2023 Yiwu Gua Feng Zhai Mao Cha
Among the six tea mountains of Yunnan is the famed Yiwu mountain, home to many tea-producing villages. Among them is Gua Feng Zhai, at 1200 meters above sea level, renowned for its richly flavored tea with a wild camelia taste and lingering sweetness.
This mao cha, puerh tea not (yet) compressed into cakes, is made from the leaves of older tea trees of between 150 and 300 years of age. Harvested iin nid-March, the tea goes through a brief kill-green stage to arrest oxidation, and then is dried in the sun, at which point the tea begins to naturally ferment. As this is sheng (raw) puerh tea, the fermentation is not accelerated by further processing.
The result is a tea which contains within it the essence of springtime. Bold floral and vegetal notes (with no astringency) in early steeps give way to a rich sweetness and lingering hui gan in later steeps. It has great potential for deepening its flavor with age, however it is very drinkable now, before the springtimey vegetal notes dissipate. A very nice tea!