2009 Immortal Dew Gu Shu Cha (神仙古樹生茶, Shén Xiān Gǔ Shù Shēng Chá, "Immortal Ancient Tree Sheng Tea") - This tea is a single-farm, single-mountain ancient tree Sheng Pu'er tea grown and processed by master Li Shulin of Nannuo mountain. It is a blend of three ancient tree patches on Nannuo Mountain: Douyi, Banpo, and Shitou. These patches are known for their sweet, fragrant, and bitter characters respectively that produce a balanced blend. Limited quantities of ancient tree material mean that producing one large batch of a blend of different patches is more economical than focusing on specific ancient tree patches, although the market has been tending more toward the single-patch teas as consumers grow more sophisticated. This balanced, easy-to-steep tea makes a great introduction to the soft, sweet character and uplifting Qi of high quality ancient tree Sheng Pu'er without being prohibitively expensive. Until we have Pu'er-aging-caves at our disposal, we like to carry both a fresh and an aged version of our Gu Shu Cha in order to demonstrate the changing character of this tea as it ages. 2009 is also the year that our flagship Shu Pu'er, Rain Butter, was produced, inviting a comparison of Sheng and Shu Pu'er and illustrating where these different types of Pu'er converge and diverge as they mature. Now more than a decade old, the astringent edge of fresh Immortal Dew has been mellowed, with a longer and deeper finish that fills the back of the mouth and throat. While the overall profile is approaching the earthy character associated with fermented teas, this dry-stored Sheng Pu'er retains, on the exhale, the sweet floral character of fresh Ancient Tree Sheng.
A lovely tea from start to finish. One of my absolute favorites.