Aging Puerh.


One of the intentionally aged teas, Pu-Erh has a loyal following.

Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby Tead Off » Jun 29th, '14, 00:44

kyarazen wrote:
Exempt wrote:That's not true, any fairly large swings in temperature or pressure can cause condensation unless the water content in the air is very very very low.


he's asking about south east asia. large temperature swing or pressure doesnt happen here.

even when i resided in the states, or in europe, large swings was not something common.

That would depend on where you were. Large swings are very common in the western part of the U.S. In the deserts, you can have swings of 40-50 degrees at certain times of the year. Micro-climates abound.
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby MarshalN » Jun 29th, '14, 01:30

kyarazen wrote:
MarshalN wrote:You have to remember that most places are not like Malaysia, and the storage conditions in drier, cooler places are not going to be the same. Slowing down aging via wrapping maybe a good idea in Malaysia, but my friends in Hong Kong, some of whose livelihood depends on them storing their tea well because they sell tea for a living, don't wrap their teas until they reach about 30 years old. Experiments have been run and optimal storage has been discovered a long time ago - it's not news. They've been in the business for three generations. Storing tea in places with real winters will mean even slower aging to start off with, which means that methods to make it even slower, like wrapping, is probably not going to be suitable. If someone in Chicago read this and went ahead and wrapped all his tea in shrink wrap, 30 years later he'll still have "grape juice", as shah put it. In Malaysia it might've turned into wine, but in other places it'll not be so good.

So I think a very important thing to remember is all the "shrink wrap" advocates here are talking of storage comparisons with hot and humid places like Malaysia and Singapore. YMMV if you're in a colder and drier climate.


i'm definitely not forcing people to think that sealed storage is the mainstream way to go, but to have it recognized as a possible alternative than the current condescending views to it.

actually grape juice is made into wine by controlling the oxidation, if you make it anaerobic, the juice becomes wine. if its aerobic, the juice becomes vinegar. controlled oxidation is the key

sealing is a way of controlling oxidation. many teas fear exposure, if you leave your dragonwell, spring gaoshan oolong etc exposed over time, it wont do any good to the tea. once it goes stale, your only option is to keep it for long enough, in an environment good enough for it to develop the "aged" taste (thats if the material is right, dragon well is too poorly lignified to be able to aged that way).

whilst some would argue that pu-erh tea is compressed to save space, and that it is used as a currency, make it easy to transport, the tea bricks/cakes they made in ancient days when tea was currency, is probably not the type of pu-erh we have today.

what i see pu-erh tea's compression, is an attempt to control the oxidation over time. if maximum exposure, free exposure, airy, constant high humidity is the key to aged pu-erh's good taste, then why not loosen out all the cakes in storage into loose leaf to have maximum contact and benefit from this? in reality if you have loose leaf, the tea advances faster than the cake form. in 2003, i bought a menghai gushu cake, due to poor compression, it was already falling apart at the sides from the start. i removed the loose leaves (about half the cake worth) and put them into a canister, sealed, and the remaining compacted parts, went into a ziploc. in a recent tasting, the loose leafs advanced way faster than the compressed parts. i had given some of the loose leaves as samples to other tea chatters as an example of what could come out from such a storage method.

once compressed into a cake, the only way bulk of the leaf in the middle of the cake or brick to get exposure to oxygen, humidity, is through the surface leaves of the brick or cake. it becomes a "gradient". if you do a direct cross section of a tiebing i.e. XG8663, or if you brew the middle of the tiebing and the surface, the color is different, the wet leaf is different color too.. but all same cake. due to over-compression, it becomes "anaerobic" in the middle, and less affected by humidity.

apart from the gradient, the other issue that is critical is water/moisture content. i've done water content measurements on cakes that are newly produced to that of cakes that taste good, cakes that taste bad. so if you seal a cake, you had better know the water content of it before you do so, if not it will be overly slow, or eventually mouldy.

a dry, low compression cake was aired for a month, and when the surface and inner leaves are measured, there was almost the same water content, difference of only about 1%. but for a more heavily compressed cake, the difference between surface and core is larger, at several percent.

do not get mistaken that i'm obsessing over water here, just that i use it as an indicator of how much "air penetration" is going on into the cake, since the air brings moisture in, it would bring oxygen in too. i'm not equipped to do oxygen/gaseous studies at the moment, but if a way can be devised, it would be more revealing.


