Tea: Pu-erh Classic

A Ripened (Shou) Pu-erh from Rishi Tea - O Organic

Picture of Pu-erh Classic
Brand:Rishi Tea
Style:Ripened (Shou) Pu-erh
Region:Yunnan, China
# Ratings:1 View All
Product page:Pu-erh Classic

Review of Pu-erh Classic

5 of 103 of 53 of 565 of 100

This is my first unflavored puerh, so I don't have anything to compare it to. Mine was aged for 3 years so it might be slightly different from the normal version, but probably not that much. I had to air it out for a week to get rid of the smell of fish. Once that went away, the aroma of the dry leaves became earthy in a sort of wet way, like the ground near a river, with a similar aroma in the brewed cup. The taste is hard to describe. What stands out to me more than the flavor is the mouthfeel, which is thick and soft, if that makes sense. It's also quite mellow in its total lack of bitterness and astringency, regardless of how strongly it's brewed. The only identifiable flavor I ever get from this is an occasional strong, lingering chocolaty note in the finish, which is hard to bring out but is very enjoyable when I can get it.

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Alex Zorach wrote:
on May 17th, 2018

Before you draw many conclusions about Pu-erh, I recommend trying some sheng (raw) Pu-erh. The shou/shu or ripened Pu-erh, which this is an example of, can be seen as a "shortcut" process, and although there are some good examples of them out there, and some people do like this type of tea, I find that with a few exceptions, I don't like them, and I know quite a few people who feel similarly.

I find that both those "wet earthy" notes, and "fishy" notes are much less common, often absent entirely, in raw Pu-erh.

I think your comment about mouthfeel though is on to something...a lot of Pu-erh enthusiasts describe the mouthfeel and palate sensations when drinking a tea as one of the most interesting and key aspects of the tea, more so than in, say, green or black tea where flavor and aroma are more important.

I'm glad this was an okay experience, some people try Pu-erh and hate it right from the start...I'd recommend though holding off on drawing too many conclusions until you've tried some examples of the raw stuff. Rishi has usually sold some raw Pu-erh. I also recommend looking at Yunnan sourcing, which has a great selection and very good prices.

Alex wrote:
on May 17th, 2018

I do plan on trying raw puerh soon. I've been looking at Yunnan Sourcing, but the cost of shipping and lack of samples less than 25 grams means that I won't be buying from them until I want a larger order. Are there any websites where I could get two or three different samples shipped for around $10?

Alex wrote:
on May 21st, 2018

I ordered a few samples from White2Tea while they had free shipping over the weekend. One ripe and two raw, though all are from 2017, so I'll still need to try aged raw pu-erh.

Alex Zorach wrote:
on May 24th, 2018

I have yet to try anything from White2Tea but they look legit at a glance. I'll be curious to hear what you think of their teas when you try them!

Yunnan Sourcing also has a separate US based site, they have a much smaller selection but the shipping is much cheaper. It's a bit confusing, they're both on the same domain but the one ends in .us whereas the full site ends in .com. They're not great at cross-publicizing the two of them. But you might try their US site if you want lower shipping costs.

Alex wrote:
on June 6th, 2018

They haven't arrived yet (although they should any day now), but I'll review them once I've brewed them a few times and feel like I've gotten familiar enough with them.

The problem with Yunnan Sourcing's US site is that it doesn't have most of what I'd want other than puerh: the cheaper Yunnan black teas that I was looking at are currently out of stock, and none of the oolongs I wanted from the normal site are even listed.

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