brewing mao cha


One of the intentionally aged teas, Pu-Erh has a loyal following.

Re: brewing mao cha

Postby MarshalN » Jan 17th, '12, 03:06

kasey wrote:That may explain why this tuocha has a predominantly smoky flavor. Is this likely to change over time? But my essential point is that one shouldn't try to brew a compressed chunk of tea.


Unlikely. Basically, you should avoid mini tuocha - they're terrible. You'll find higher quality compressed teas to be much better.
User avatar
MarshalN
 
Posts: 2099
Joined: Mar 15th, '

Re: brewing mao cha

Postby G-off-re » Jan 17th, '12, 19:33

kasey wrote:I have some mini sheng tuochas from Upton Tea Co. that are my first venture at this. I brewed one in a guiwan at 185 degrees for starters after rinsing for 10 seconds and followed the gong-fu recommendations for length of brewing time. Sometimes mild, sometimes bitter, but never satisfying. I am admittedly lacking in the requisite expertise, but my feeling is that gong-fu is a style that must adapt itself to a compressed chunk of tea that simply resists being brewed. Last night I carefully crushed up another of these tuochas in a plastic bag with a hammer and brewed it at 170 degrees for 90 seconds. Voila! A bit of powder, but all the flavor you could want, consistent through four infusions. When I originally asked about brewing maocha it was because it appears to be loose leaf, which would probably age faster than a cake besides being easier to establish an optimum and repeatable brewing time and temperature. I have since bought a few cakes and a couple of 2011 sheng bricks which I'm thinking of breaking up before storing.


Smashing tea with a hammer is going to give you bad results. A toucha pick works much better.
G-off-re
 
Posts: 95
Joined: Jun 17th, '

Re: brewing mao cha

Postby Catfur » Jan 17th, '12, 21:19

Not going to comment on mini tuos, but if I can't easily break up a cake (I use a chama knife), I don't. Water will do the trick. Just brew normally (after breaking off an appropriate sized chunk), and by the first or second brew it will open up naturally.
User avatar
Catfur
 
Posts: 128
Joined: Jun 19th, '
Location: Carlsbad, NM

Re: brewing mao cha

Postby kasey » Feb 3rd, '12, 02:57

Thanks for the feedback. I would hesitate to break up a mini tuocha with a pick which is why I used a hammer with the tuocha in a baggie. Now I have about a kilo of assorted pu I got from puerhshop.com. I also bought a knife and a pick. I broke up a 250 gram brick and a 100 gram tuocha and I found the pick to be easier to use than the knife. Now the issue I want to bring up (maybe I should start a new thread) is the coarseness of pu regarding brewing. It's thick and hard, so it's difficult to brew as is. I have some store bought canned Foojoy "tribute puerh tea" that is the kind of small, usual-looking twisted leaf and it brews optimum at 175 degrees for 90 seconds every infusion. So I'm thinking of buying a mortar and pestle and crushing what I have into something that is more submissive. Or maybe even using a pepper mill or a coffee grinder. Has anyone tried that? Yeah, I'm crazy...
kasey
 
Posts: 78
Joined: Sep 5th, '0
Location: Suburban Washington D.C.

Re: brewing mao cha

Postby debunix » Feb 3rd, '12, 03:05

Crushing the leaf is going to bring out any bitterness present in it. Breaking some of the leaves is inevitable when dealing with compressed teas, but hardly desirable.
User avatar
debunix
 
Posts: 4978
Joined: Jan 10th, '
Location: Los Angeles, CA

Re: brewing mao cha

Postby teaisme » Feb 8th, '12, 18:27

kasey wrote: Now I have about a kilo of assorted pu


kasey wrote: So I'm thinking of buying a mortar and pestle and crushing what I have into something that is more submissive.