None of what you said changes what I said though - the grape juice thing is just an analogy and is not supposed to be a 1 to 1 comparison. All analogies will fall apart if you pry too hard. The point is - what you're advocating might work for where you are, but in other places with lower humidity and lower temperatures, sealing is probably going to result in teas that don't age, instead of slow age.

Just like how my friends in Beijing try very hard to put their tea in an environment with added water to speed things up - for example by sticking them in plastic bins with literally bags of water in them (albeit small amounts), because it's so dry and cold there. If he advocates that as a legitimate way to age tea everywhere, you'd tell him it won't work where you are because what you are trying to do is pretty much the opposite. So what I'm saying is what you're advocating isn't going to work in a lot of places. I don't think that's so far-fetched. It might be very useful when you folks advocate the sealing method to put a big caveat in front saying that this is from your experience in SE Asia - most of us don't live in climates like SE Asia. Ipoh, for example, has year-round temperatures that are basically the same. Compared to that Hong Kong is a desert in the winter. What you guys do out there is your business, but I have a problem with it when it starts being touted as some universal truth (the way Hojo certainly does).
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby shah82 » Jun 29th, '14, 01:34

Even then, Malaysian dry stored tea I've had are just not very wet, though I've never had unattended tea. Taiwan dry stored is much more humid tasting.
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby puyuan » Jun 29th, '14, 02:08

MarshalN wrote:
kyarazen wrote:
MarshalN wrote:You have to remember that most places are not like Malaysia, and the storage conditions in drier, cooler places are not going to be the same. Slowing down aging via wrapping maybe a good idea in Malaysia, but my friends in Hong Kong, some of whose livelihood depends on them storing their tea well because they sell tea for a living, don't wrap their teas until they reach about 30 years old. Experiments have been run and optimal storage has been discovered a long time ago - it's not news. They've been in the business for three generations. Storing tea in places with real winters will mean even slower aging to start off with, which means that methods to make it even slower, like wrapping, is probably not going to be suitable. If someone in Chicago read this and went ahead and wrapped all his tea in shrink wrap, 30 years later he'll still have "grape juice", as shah put it. In Malaysia it might've turned into wine, but in other places it'll not be so good.

So I think a very important thing to remember is all the "shrink wrap" advocates here are talking of storage comparisons with hot and humid places like Malaysia and Singapore. YMMV if you're in a colder and drier climate.


i'm definitely not forcing people to think that sealed storage is the mainstream way to go, but to have it recognized as a possible alternative than the current condescending views to it.

actually grape juice is made into wine by controlling the oxidation, if you make it anaerobic, the juice becomes wine. if its aerobic, the juice becomes vinegar. controlled oxidation is the key

sealing is a way of controlling oxidation. many teas fear exposure, if you leave your dragonwell, spring gaoshan oolong etc exposed over time, it wont do any good to the tea. once it goes stale, your only option is to keep it for long enough, in an environment good enough for it to develop the "aged" taste (thats if the material is right, dragon well is too poorly lignified to be able to aged that way).

whilst some would argue that pu-erh tea is compressed to save space, and that it is used as a currency, make it easy to transport, the tea bricks/cakes they made in ancient days when tea was currency, is probably not the type of pu-erh we have today.

what i see pu-erh tea's compression, is an attempt to control the oxidation over time. if maximum exposure, free exposure, airy, constant high humidity is the key to aged pu-erh's good taste, then why not loosen out all the cakes in storage into loose leaf to have maximum contact and benefit from this? in reality if you have loose leaf, the tea advances faster than the cake form. in 2003, i bought a menghai gushu cake, due to poor compression, it was already falling apart at the sides from the start. i removed the loose leaves (about half the cake worth) and put them into a canister, sealed, and the remaining compacted parts, went into a ziploc. in a recent tasting, the loose leafs advanced way faster than the compressed parts. i had given some of the loose leaves as samples to other tea chatters as an example of what could come out from such a storage method.

once compressed into a cake, the only way bulk of the leaf in the middle of the cake or brick to get exposure to oxygen, humidity, is through the surface leaves of the brick or cake. it becomes a "gradient". if you do a direct cross section of a tiebing i.e. XG8663, or if you brew the middle of the tiebing and the surface, the color is different, the wet leaf is different color too.. but all same cake. due to over-compression, it becomes "anaerobic" in the middle, and less affected by humidity.

