Another Misty Peak Tea sheng from 300-600 year old trees? Yes please! I can’t say no to sheng pu’er – the stuff is THA BOMB! Just something so magical about raw/sheng pu’er. I’ve been a green/white/oolong drinker the last few months, and I find raw pu’ers really appealing in flavor – they aren’t strong robust like black teas, but not really grassy vegetal like a green. I’ve been recommending raw pu’er to fellow green/white tea drinkers. Be adventurous, hoot!
Dry cake: The tea has a lovely earthy floor scent.
I had no issues breaking off a piece of tea – no drilling or jack hammering involved! The tea was pressed just enough to keep its shape, but not a dense lump – I can tell this cake wasn’t pressed with a machine!
Steeping Instructions: I was given steeping instructions with this pu’er: 3 grams of leaf, 2 rinses with 180F, then I start with 10 second steepings.
I used 185F water due to my kettle. 3 grams of tea seemed not much, but hey, more tea for later? hehehehehe! I added 10 seconds to each early steepings, and from there added 15-30 seconds for later infusions.
Tea owls, I’m getting fast with the camera – one hand making tea and pouring, the other hand holding the camera! Hmm, I just remembered my husband has a camera tripod, I should try it sometime.
First Infusion: The colour is quite light, but once on a white background, the tea is a lovely champagne colour! Smells slightly smokey.
Taste, a little light, but surprisingly sweet and bright. The flavor is warm, like an autumn glow. There are slight cherry blossom notes, but no tartness. A little savory mineral and smokey notes end of sip. Hmmm, I wish I steeped it longer than 10 seconds, but hey, lets see how the next steepings go.
Second Infusion: As I was pouring the gaiwan, I was getting lovely smokey and spice smells. The flavor is even more fruity and 30% stronger! The sip starts off a little smokey, then a sweet fruityness sweeps through the mouth. The fruityness reminds me of apricot, with a little cherry blossom mixed in. The tea finishes off with a savory mineral, but this time with a bit of lingering silky creamy sensation on the lips.
Third Infusion: An even more flavorful steep! 20% stronger than the last steeping, but with the same apricot, cherry blossom and savory smokes mineral notes. Misty Peak Tea’s 2012 Autumn Sheng Pu’er is very relaxing and easy to drink so far.
What I found interesting is the leaves have broken apart already. The colouring already seems different to the 2013 Spring Sheng Pu’er as it has more brown tones.
Fourth Infusion: How is this tea getting better and better? The flavor is getting stronger making all the notes stand out more. The fruityness is blowing my mind – I can’t decide if it’s apricot or cherry. The cherry vibes between that floral cherry blossom and canned deep flavored savory cherry.
I’m getting a little astringency, 1/10 on the Astringe-o-meter. The dryness is purely in my teeth, not the throat. It doesn’t take away from the flavor or the tea or the experience.
Fifth, Sixth Infusion: Okay, I’ve decided this is apricot with a touch of floral. A bit more savory of a finish this infusion, but with that lingering flavor of sweet apricot. Oh my, getting better and better!
I took a long time to drink these infusions, noticing that the apricot flavor lingers for a long time!
Seventh, Eighth, Ninth Infusion: The tea is getting more stronger savory, with a bit of coppery mineral with some spice starting to appear. The smokeyness has pretty much disappeared, leaving the tea very smooth to drink. The apricot sweet notes are still there, especially at end of sip. The astringency here is very interesting. I don’t normally like dryness, but it is so mild, sticking to the teeth – with the apricoty flavors latching on. I can taste that my breath is apricot!
Time to take a moment to enjoy the appearance of this tea again. The leaves are a lovely autumn brown with hints of green and red.
Tenth, Eleventh, Twelfth, Thirteenth, Fourteenth Infusion: 2012 Autumn Sheng Pu’er is finally starting to lighten in flavor with the apricot notes gone. The tea starts off sweet, but that silky smooth unami savory flavor takes over and is simply fantastic! The savory is slightly different, a mix of woody earth and wet stone mineral – all with a clean finish. Occasionally, I will get an echo of apricot aftertaste. The astringency is gone.
Fifteenth Infusion: I’m finally left with a cup of tea that tastes like mineral. The sweetness is all gone. I figure I could get a cup or two more after this, but I’ll stop for now. I’ve seriously drank over 2 liters of water at this point.
Comments: Misty Peak Tea’s 2012 Autumn Sheng Pu’er is a lovely raw/sheng pu’er that develops a great flavors, peaking around the 6th to 9th infusion, with some great mineral savory flavors in the late infusions.
No “Oolong Owl Pu’er party time” with this pu’er – it is very relaxing and contemplative. It is like this autumn pu’er is relaxing me to prepare for winter. I feel more wise drinking this tea, if that makes any sense. Though, I didn’t think about anything ground breaking – mostly about video games and my brazilian jiujitsu practice! I’d love to curl up to this tea in the late fall on a cold afternoon.
From my review of Misty Peak Tea’s 2013 Spring Sheng Pu’er, I found this 2012 Autumn Pu’er to be more chill – the flavoring is less complex and buzzing – it’s like this cake has just figured out its personality and is settling down. The astringency is much less and the flavor output is much more – the flavor develops stronger and I got more steepings!
Overall, very lovely pu’er – if you want a solid tea, give this Misty Peak Tea’s 2012 Autumn Sheng Pu’er a try!
Teal owl with Pu’er pick. Hmmm… not sure if an owl handling a pu’er pick is safe, but I don’t see anything on the internet warning that an owl shouldn’t have a pu’er pick, you know?
(tea provided for review, thank you!)