In order to transport Pu Erh by mule caravan across the long and difficult Ancient Tea Horse Road, these teas were compressed into bricks, cakes and tuo cha shapes. Tea is brewed from broken chunks of these bricks and produces a rich, complex, and smooth infusion across many cups using the same leaf.
Pu Erh is a form of aged, fermented tea. This variety, called shou or ripe pu erh, has undergone an accelerated step of fermentation known as piling before aging. Brews very smooth and earthy, missing all but a hint of astringency. Around 3 years old.