apart from the gradient, the other issue that is critical is water/moisture content. i've done water content measurements on cakes that are newly produced to that of cakes that taste good, cakes that taste bad. so if you seal a cake, you had better know the water content of it before you do so, if not it will be overly slow, or eventually mouldy.

a dry, low compression cake was aired for a month, and when the surface and inner leaves are measured, there was almost the same water content, difference of only about 1%. but for a more heavily compressed cake, the difference between surface and core is larger, at several percent.

do not get mistaken that i'm obsessing over water here, just that i use it as an indicator of how much "air penetration" is going on into the cake, since the air brings moisture in, it would bring oxygen in too. i'm not equipped to do oxygen/gaseous studies at the moment, but if a way can be devised, it would be more revealing.


None of what you said changes what I said though - the grape juice thing is just an analogy and is not supposed to be a 1 to 1 comparison. All analogies will fall apart if you pry too hard. The point is - what you're advocating might work for where you are, but in other places with lower humidity and lower temperatures, sealing is probably going to result in teas that don't age, instead of slow age.

Just like how my friends in Beijing try very hard to put their tea in an environment with added water to speed things up - for example by sticking them in plastic bins with literally bags of water in them (albeit small amounts), because it's so dry and cold there. If he advocates that as a legitimate way to age tea everywhere, you'd tell him it won't work where you are because what you are trying to do is pretty much the opposite. So what I'm saying is what you're advocating isn't going to workin a lot of places. I don't think that's so far-fetched. It might be very useful when you folks advocate the sealing method to put a big caveat in front saying that this is from your expence in SE Asia - most of us don't live in climtes like SE Asia. Ipoh, for example, has year-round temperatures that are basically the same. Compared to that Hong Kong is a desert in the winter. What you guys do out there is your business, but I have a problem with it when it starts being touted as some universal truth (the way Hojo certainly does).


That only makes sense under the assumption that all sealed or semi-sealed environts are dry or ulteriorly dry. The point I keep seeing. kyarazen making is that this is not necessarily so and that the water content inside the sealed environment can be manipulated. This had not quite occurred to me before, but it is perfectly logical. I intend on pursuing this issue by myself, but I find very telling that the fully sealed teas he has shown here display a considerable amount of browning and coloration change - more so than most ("natural") dry stored teas of the same age that I've seen.

The crux of the matter, imo, is the following: Is this a difference in kind, or a difference in degree? Are seals, complete or partial, merely a prophilatic against excess moisture, a means of regulating it, or are they something else?

If talking about fully sealed, vaccum packed teas, I'm not sure the metaphorical use of "slow" or "slower" applies. Logic dictates that the end result over any number of years should be quite different, for better or worse. There are aged baozhongs that, inside the margin where they haven't been utterly spoiled, turn out quite different, due to some extra moisture and oxidation, from others that had more proper sealing. They are plain different teas, and neither type is young. This analogy can be extended to other teas, and quite a few other things.

edit: sorry for all the typos, writing on a crappy mobile phone.
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby kyarazen » Jun 29th, '14, 02:46

Tead Off wrote:That would depend on where you were. Large swings are very common in the western part of the U.S. In the deserts, you can have swings of 40-50 degrees at certain times of the year. Micro-climates abound.


of course there are huge swings in deserts.. that is not a place for drinking hot pu-erh tea maybe? 40-50 here refers to fahrenheits i hope...

i routinely aircondition my study room daily, the temperature difference can be up to 10 deg celsius, and even so condensation is only observed on the outside of things if i suddenly turn off the airconditioning and open the windows.. and never within a ziploc containing tea..
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby Tead Off » Jun 29th, '14, 03:05

Yes, Fahrenheit. It is just as hot here in SE Asia as it is in the desert. Humidity is quite different, though. I've never had condensation here. Humidity in my place hovers around 60%, in general. I live up in the sky. I would imagine that if I were living in a house on the ground, that could be quite different.
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby kyarazen » Jun 29th, '14, 03:07

well, dont demonize the method
you can consider asking your beijing friend to dismantle the cakes into looseleaf, would that be better with maximum exposure?

