Tai Lian Fang Zhuan (Tai Lian Brick)

Shu Puer Brick 500g 2004

Large mature leaves infuse to a deep red brew with a very clean sweet finish. One of the oldest puers in our collection, naturally aged in good storage conditions to develop a deep sweet flavor. Older puers are considered more medicinally potent and beneficial in Chinese herbalism.


Out of stock

Tea Origin
Lin Cang area and Xishuangbanna City, Yunnan Province, China

Tea Bush
Yunnan Large Leaf Tea Tree (Yunnan Da Ye Zhong)

Tea Master
Wang Xi Qun

Harvest Time

Picking Standard
Four leaves

Made from the same leaf material as our popular Tai Lian 2004 Shu Puer 250-gram brick, this larger Tai Lian brick weighs 500 grams, or half a kilo. This tea is highly favored by the ethnic minorities of Tibet and Mongolia, who trade for large 1-kilogram bricks that can be stored long-term.

Prior to 2005, the Cha Ma Si puer tea factory was known by the name “Tai Lian.” In those days, roads in Yunnan weren’t nearly as good, it was much harder to get tea from the mountainous producing regions, puer tea was only just beginning its ascent into wild popularity and puer mao cha still sold for just a dollar per half-kilogram.

This shu puer brick was pressed at the tail end of this era, using leaves from Xi Shuang Ban Na and Lin Cang, plucked from bushes of sixty years or older. Using excellent standards for fermentation for its time, its leaves spent no less than 60 days in processing with careful attention paid to their moisture content and temperature. Throughout the process, a little bit of moisture was added as the leaves were turned. This “wet” process was common at the time. After their fermentation period, the leaves from this batch were sorted into the standard grades of leaf size. This Tai Lian black puer brick’s leaves fall into the larger grades of eight and above.

These bricks were purposely stored to mellow their flavor and now, after having been stored for so long, have shed all of the earthy and oceanic flavors that one would associate with wet processed shu puer, leaving a very sweet and smooth brew. The color of its liquor has clarified with age as well, leaving a clear, bright red infusion. Although this tea was produced with the artificial fermentation of the cooking process, it is evident that natural fermentation has continued in the bricks, yielding a tea that is already quite different from young shu puer. Overall this brick is an excellent representation of how good fermentation techniques combines with careful aging to produce even better tea.

Note that the fragrance of this tea is especially strong when it is leaves are slowly “cooked” in water at a simmer, producing notes of wild flower and sweet preserved fruit. Still, this tea brews excellently with conventional brewing methods, but we do suggest trying it this way. You will be surprised with how much sweetness comes out.

No chemical fertilizer, pesticide, or herbicide was used in the production of this tea. Click here to read more about our promise to fair trade and the environment.


Tai Lian Fang Zhuan (Tai Lian Brick) 2004 brewing guidelines

Weight per piece: 500 grams
How to store: Store in a dark, well ventilated area with less than 70% humidity. Less than 25 degrees C or 77 degrees F. Store in the paper or fabric, not plastic. Keep away from odors and fragrances.

How to infuse: Any cup, pot, or gaiwan made of porcelain, glass, yixing clay, iron, or other material will work.
Brewing Guidelines: 1st infusion — Loosen and gently break off about 5 grams of tea from the brick for approx. 12 ounces water. Use boiling water (212 degrees F) and infuse for 2 minutes. 2nd infusion — Boiling water, infuse for 2 minutes 3rd infusion — Boiling water, infuse for 3-5 minutes 4th to 7th (or more) infusions — Boiling water, infuse for 5 minutes Infusions: 7 or more times

Learn more about Puer Tea.