Easy there mama tiger slow down :o
Crushing a young tea seems strange to me, are you trying to get more bitterness and less smoothness? Drinking puerh like that would give me jitters and make me feel uneasy and totally out of balance. Past couple of months I have been experimenting with breaking cakes/bricks into moacha and brewing them. Results have been far less spectacular then when I use chunks. I have reverted back to chunks for young sheng. We are moving in the opposite direction :!:

Check out that link to clouds blog, july 2008 sections on proportion if you have the time. That applies to older sheng. But the reasonings you can gleam apply to everything.
For younger plantation sheng (after 2003ish)I like to go all chunk, but not big chunks. Smaller chunks, thinner and less dense esp if it is something pressed really tight like a xiaguan toucha. First infusion is longer, second much shorter, then experiment/adjust increasing the brew times from there. By end of third infusion almost everything should be opened out if you are using water just off boil. Also I don't use as much tea when I brew younger sheng. Stuff is usually pretty strong!

Houde blog has a little article on steaming toucha etc so you don't have to hammer if you don't want to.
Hope you find your optimal way :mrgreen:
User avatar
teaisme
 
Posts: 1390
Joined: May 27th, '

Re: brewing mao cha

Postby kasey » May 7th, '12, 16:02

I very recently bought 5 varieties of maocha from Norbu Tea Co. and 2 from Silk Road Teas. So far I've only tried one and it's a long leaf similar to Yunnan green. Very bulky. I opened another from Silk Road Teas (Deep Green River - 2007) and it's a dramatically different leaf style, more like a Chun Mee. Absolutely scrumptious bouquet and obviously will be very consistent in brewing for optimum flavor which is the reason why I lean toward maocha. I'm looking forward to tasting it once I've determined the optimum brewing time and temperature on what I'm currently sampling. I'll keep you posted.
kasey
 
Posts: 78
Joined: Sep 5th, '0
Location: Suburban Washington D.C.

Re: brewing mao cha

Postby kasey » May 7th, '12, 16:23

Thanks for your input Teaisme, I was actually just trying to get something I was more used to in intensity out of that mini tuo. But you put it very well and I get your point. You don't want to release raw sheng's full intensity all at once like you'd do if it got crushed. So you leave it in chunks and use more. Do you help it along by opening it up with a pick after a brew or two?
And is it really necessary to rinse the tea first?
kasey
 
Posts: 78
Joined: Sep 5th, '0
Location: Suburban Washington D.C.

Re: brewing mao cha

Postby teaisme » May 8th, '12, 14:03

kasey wrote:And is it really necessary to rinse the tea first?

I wouldn't say so, but I personally would for a mini, or puerh in general.

With your mini's you may want to rinse twice to get them to open up and be cleaner. Maybe a 7 sec boiling rinse on first, let it sit for a sec, then rinse again for another 5 secs if its really compressed. Let it sit a sec, then pour in boiling water with force for the first infusion. Subsequent infusions use hot hot hot water.

Hopefully that will get your tou to open up. If not you you can pick at it a little after infusion 2. I think hot hot water is important. I notice you brew some of your pu with about 170degrees. That will make it a lot harder to open up. Be prepared for a bigger hit of caffeine though if your usual is 170 as opposed to around 200.
User avatar
teaisme
 
Posts: 1390
Joined: May 27th, '

Re: brewing mao cha

Postby kasey » Jun 17th, '12, 22:45

In an earlier post I mentioned that I had bought several varieties of maocha, the reason being that I had a strong hunch that these could be brewed just like any whole-leaf green tea. I've found that this is indeed the case, all of the various large leaf Yunnan maocha I bought from Norbu Tea require between 175-180 degrees for 2-3 minutes and yield a consistently scrumptious 2 or 3 brews every time, just what you would expect from a Yunnan green.

As for those smoky tasting mini tuos, I guess I'll use them for deodorizing the kitchen wastebasket.
kasey
 
Posts: 78
Joined: Sep 5th, '0
Location: Suburban Washington D.C.

Re: brewing mao cha

Postby teaisme » Jun 18th, '12, 13:36

kasey wrote: hunch that these could be brewed just like any whole-leaf green tea


me too I've just started doing this with the real young and strong puerhs :o
Though my water is prob a little hotter, and infusions are shorter
User avatar
teaisme
 
Posts: 1390
Joined: May 27th, '

Previous

Instant Messenger

Permissions
You cannot post new topics
You cannot reply to topics
You cannot edit your posts
You cannot delete your posts
You cannot post attachments
Navigation