This is a local herb from Yunnan called “Nuo Mi Xiang” or “Semnostachya Menglaensis”. The Chinese name of this herb literally means “sticky glutinous rice fragrance”.
Semnostachya menglaensis Tsui (Acanthaceae) is a rare plant indigenous to Mengla in the tropical rainforest of the Xishuangbanna prefecture in the south of Yunnan province, China. When the leaves are crushed, a characteristic smell of basmati rice or pandan leaves develops. The Semnostachya Menglaensis has tiny leaves that look like mint leaves, with a sweet aroma that resembles sticky rice. People sometimes use it as a medicinal herb thanks to its detoxifying effect. Yet, the most popular application is to scent teas.
Generally, pu erhs (ripe and raw) in a tuo cha shape often carry the sticky rice flavor. Once steeped, the tea emits a sweet aroma identical to that of fresh sticky rice. The liquor is very brothy and resembles genmaicha in color and taste.