May 19, 2017

Bana Tea Company Sweet Clarity Puerh

Image: Cover of Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See (source)

Have you read the Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa See? If you are looking for tea person's perspective on this book, read Nicole Martin's book review. I have. You should, too. Bana Tea Company has prepared a book club tea tasting kit and guide. I'm part of a book club specific to this book. We've only met once and during that session we drank Sweet Clarity Puerh Spring 2016. I did not take any photographs but I think you still should read this tea review.

The dry leaf is oh, so incredibly deeply sweet. I wrote that exactly in my notebook. I used 3 grams and infused it in 195F water. The first steep at 1 minute was sweet and fruity with a lingering tail note of butter and leather with a creamy mouthfeel also experienced on the lips. Smooth.

Infusion number two was 90 seconds long. The liquor was still sweet but the astringent green tea-ness raised its head. The third infusion of 2 minutes was more leather. We walked about food pairings at this point. I offered that this puerh would pair well with an upside down apricot cake (there is such a thing though I have not baked one yet). The puerh had a deep sweetness and apricot jamminess. A sweetness lingered in the back of the throat. We all noted that the tea was feminine, multilayered, complex.

One of the group said the liquor from the fourth infusion (also 2 minutes) smelled like creme brulee. There was also a rocky note; a mineral aspect to the tail note that stuck to my cheeks. The fruity sweetness was still there. This puerh stayed in character but revealed something new in each infusion. We wrapped up our first book club meeting after this infusion but I went on to drink three more cups of this tea. Keep reading.

The fifth infusion was soft and easy to drink. I drank it all before noticing that I hadn't taken any detailed notes. Infusion six smelled "so jammy!" The liquor had a mineral fragrance. The liquor tasted mostly sweet. My lower gums and cheeks were slightly numb during this infusion, pleasantly so. The seventh and final infusion yielded a straw yellow liquor that again was mostly sweet with a faint note of fruit. The last three infusions were made using 200F water. Steep times were 2 minutes, 3 minutes, and 5 minutes, respectively.

I am so thrilled that I have more of Bana's Sweet Clarity!

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