wyardley wrote:needaTEAcher wrote:"I agree with Wyardly that..." Just my opinion, not solid fact, nor is it anyone's reality except my own (and apparently Wyardly!), though I bet there are more than a few people out there with a similar view!
Well, I do actually have a book which says this explicitly. It's in Chinese only, but the marking of the percentage sheng / shu material in various teas (dating back to the 40s or so), is pretty clear.
So, I'm not saying that I think it's for sure so, but it's not a random opinion either. It's based on one author's opinion, which seems to jibe with things I've heard from folks who have read other books about old pu'er.
And ultimately, I agree. But then again, I agree within the context of the traditionally defined structure of what makes puerh "good", i.e. smoothness`(lack of bitter), depth and complexity of flavor (breadth of the spectrum), feeling generated in the body, strength and duration of aftertaste, etc. Since I agree with all of these, personally, then I agree with the conclusion that shou can't go as far as sheng, as set by the above parameters.
That said, if someone rolls into my tea circle or onto teachat and says, "Hey, I think shou tastes better, and I prefer to drink young shou over a 50+ top shelf sheng," then I will be happy that they found what brings them joy. I won't tell them they are wrong, though I might explain what is considered the industry standard. And I would drink lots of shou with them!
Oh, and the percentage shou vs sheng thing sounds rad. I wonder if my teachers considered it shou if it contained a certain percentage of shou, or something like that. If you find any book that mention it in English, let us all know!