the method of sealing works every where, not limited to south east asia. it is not like we put the cake in the south east asian environment and let it absorb humidity, air, etc before sealing. if it comes sealed from the manufacturer, it is not even unsealed, except for drinking, then it goes into a proper storage bag.

just like beijing where its too dry, to prevent water loss from the cake, sealing can prevent water from escaping. your friend had to re-add water into your storage containers and poomidors or whichsoever because the tea cake, in its unsealed state has equilibrated itself with the external environment, probably many weeks or a month at least for it to be uniform from core to periphery.

a tea cake that is just steamed, pressed and rack dried, packed for shipment contains a nice percentage of water within itself, that percentage minus a few percent, is still enough for changes in sealed aging, but if you drop the water content by 10 percent or so, then it may become insufficient.

whilst you might think that this should not be touted as a universal truth, other preferred storage methods or those similar that you use may not be universal truths too

MarshalN wrote:None of what you said changes what I said though - the grape juice thing is just an analogy and is not supposed to be a 1 to 1 comparison. All analogies will fall apart if you pry too hard. The point is - what you're advocating might work for where you are, but in other places with lower humidity and lower temperatures, sealing is probably going to result in teas that don't age, instead of slow age.

Just like how my friends in Beijing try very hard to put their tea in an environment with added water to speed things up - for example by sticking them in plastic bins with literally bags of water in them (albeit small amounts), because it's so dry and cold there. If he advocates that as a legitimate way to age tea everywhere, you'd tell him it won't work where you are because what you are trying to do is pretty much the opposite. So what I'm saying is what you're advocating isn't going to work in a lot of places. I don't think that's so far-fetched. It might be very useful when you folks advocate the sealing method to put a big caveat in front saying that this is from your experience in SE Asia - most of us don't live in climates like SE Asia. Ipoh, for example, has year-round temperatures that are basically the same. Compared to that Hong Kong is a desert in the winter. What you guys do out there is your business, but I have a problem with it when it starts being touted as some universal truth (the way Hojo certainly does).
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby shah82 » Jun 29th, '14, 03:40

Ok, I'm going to have to just officially roll my eyes.

Nobody has ever had an issue with people saying that sealing teas work for them. The issue has always been the proselytizing. Promote it until you get pushback, and then "everyone has their own way". Some time later, the same cycle occurs again.

At this point, everyone has gotten your point, kyarazen. You've also been arguing with people who, frankly speaking, vastly outweigh you in respect (and experience). These arguments never lead to any sort of productive exchange of information, and no, the references to science papers and puerh books aren't particularly germane.

Lastly, any sentiment that we might be hidebound conservatives is entirely unfair. One way or another, many of us who drink a lot of different teas deal with material that have been in paper bags, plastic bags, and indeedi-o, sealed foil bags. And do you know what? We tend to think that it has aged over the years it's been there! People have had shrink-wrapped old tea, maocha, fangcha especially, and it's especially unlikely that there hasn't been people sampling shrink wrapped bings one way or another. This is not new, kyarazen. People have already tried this, in the five to fifteen year aging process sense. Yup, tea will age! According to tastes? Not necessarily so. There are advantages and disadvantages to the concept, that people generally has to judge, thus it's not really right to say that this should be the main method of storage. And success will not be about taking an itty bit out every once in a while and resealing. Success is when you have a broken up bing for ready drinking in a tin, and you generally like it every so often.
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby sung8891 » Jun 29th, '14, 04:54

MarshalN wrote:
kyarazen wrote:
MarshalN wrote:You have to remember that most places are not like Malaysia, and the storage conditions in drier, cooler places are not going to be the same. Slowing down aging via wrapping maybe a good idea in Malaysia, but my friends in Hong Kong, some of whose livelihood depends on them storing their tea well because they sell tea for a living, don't wrap their teas until they reach about 30 years old. Experiments have been run and optimal storage has been discovered a long time ago - it's not news. They've been in the business for three generations. Storing tea in places with real winters will mean even slower aging to start off with, which means that methods to make it even slower, like wrapping, is probably not going to be suitable. If someone in Chicago read this and went ahead and wrapped all his tea in shrink wrap, 30 years later he'll still have "grape juice", as shah put it. In Malaysia it might've turned into wine, but in other places it'll not be so good.

