This style of tea is storied, with many interesting nicknames. We call it Royal Tribute because it was a tea that was sent from the southern reaches of Yunnan to the Emperor of China as an offering. The teasmiths that crafted the Pu-erh called it “daughter’s tea”, as they typically had the daughters of the local villagers picking the tea buds. It is said that the harvesters were paid in finished tea instead of money, which in turn sold very quickly at the markets.
This style of Pu-erh is only made from leaves harvested in February, which is unusually early by most tea production standards which harvest tea leaves around late March at the earliest. The reason for this is because the early harvest yields only tea buds and no fully matured leaves. The resulting brew is tippy, yet smooth in the after-taste. Notes include camphor in the nose, with a taper that is woodsy and sweet. All in all, a very refined tea that demands attention, we recommend drinking this without an accompanying meal.
Water temperature will produce a wide spectrum of flavors. Higher temperatures closer to 100°c will produce more medicinal notes, while lower temperatures down to 92°c will draw out the sweet flavors. Whichever temperature you decide to use, make sure not to brew for longer than thirty seconds maximum! Even at twenty seconds, this tea will produce a very deep amber liquor with packed with plenty of flavor. Beyond the fourth cup, it is fine to steep for a minute or longer.