2011 Yunnan Sourcing "Cha Tou Sheng Yun" Ripe Pu-erh Tea Brick
"Cha Tou Sheng Yun" (茶头圣韵 aka Cha Tou Sage Verse) is our Cha Tou (Tea Nugget) ripe pu-erh brick and our second production (our 1st production was in 2009 and is sold out.)
Cha Tou is a kind of tea nugget that forms naturally from the pressures of compression and heat that occurs during the fermentation process. Typically during fermentation process to make ripe pu-erh there is a pile of tea about 1 meter high. It is kept wet to allow the fermentation process and the pile is turned every few days to allow for an even degree of fermentation, moving the tea from the bottom of the pile (where it is hotter and wetter) to the top of the pile where it is cooler and drier. The "cha tou" are the leaves that ball up and get stuck together. The best cha tou are ones that have not been over-fermented and are smaller in size.
We drank more than 10 different "cha tou" before deciding on this one, we think the best of them all! The tea was fermented in 2010 at the Jinggu Tea Factory in Simao. It is creamy and smooth, already having lost some of its post-fermentation funk it's tea liquor is a clear and deep red-wine color. Aging this for just a few months to a few years will bring out more complexity and smoothness. Like all good cha tou ripe teas this tea can be infused more than 20 times!!!
This tea was compressed in a Kunming tea factory using a hydraulic press. A high degree of compression is needed to get these little tea nuggets to stick together. 200 kilos in total were produced.
Net Weight: 250 grams per brick
Fermentation time: August-September 2010
Harvest Area: Jinggu County of Simao Prefecture