This tea is captivating on many fronts. From a strong and thick/ viscous body— to no astringency and a cool minty feeling on the tongue and back of throat— as well as great huigan— or returning sweetness. This tea is from the famous Ice Island Town known as Bing Dao, in Mengku— Yunnan Province— and though not yet aged a very long time, is incredibly sweet due to the age of the tree itself and the unique geographical surrounding features. The tea is an all around winner, from sweetness, strong cha qi, great longevity, to overall enthralling for the nervous system and palette to experience.
Our personal journey with raw puerh is constantly deepening and changing.
We used the barriers of the softening effects of older trees, and long term wet stored fermentation as a way to initially experience both the grounding sensation, and medicinal essence of puerh we read about and sought after— in a manor that was safeguarded from the not so pleasant happenings of bush tea, younger terroir, improper fermentation, or what have you eventually becomes the tea you one is consuming.
This understanding that puerh had to be a ripe (artificially fermented) in order to have this smooth, grease cutting, grounding body experience, was slowly starting to fade away as we engaged with our Endless River 04’ Yuxi Raw Puerh, which opened our minds to the smoothness of what most commonly know as shou puerh in the West— however holding the same benefits of continuous fermentation of the raw puerh— that had been being consumed in the East for its medicinal properties.
This path now comes even further with the understanding of deep, thick, and viscous raw puerh that are sweet and medicinal even at a very limited stage in their aging process— behold— our new Hummingbirds Grace 2017 “Ice Island” Raw Puerh from Mengku, Yunnan Province. This small village, known as Bingdao, is very hard to get to, let alone be allowed to harvest tea from— as the trees are very old, and the local terroir makes the brew incredibly sweet, with strong cha qi, and a thick long lasting brew with no astringency. The tea was named “Hummingbirds Grace” because as I sipped into the first sample of this viscous, and huigan rich (returning sweetness) elixir, a hummingbird graced my tea session for the first few sips, reminding me of the softness and simplicity of nature in its best and truest forms.
Water Temp: 190F-212F
Amount: 4-7g tea, 140-200ml Pot
1st Infusion: 10-12 seconds.
2nd Infusion: 12-16 seconds
3rd Infusion: 14-22 seconds
4th Infusion: 20-30 seconds
5th Infusion: 30+ seconds (add 20 or more seconds of any subsequent infusions after 5)