Long ago the wise tea master Lao Cha was on a pilgrimage through the mountainous ranges of Guanxi province, China, when he stumbled upon a tired farmer:
— Sensei, do you have something for me that is comforting like a thick rice porridge, yet sweet and robust like coffee that will help me tackle all this work.
— Of course, young one! Let me share with you a woven basket of Liu Bao.
Liu Bao is considered to be the sister of Pu-erh tea. It is originally from Guangxi province in China and is aged using large baskets. This tea dates all the way back to the 1500s when it was one of the highest prized teas in China. The production of Liu Bao involves wet piling, the same method that was later on adapted to create Ripe Pu-erh.
Unlike Pu-erh tea which is post-fermented, Liu Bao Hei Cha is only semi-fermented which influences its unique nutty and earthy taste that is like no other. If you are into the aged qualities of a nice Ripe Pu-erh we recommend trying a Liu Bao!
According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, Liu Bao has both heating and cooling properties (yin and yang). A common preparation method is bringing the tea leaves up to a boil in a pot, then letting them steep while cooling. The hot temperature doesn’t harm the tea or extract any bitterness, instead, this method only enhances the tea’s nutritional value. Liu Bao is a very easy tea to brew and can be both cooked and steeped as usual.
212℉ / 100℃
6g per 500ml 3-5min
6g per 110ml 10sec + 5sec for each subsequent infusion