I always like trying a new pu-erh. But for some reason, and despite some excellent reviews, I could not like this one very much. I think it is still young and needs a few more years to achieve the maturity that will make its sharp astringency more mellow.
It all started slightly sweet with delicate floral and honey notes and ended bitterly. The smell on the empty cup was quite pleasant and made me appreciate this tea more. By the time I drank this tea, I did not know if it was made out of purple tea variety of pu-erh. And I did not see any purple colour on the leaves. Perhaps some reddish edges. The seller mentions that the high level of anthocyanin the leaves contain, gives this tea its purple colour. I think they might have meant the liquor.
If you look at the liquid, you will see that it is slightly cloudy (I used the end of the package which had some little pieces) and strange orangey colour. I found it interesting but did not think that it might be relevant to the purple leaves.
This was the second purple leaves sheng pu-erh I have reviewed, the first one was from 2010. For some reason, I could enjoy neither of them as much as I hoped for. More time, another try? I will definitely give it another go.
Origin: Lincang, Yunnan
Harvest time: 2015
Leave colour: Shades of dark brown and green
Liquor colour: Cloudy cupper
Tea aroma: Honey and smoky aromas
Tea taste: Starts sweet with floral notes ends with astringency
Steeping/brewing: You can use around 100°C water and brew about 6 g for up to one minute in gongfu style or up to three minutes in Western-style. You can brew the leaves many times (until the taste is lost). To each infusion add additional time. Experiment for a result that suits your taste.
Shelf life: 30 years and more(to improve shelf-life store the sealed tea leaves in a dry, ventilated place with low temperatures and away from odour)