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2006 Kunming Dry Storage CNNP 7581 55th Anniversary Edition Ripe Pu Erh Brick (50g)

2006 Kunming Dry Storage CNNP 7581 55th Anniversary Edition Ripe Pu Erh Brick (50g)

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This is a special edition 7581 brick from 2006, apparently pressed with specially selected older material from 1998! These bricks were exported to Taiwan, but some stayed behind in Kunming and were stored very well for the last twelve years. Kunming storage varies from excellent to cryostasis (virtually no change over a decade). This is a great example of good Kunming storage for one of these bricks. I am a huge fan of the 7581 recipe! While I have consumed 7581 ripe for years, I only discovered the actual bricks in Taiwan several years ago. In Hong Kong, pu erh is often sold loose and ready to drink versus in cakes, bricks and tuos, which are more for collectors and connoisseurs!

The numbers 7581 indicate this recipe was developed around 1975, which is right around the time the first shu production started. The '8' indicates the majority of leaf in the blend is grade 8, which means the brick is composed of larger leaves from further down on the tea plant, and the 1 indicates the tea was produced by CNNP, or the Chinese government's agricultural products arm (which is still around, and known as COFCO today). These bricks were originally made specifically for the Hong Kong pu erh market, as with all early shu pu erh! The quality of the leaf makes me want to buy these in bulk to age!

In the cup, this tea has nice date and jujube notes, with a little underlying camphor. I felt the liquor wasn't as smooth as it would have been in my storage, but this tea was still a pleasure to drink after 12 years of good Kunming dry storage (not all Kunming storage is good storage, but this is nicely aged)! The 'bite' this tea still has wasn't entirely unwelcome.

I also noticed some preserved Chinese plum/raisin action in infusion four, and infusions four and five gave me a sense of calm. I believe this tea would have had greater calming energy earlier on in more tropical storage in Hong Kong or Guangdong, but I do enjoy the contrast here and this tea makes for very good comparison with 7581s from around the same period that were stored elsewhere! I will be putting up 2005 CNNP 7581s from my own dry storage very shortly!

Brewing suggestion: Full boil, with water of low hardness (15-35 mg/L, with 1-3mg/L of magnesium). Rinse twice, and start with 10-15 second infusions for the first two or three infusions, then add 10-15 seconds to each successive infusion. If the liquor is too weak, add more time. 

Please note: Volume discounts may be available on this tea. Please contact me for more details!

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