So I think a very important thing to remember is all the "shrink wrap" advocates here are talking of storage comparisons with hot and humid places like Malaysia and Singapore. YMMV if you're in a colder and drier climate.


i'm definitely not forcing people to think that sealed storage is the mainstream way to go, but to have it recognized as a possible alternative than the current condescending views to it.

actually grape juice is made into wine by controlling the oxidation, if you make it anaerobic, the juice becomes wine. if its aerobic, the juice becomes vinegar. controlled oxidation is the key

sealing is a way of controlling oxidation. many teas fear exposure, if you leave your dragonwell, spring gaoshan oolong etc exposed over time, it wont do any good to the tea. once it goes stale, your only option is to keep it for long enough, in an environment good enough for it to develop the "aged" taste (thats if the material is right, dragon well is too poorly lignified to be able to aged that way).

whilst some would argue that pu-erh tea is compressed to save space, and that it is used as a currency, make it easy to transport, the tea bricks/cakes they made in ancient days when tea was currency, is probably not the type of pu-erh we have today.

what i see pu-erh tea's compression, is an attempt to control the oxidation over time. if maximum exposure, free exposure, airy, constant high humidity is the key to aged pu-erh's good taste, then why not loosen out all the cakes in storage into loose leaf to have maximum contact and benefit from this? in reality if you have loose leaf, the tea advances faster than the cake form. in 2003, i bought a menghai gushu cake, due to poor compression, it was already falling apart at the sides from the start. i removed the loose leaves (about half the cake worth) and put them into a canister, sealed, and the remaining compacted parts, went into a ziploc. in a recent tasting, the loose leafs advanced way faster than the compressed parts. i had given some of the loose leaves as samples to other tea chatters as an example of what could come out from such a storage method.

once compressed into a cake, the only way bulk of the leaf in the middle of the cake or brick to get exposure to oxygen, humidity, is through the surface leaves of the brick or cake. it becomes a "gradient". if you do a direct cross section of a tiebing i.e. XG8663, or if you brew the middle of the tiebing and the surface, the color is different, the wet leaf is different color too.. but all same cake. due to over-compression, it becomes "anaerobic" in the middle, and less affected by humidity.

apart from the gradient, the other issue that is critical is water/moisture content. i've done water content measurements on cakes that are newly produced to that of cakes that taste good, cakes that taste bad. so if you seal a cake, you had better know the water content of it before you do so, if not it will be overly slow, or eventually mouldy.

a dry, low compression cake was aired for a month, and when the surface and inner leaves are measured, there was almost the same water content, difference of only about 1%. but for a more heavily compressed cake, the difference between surface and core is larger, at several percent.

do not get mistaken that i'm obsessing over water here, just that i use it as an indicator of how much "air penetration" is going on into the cake, since the air brings moisture in, it would bring oxygen in too. i'm not equipped to do oxygen/gaseous studies at the moment, but if a way can be devised, it would be more revealing.


None of what you said changes what I said though - the grape juice thing is just an analogy and is not supposed to be a 1 to 1 comparison. All analogies will fall apart if you pry too hard. The point is - what you're advocating might work for where you are, but in other places with lower humidity and lower temperatures, sealing is probably going to result in teas that don't age, instead of slow age.

Just like how my friends in Beijing try very hard to put their tea in an environment with added water to speed things up - for example by sticking them in plastic bins with literally bags of water in them (albeit small amounts), because it's so dry and cold there. If he advocates that as a legitimate way to age tea everywhere, you'd tell him it won't work where you are because what you are trying to do is pretty much the opposite. So what I'm saying is what you're advocating isn't going to work in a lot of places. I don't think that's so far-fetched. It might be very useful when you folks advocate the sealing method to put a big caveat in front saying that this is from your experience in SE Asia - most of us don't live in climates like SE Asia. Ipoh, for example, has year-round temperatures that are basically the same. Compared to that Hong Kong is a desert in the winter. What you guys do out there is your business, but I have a problem with it when it starts being touted as some universal truth (the way Hojo certainly does).



