Monday, January 19, 2015

Mandala Tea Wild Monk Raw Puerh 2014

Country of Origin: China
Leaf Appearance: varied shades of green, tightly compressed
Ingredients: puerh tea
Steep time: 30 seconds
Water Temperature: 212 degrees
Preparation Method: porcelain gaiwan
Liquor: deep gold

Some of you might remember how wild I was about +Mandala Tea's Wild Monk last year. The newest rendition of this tea was less smoky but was most definitely just as enjoyable. As soon as I lifted the lid of my gaiwan, I thought "Ah, now that's what tea should smell like.". There were complex notes of camphor, honey and stone fruit. Full bodied and woodsy with a thinner mouth-feel, I just couldn't get enough of it. The bright astringency was refreshing but never bordered into unpleasant bitterness. After more than a few rounds I was left with a heady, warm tea drunk feeling. I stopped at around ten infusions but these leaves definitely had more to give. This is one of those rare teas where I really wish that I could buy a whole tong. But then I'd probably hoard it and never get to enjoy it as much. If you're looking to get into puerh without breaking your budget, I cannot recommend this tea enough. Either year is fantastic and for under $30, you get enough tea to play around with and explore.

Wild Monk Raw Puerh 2014 sample provided by Mandala Tea.