A wild and perfectly rustic sheng that exemplifies the hazelnut and tingling spice that makes Banzhang tea so great. . . .
Immediately creamy with a tingling sweetness like the finest spring Gyokuro. Assertive notes of toasted walnut and hazelnut linger in the throat. As this continues steeping, cinnamon, ginger and cardamom spice with muscovado brown sugar play across the palate. In later steepings, The intriguing muscovado sweetness carries through even as the intense tingling texture subsides. The spice of early steepings slowly moves towards baked apple. Very late in steeping, the texture of licorice root comes through across the tongue accompanied by notes of malt and barley.
(1000g Option is the entire hand-pressed ball of tea wrapped in a beautiful canvas drawstring bag)
NOTES: This pu’er is a unique example of a brick pressed by a small farmer’s cooperative. Their family has a plot of land on Banzhang mountain, which is considered to be the absolute top in terms of pu’er. They eventually got sick of selling the pu’er leaves they picked with care to the big factories for pressing because they felt that the pu’er was treated like too much of a commodity by the bigger companies. They took a huge risk and started their own pressing of bricks. They have yet to catch on in China, because so much value is placed in brand name and certificates of authentication. Because of this, their product is still affordable. Normally 100% Banzhang leaf bricks are thousands and thousands of dollars, and often copied. We are able to bring their tea to America and hopefully find them an audience that appreciates their quiet art.
Date of Picking:Picked in 2001, pressed in 2003
Location of Picking:Old Banzhang Village, nestled in the mountains of Xishuangbanna, Yunnan
What Was Picked:No formal workshop was engaged to do the pressing on this wild-gathered Banzhang mountain leaf. The farmers pressed their own edition of one kilo balls
Quantity Acquired:Eight balls, one kilo each
Sourcing Agent(s):Wang Yanxin met the farmers of Banzhang on a sourcing trip to Xishuangbanna and has been able to secure the majority of the pressing for Verdant Tea.
Brewing Farmer’s Cooperative ’03 Sheng
Use 1tsp of tea per 8oz or water. Rinse leaves twice with 208 degree water. Steep for 2 minutes with 208 degree water. Enjoy at least 5 infusions. Note: Farmer’s Co-op is a formidable tea and needs to be steeped with care to avoid an overwhelming brew. Use filtered water if possible and give the leaves plenty of room to open.
Gongfu Style Brewing (Recommended)
Use 2-3g of tea for a 4-5oz gaiwan or yixing clay teapot. Pour boiling water into pot and immediately pour out into pitcher. Repeat this rinse a second time if you prefer a more tempered first steeping. Pour this rinse over the pot and cups used. Steep for 2-4 seconds each infusion, and enjoy at least 18 infusions. Increase steep time to taste and feel free to use more leaf after experimenting.