Errrr.....I live in Ipoh , Malaysia , have been storing teas for more than 30 years. When they organised the Malaysian storage event in Kl 2 years ago , the organisers came to visit me together with the tea reviewers and found that my unshrinked wrapped Huang Yin was a good example of dry stored Malaysian storage tea. Following that we had another tea sampling session in Penang where we sampled 2 50s tiebing. One belonging to one of the reviewers which was stored in shenzhen and the other, belonging to me , also unshrink wrapped . The reviewers in that session also found my tiebing to be better . None of the collectors of note whom I know shrink wrap or vacuum pack our tea for storage. Vendors however , do. That's because they need to display them and also allow customers to look at them and sometimes handle them.
I have said this before here. Before you invest in tea for future consumption , you need to ensure first that the tea you buy is suitable for aging. Not all puerhs are created equal and just because someone sells you a cake of tea and tells you it is puerh , does not mean that the tea will age into a good vintage tea , no matter how excellent your storage.
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby sung8891 » Jun 29th, '14, 05:19

Shrink wrapping delays the aging of the tea. So when someone sells you a cake and tells you to keep it that way , the first thing that should ask yourself , is why ? Does he know something about the tea that you don't ?You also need to remember that puerh is not a tea that is traditionally drunk fresh. It is meant to be drunk aged , not only old. Keep your tea shrink wrapped or vacuum packed for 10 years and your tea will be 10 year old tea not tea that had been aged for 10 years.
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby kyarazen » Jun 29th, '14, 08:05

I dont think so, shah82, but thats not necessary, since different people have different levels and selective information absorption/retentions.

that's your opinion on "respect and experience", just because someone hasnt written much online, and hasnt gathered a huge following online would always be regarded as "less" known, "less experienced" than those who do it early. and just because someone has written a lot on pu-erh reviews and opinions on forums doesnt equate to respect and experience.

May I invite the experienced, and the famous, to offer/provide an online lecture or a simple article on how to drink tea, or how to taste pu-erh? It will be excellent for everyone to learn from such a discourse, and for respect to be given by others where it is due. it would be nice to be along these themes : 饮茶与喝茶之别, 普洱茶香味韵之论

i had opened another thread for a more intellectual discussion/argument but so far just managed to lure out some of the more discussive people which i am glad. My aim here is to have everything ironed out and rationalized, through discussion, achieve new understandings and knowledge for everyone. if you dont think any information from scientific approaches, written publications, papers to be any what informative nor useful, then we are on different frequencies, and should cease to correspond anymore.

the worst thing for pu-erh is to be treated as a blind, voodoo ritual, almost like a "leap of faith" thing. but if it is meant to be that way, then its so sad that tea culture and tea art has to end up this way.


shah82 wrote:
At this point, everyone has gotten your point, kyarazen. You've also been arguing with people who, frankly speaking, vastly outweigh you in respect (and experience). These arguments never lead to any sort of productive exchange of information, and no, the references to science papers and puerh books aren't particularly germane.

Lastly, any sentiment that we might be hidebound conservatives is entirely unfair. One way or another, many of us who drink a lot of different teas deal with material that have been in paper bags, plastic bags, and indeedi-o, sealed foil bags. And do you know what? We tend to think that it has aged over the years it's been there! People have had shrink-wrapped old tea, maocha, fangcha especially, and it's especially unlikely that there hasn't been people sampling shrink wrapped bings one way or another. This is not new, kyarazen. People have already tried this, in the five to fifteen year aging process sense. Yup, tea will age! According to tastes? Not necessarily so. There are advantages and disadvantages to the concept, that people generally has to judge, thus it's not really right to say that this should be the main method of storage. And success will not be about taking an itty bit out every once in a while and resealing. Success is when you have a broken up bing for ready drinking in a tin, and you generally like it every so often.
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby MarshalN » Jun 29th, '14, 08:37

kyarazen wrote:
the worst thing for pu-erh is to be treated as a blind, voodoo ritual, almost like a "leap of faith" thing. but if it is meant to be that way, then its so sad that tea culture and tea art has to end up this way.


And you assume that all of us are treating it as a blind, voodoo ritual and that you are the only one who knows the truth, when in fact it's mostly a matter of taste in these cases. There are people who love new cakes with no aging. There are people who only want teas with wet storage taste. And there is everything in between. If your shrink wrapping is working for you, great, but I don't really care, and stop telling us we're all blind idiots who believe in magic because we don't follow your way. I frankly cannot be bothered to shrink wrap the hundreds of cakes I have. I stick them in a closed cupboard and rarely open its doors. It's good enough for me. Your way is not the only way.

