smells. The cha qi, or tea energy, is focused and calm.
This is a very nice Pu’erh as it is, but I am super curious how it would develop in a year or five.
*I received this tea as part of a sampler I won from Mud and Leaves after entering an instagram based contest.
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