Tea Company: Chicago Tea Garden (website)
Vendor Suggested Preparation: Water Temperature: 212 deg F, 1st steep 30 sec, 2nd steep 30 sec, 3rd steep 45 sec, 4th steep 1 min
When the average American first learns of tea, then tend to learn about black tea (often Lipton-eqsue types of black tea) or herbals. If they’re lucky enough to start to explore the genre of tea, then the worlds of greens, whites and oolongs come into focus, but the pu-erhs often remain uncharted territory. Of all types of tea, pu-erhs seem the most mis-understood and mysterious teas out there. I often see people new to tea mention that they are *scared* of them. And, that can be understandable; some of the adjectives often associated with pu-erhs are big, strong, bold words like “leathery,” “earthy,” and in worst case scenarios “fish-tank-y.” I don’t want to drink a fish tank. Ew!
Personally, I’ve only started to stratch the surface of pu-erhs. And even in this small sampling I’ve had some that I’ve spit out, and some that I’ve absolutely adored. So I went into this tea with a very open mind – this one could be anything. It came in cute little mini-cakes smelling vaguely of rose. But it wasn’t as scented as the name suggested – I was expecting more floral On brewing, it steeped at a rich carmely brown – a little lighter than I’d expected. And the flavor was very smooth with a hint of a sweet finish. Not as much of the earthy strong characteristics I’ve come to associate with pu-erhs, but rather a medium-bodied brew. And again, not much floral, either in the scent or the flavor.
This is a rich and soft brew. Don’t come to this tea expecting lots of rose. You won’t find it. But you will find a nice mellow pu-erh. This would be a good springboard pu-erh for those afraid or hesitant to try them.
You can purchase the Rose Scenter directly from the Chicago Tea Garden website.
Written by Gretchen
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