First off, I think we will see a repeat of the '06-'07-'08 cycle, with a bad sales year in 2012. Puerh prices have been going up as a function of Chinese consumption of various commodities. Therefore, price growth should slow as Chinese growth slows. I do think gushu prices will take a hit, but it's going to be slaughter for most common teas, such as Dayi/Xiaguan/Haiwan. Inflation expectations drive the worth of storage, even if speculators burn X% of their stocks, if people think the market will shrink, then they will do their best to sell. If the economy is shrinking, the ability of people to carry the storage costs will shrink. This factor will hit the Big Boys the most. I can leave my stash of XZH in the corner of the sunroom at near zero cost in utility and zero cash layout. So I think people will always be confident that they can hold onto good gushu. As such, I expect that there will always be investment interest in such products, with the usual cost being an extremely shallow market to sell back into. Only a few people know the top boutique maker brands, relative to Dayi or Changtai.
With this XZH product, it's the one *not* the LBZ or GFZ, so I expect it to be a blend of very high quality. I think it will probably be worth buying, as opposed to, say the YangQingHao '06 @$175. All gushu, and very tasty, probably. Moreover, I think that demand for the top tree leaves will never be weak for leaves at such and such a level of quality, and no matter how weak the market will be in the near term, in the medium-long term, so long as XZH keeps up the market presence, it will have been worth holding. I do expect some price revulsion for the 2011s. The only items I might ever had been tempted by would be the Pasha and maybe the Bama, because they were under $100/400g and I'm confident of good aging prospects. Too much stuff is over $100 such that I expect some significant fraction would be quite not worth it.