Our shipment of tea has finally arrived from China!

Chinese package addressPieces in package

First of all, I am so excited to to unwrap my very first bing of real pu-erh tea. That’s what it’s called when it’s pressed into a disc shape, it’s called a “bing.”

First pu-erh bing

Bing wrapper

I’ll go into what all the numbers and such on the packaging mean when I get around to reviewing it.

I pressed my face into the back and took a deep whiff of it immediately. It has a smell of wet blond wood, kind of like a wine cork but without the wine smell, of course.

We also picked up two samples of other pu-erhs, I forget what these are. The packages do not appear to be resealable so I chose not to open them yet, though I’d really like to smell them too.

Two sample tea bricks

We also got a gaiwan, which is a lidded cup that you can either brew tea directly in or just use to sift particulate out of brewed tea. The lid helps to hold back any bits you don’t want to drink.

Gleaming gaiwan

It is carved out of chalcedony, and is charmingly imperfect.

And now, the crowning glory, our new Yixing clay teapot…

Ornate teapot box

Carefully wrapped teapot

Our new Yixing beauty

See those speckles? To know that you have a pot made from real Yixing clay, it should have these speckles imbedded in the clay, not just on the outside. Some pots are colored to seem authenically speckled, but it’s just a coating, not a property of the clay itself. Fakers.

You can’t just pluck her out of the box and start brewing though, oh no. In the next day or two I’ll show you how to clean and season a new teapot and tell you all about why we needed a new one for brewing pu-erhs when we already have one. Really neat stuff.

Done geeking out now!