I sat down with Art of Tea proprietor and founder, Steve Schwartz for a lesson in re-steeping tea. One of the many advantages of free leaf tea is the magnificence of re-steeping the leaves. The Chinese usually want to re-steep oolong and pu-erh teas as a result of they imagine that solely after a number of steeps, the true flavors and essence of the tea come out. However, you possibly can re-steep most free leaf teas a number of occasions. You might discover that you simply want a tea’s tenth steep way over its first. Re-steeping tea opens the leaves additional, releasing totally different flavors, tones and aromas. Enjoy the finest cup of tea one steep at time and obtain extra of its advantages as the leaves proceed to unfold.
It’s an thrilling journey to witness how the flavors ripen and see how your senses react to every steep. Follow our journey as Steve and I re-steep pu-erh teas divided into two components. First, be a part of us by means of our exploration of re-steeping a pu-erh cake. Stay tuned for half two, the place we re-steep free leaf pu-erh.
What is Pu-erh?
Pu-erh, (pooh-air) typically referred to as darkish tea, is principally present in Yunnan, China. It’s the most consumed tea all through the nation. According to an article in Natural News, pu-erh has been utilized in Chinese medication for hundreds of years. Traditional makes use of embody the removing of toxins from the physique, weight reduction, enhancing eyesight, decreasing ldl cholesterol, selling blood circulation and reviving those that have over indulged in alcohol.
Pu-erh tea undergoes a novel fermentation course of the place microbes feed on its leaves, permitting pure mildew and yeast to develop. This getting old course of enhances and produces the earthy flavors and moss-like traits of pu-erh. The darkened and dried leaves and buds of the Camellia Sinensis plant are then historically pressed right into a cake or served as free leaf. Similar to crimson wine, the older the tea, the higher tasting and better high quality the tea turns into. Because of its fermentation course of, pu-erh tastes and smells like a moist forest flooring. It is engulfed with earthy tones, damp wooden and filth tastes and aromas. More males over girls are likely to gravitate in the direction of this tea. The scent alone typically hinders me from taking my first sip. But after a lot hesitation, I’ve tasted a quantity of pu-erh teas, and I can pretty say that I’m not a fan. Find out if re-steeping it swayed my palate.
In this enterprise, Steve and I made a decision to re-steep Art of Tea’s Pu-erh Tuo Cha. Tuo cha actually means pressed tea. In early China, tea was compacted right into a pressed cake for straightforward transport throughout lengthy buying and selling voyages. Art of Tea’s Tuo Cha is pressed right into a tiny bowl form good for a single serving, which fits a great distance with re-steeping. As the scorching water hits the pressed leaves, they gently unravel into free entities emitting their taste.
First, we flushed the Pu-erh Tuo Cha for 30 seconds. We dropped the single bowl-shaped cake into our Gaiwan and poured boiling water over it. After 30 seconds, we threw out the water as if to wash and rinse the pu-erh.
*Tip: Flushing tea is a vital step in re-steeping as a result of it removes extra and exterior sediment naturally discovered on tea, particularly pu-erh. A fast flush of 5-10 seconds awakens the tea leaves by opening and increasing cells inside the leaves.
|Steep||Water Temperature||Steep Time||Flavor Profile|
|First||208 levels||45 seconds||Tree bark with honey & molasses, very earthy|
|Second||208 levels||1 minute||Dry, astringent, thick, daring tannins|
|Third||208 levels||1 minute||Sweet however astringent|
|Fourth||208 levels||1 minute||Thick, brothy and soupy, camphor-like, astringent, citrus- smelling|
|Fifth||208 levels||1 minute||Sweet, grainy end|
|Sixth||208 levels||1 minute||Sweet-smelling, very mild, beer-like aroma, barley/wheat-tasting, earthy, oatmeal taste, watery|
|Seventh||208 levels||three minutes||Peppery, astringent, thick, however watery as you sip increasingly more|
Keep in thoughts that each expertise is totally different, however that is simply half of the thriller of every sip of tea. As anticipated, this pu-erh initially tasted very earthy and astringent. However, after 5 steeps, the taste lastly opened as much as sweeter and lighter tones. The sixth steep shocked my taste buds utterly. Although the sweetness began peaking in on the fifth steep, I didn’t count on the oatmeal and barley flavors to permeate. By the closing steep, I used to be truly having fun with my cup of pu-erh! Join us subsequent time as Steve and I proceed our journey in re-steeping pu-erh.