Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Teavivre: Ripened Rose Pu-Erh Mini Tuocha, A Tea Review

I am very patiently waiting for the timer in the kitchen to go ding, yes it goes ding when there is stuff. Today's stuff is Sushi rice, and by patiently I mean HURRY UP I AM HUNGRY!! While waiting I thought to myself, this is a perfect time for day 2 of Pu Erh week to come into existence.
Tuocha are so cute!

Today I am reviewing Teavivre's Ripened Rose Pu-Erh Mini Tuocha. Initially I reviewed this tea about a month ago and stored it in my notebook, but I decided to toss that review out the window (I actually did tear the page out of my notebook) and taste it again using my new Gaiwan. I want to be fancy while waiting for food! The aroma of this little Tuocha is fairly sweet, mixing faint roses with an underlying yeastiness. There are also notes of leather, earthiness, and a touch metallic. It has that slightly fishy 'Asian Market' aroma that I associate with Pu Erh (and really is my favorite thing about them) and makes me feel all tingly with anticipation. Time for some fancy Gaiwan action!

The steeped leaves look a lot less like a Tuocha now, as expected, with a little rosebud resting on the top of them, it is quite pretty. The aroma is intense! Rich earthy and mineral notes mixing with leather and heady rose. The liquid (in my little bubble cup, no less) is rosy, earthy, and a touch of that market aroma.
I made a mess

The first steep is a bit bitter, kinda like chewing on leather. It is earthy and rich with delicate notes of rose that smooth out the edges as an aftertaste. The bitterness is not unpleasant, it is not the 'too many tannins, turn your mouth inside out' bitter, but the same kind of bitter you find in certain wood. Yes I have chewed on wood, I like tasting random things. It specifically reminds me of oak. As it cools it gets much smoother, almost becoming buttery with a mildly metallic aftertaste.
So need a tea tray!

The aroma on the second steeping is less like leather and more oak and rose, it is very mild and smooth. The taste is also much more oaky and sharp, this tea certainly lets you know it is there in your mouth. There is a slightly mushroom taste as well as a loamy note. The second steep has transported me to an oak forest and that is wonderful.

The third steep's aroma is bringing in more of the market smell with a touch of underlying sweetness, like pipe tobacco. The taste is a touch milder, still very oaky but with more sweetness, like baked bread and pipe tobacco. Oddly this steep transports me to a Victorian Gentleman's library, though oddly he has a few roses in his library. The rose sneaks in as an aftertaste and is very subtle.

The fourth is oak and roses and not much else in its aroma. The same can be said of the taste, mostly oak wood with just a hint of roses. There is a slightly metallic aftertaste and a hint of leather as well when it cools.
it is getting paler!
The fifth and final steep, only final because my kettle is on empty and my rice is almost ready. I am almost positive this tea has quite a few steeps left in it. The aroma is heady roses and sweet tobacco. The taste is very mild, subtle roses, oak, and a hint of loam. As an aftertaste there is a honey sweetness with a hint of roses. I noticed as I was sipping this tea that I started feeling kinda odd, like sitting in a sauna or the like. I am pretty sure this tea is making me sweat out all impurities (does Pu Erh do that?) and it is making me feel refreshed. This was an awesome tasting experience, I certainly must do it again!

1 comment:

  1. I am pretty sure you already know this, but here is the health benefits of Pu Erh :This is from
    Health Benefits

    Whether in tuo cha or loose leaf forms, these unique teas have long been used in China for the medicinal benefits. The soothing properties, aid digestion and are perfect after heavy or greasy meals. More recent studies indicate powerful cholesterol lowering effects, blood cleansing properties and aid significantly in weight loss efforts. Many published studies have been done showing the enormous health benefits of this wonderful tea. The most eye opening of these studies was conducted in France several years ago. A blind study was conducted with 500 hyperlipidemia patients (individuals with advanced cholesterol conditions, usually controlled with medication). Half of the controlled group consumed 3-4 cups of Pu'erh daily, while the rest of the participants were given something else. After a 30-day period the results showed that drinking Pu'erh on a regular basis could significantly lower cholesterol and further research confirmed that Pu'erh was as effective as the most advanced cholesterol lowering medications available. This is just one of the many healthy benefits of this delicious tea.
    I really must start drinking it.