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Lao Man E 2014 Spring

Our 2014 Lao Man E is a 50/50 mix of bitter & sweet trees. The aroma left in the cup is floral with that fruity sweetness of Starburst candy, plums and that airy freshness of watermelon rind. The wet leaves smell of forest floor and herbs. The tea is delicious, thick and oily, with a subtle sweet note at its core, wrapped in layers of bitterness. The sweetness crescendos over the course of a few minutes, emerging from the bitter aftertaste to reveal a blissful huigan with slight cooling effect.

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Steeping Instructions:
We recommend 7g of tea leaves in a 100ml brewing vessel. Add boiling hot water. This tea can re-infused at least 10 times.

Lao Man E 2014 Spring

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Buy together with our 2013 Spring Lao Man E or 2011 Summer Lao Man E for a vertical tasting. If you're wondering what the graffiti on the wrapper says, it's a dedication to our baby daughter, Miranda Jamie, born June 2014, in the year of the horse. Check out our blog for more on the Tea Urchin family!

Customer Reviews

Clean bitterness followed by nice sweetness

Review by Matu (from Steepster)
Sample from my Secret Santea this year – and very thankful for it :)

I’ve come to expect a certain “cleanliness” from Tea Urchin sheng – I haven’t had a whole ton of their teas, but just about all of them have had that clean feeling going for them. I don’t know if that’s really the right word, but that’s how my brain/taster/body process it. It manifests itself in both taste and body feeling. No off flavors strange sourness that can be common in puerh and no crummy feelings or roughness in the gut. It’s sort of become what I associate TU’s teas with – not that all others seem grubby in comparison, just that these are particularly…pristine?

This one is no different – it has a pretty heavy bitterness which I fully expected going into a Lao Man E tea. That kind of clean bitterness though – not really astringent and didn’t make my mouth feel funny or anything. That bitterness is followed by a nice sweetness, though the bitterness is what leaves the lasting impression in my mouth. Great thickness to the liquid of this tea. I didn’t really pick up on a lot of qi in this session.

Definitely one I would like to order at some point. I really ought to try to pick up more TU this year. Or maybe I should focus on drinking some of the tea I already have. What a crazy idea. (Posted on 1/2/19)

Totally gorgeous.

Review by moot (from Steepster)
I think the bitter puerhs were my first puerh love – dig me some of that Bulang – but this is the next level shit. It’s a glorious bitter, somewhere between a quinine bitter and a burnt-rubber bitter (but good!) – just hanging out and glowing while all this other oceanic stuff – warmth, passing dairy flavors, all kinds of fruity junk – meld and change and pass beneath it. And that bitter flavor just hangs out up there, glowing a little, and just being so insanely beautiful. (Posted on 9/11/16)

pair it with some solo piano jazz

Review by paxl13 (from Steepster)
My god,

First thanks to the awesome Phi for giving me a sample of this one.

Here is the best example I can come up with this tea, this is the bastard child between a very sweet yiwu AND a menghai production like the New Amerikah 2. It’s not bitter per my standard but I do not find the NA2 to be too too bitter which is to say that I love my teas VERY punchy.

The energy that goes out of this tea is awesome, deep relaxed calm that help me to focus. I paired this tea with some solo piano jazz and it was perfect!

I will definitvely consider a cake of it at some point!

Flavors: Bitter, Sweet (Posted on 8/3/15)

attracted to the weirdness

Review by bellmont (from Steepster)
Minerals and a lasting sweetness from an amber liquior which hangs out in the back of my throat in the first couple of steeps. As my session progressed I noticed a non-mouth drying bitterness. Thinking back on that bitter feeling…I think it’s best described as leaning more towards the green/unripe apple tart side of the spectrum (versus persimmon dryness or a lemon’s tartness). The website mentioned a sweetness like Starburst, I had to really stretch my palate to taste that, Starbursts have an artificiality to their fruit flavor, something that really attacks the mouth…no artificial or mouth attacking sweetness was found during my session. The sweetness was more pleasant and natural again akin to eating an apple.

I got a sample of this cake partly because the adjectives describing its taste were so interesting: “watermelon rind” “Starburst” …I even found a blogger who mentioned it being “mucous” “salmon-like” –he found this bad, again I was attracted to the weirdness. After my session I could see why someone would say ’mucous’ like…the tea really hangs around the mouth (and throat) and the liquor is quite thick right off the bat. Looking into my gaiwan I noticed the leaves kinda slowly floating… as if all time and space within the walls of my gaiwan was warping (just so I could have a perfect cup of tea).

Taking a break mid-way through my session, I noticed a warmness radiating around my center and arms…as if just these areas of my body were in a steam sauna. A fair amount of chi here (different from the caffeinated jitteriness I have experienced with past sheng).

Data bits: Acquired 30g sample for $13.50 USD, March, 2015. Brewing parameters: 6g leaf, 100ml gaiwan, 1 rinse, steeps 1-5 5-10 seconds each, steeps 6-8 30 seconds to 1:30 seconds.

Before mentioned blogger and their requisite post:

I really like this tea. Might pick up a cake.

Flavors: Apple, Tart, Thick (Posted on 8/3/15)

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