I post here not to belittle your method - you can do whatever you want with your tea. I post here so other people reading it don't think that shrink wrapping is the only way to get good aged tea.
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby kyarazen » Jun 29th, '14, 08:58

sung8891 wrote: Before you invest in tea for future consumption , you need to ensure first that the tea you buy is suitable for aging. Not all puerhs are created equal and just because someone sells you a cake of tea and tells you it is puerh , does not mean that the tea will age into a good vintage tea , no matter how excellent your storage.


that is great to hear as from my observations and studies for the past decade and a half, that not all tea is suitable for aging.

can you share what are the characteristics that would allow pu-erh to be aged, your way into an excellent tea? what do you look out for and how would you choose? do you also happen to have tasting notes every once in a while to see how the tea has progressed? this will be useful and interesting information
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kyarazen
 
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby kyarazen » Jun 29th, '14, 09:09

its all mirrored. its the same way that many are treating the sealed storers as blind, voodoo rituals, and that the exposed storers are the ones that know the truth. hasnt it been that way all the while?

its only that I'm interested in figuring out the differences, de-convolute. isnt that similar to an academic process of research where one collects data and information, rationalize it, provide new hypothesis? and then test the hypothesis? collect the views of people whom propose, and oppose, and do a synthesis on it?

i post here not to replace the main stream method, but to offer a rational alternative, and together with all the understandings that are becoming clear to be discussed. this is what a forum is about, not a cult gathering where people come together and sing "hail o'pu-erh and hallowed be thy age". similarly, i post here, so that people wont think that exposed storage is the way to get good aged tea.


just a question, why not throw your cabinet doors open and have it air-ed even more? a closed cupboard is a confined environment, and when stocked full enough with the doors closed is a form of controlled, semi-sealed environment.




MarshalN wrote:And you assume that all of us are treating it as a blind, voodoo ritual and that you are the only one who knows the truth, when in fact it's mostly a matter of taste in these cases. There are people who love new cakes with no aging. There are people who only want teas with wet storage taste. And there is everything in between. If your shrink wrapping is working for you, great, but I don't really care, and stop telling us we're all blind idiots who believe in magic because we don't follow your way. I frankly cannot be bothered to shrink wrap the hundreds of cakes I have. I stick them in a closed cupboard and rarely open its doors. It's good enough for me. Your way is not the only way.

I post here not to belittle your method - you can do whatever you want with your tea. I post here so other people reading it don't think that shrink wrapping is the only way to get good aged tea.
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Re: Aging Puerh.

Postby Tofsla » Jun 29th, '14, 09:29

shah82 wrote:Even then, Malaysian dry stored tea I've had are just not very wet, though I've never had unattended tea. Taiwan dry stored is much more humid tasting.


I was told that it is rather hot and humid all year round in KL, either. Ricky Heng, from Da Zi Zai Tea Arts, in KL, stores all his teas for more than 20 years already in a room without any air-conditioning at the first floor. I have been to that room, and, by European standards, it is extremely hot and very humid in there. Nevertheless, his teas are very clean, with no humid taste, with the exception of the few teas that were a little aged in a more humid environment already, when he had bought them. He told me that his teas would taste "wet", if he stored them on the ground floor in the same building (or any other one). Though, frankly, I did not notice much difference in the micro-climate - which is just like sauna - in the unconditioned rooms on the ground, or the first floor, or the outside, when it is not raining.

Anyway, I guess, the teas that were stored in a ground floor room would still be called "dry stored", while, according to Ricky, their taste is quite different.

Moreover, I have had "dry stored" teas from GZ that, while they were decent and to my taste (like, for example, those from Feng Yu's shop), tasted somewhat more humid to me than properly traditionally stored teas that spent few years in a very hot and humid warehouse in HK and were airing out on Taiwan afterwards (like those from teaclassico). On the other hand, I have heard that some people found Tony's Taiwanese "dry stored" teas rather wet, indeed (I have not tried them myself).

So, there are examples of cleaner and wetter storage from each of the places in SE Asia. And, it seems, every individual storage room's conditions add more to the taste of tea than its actual location - Taiwan, Malaysia, HK, or GZ - provided the latter is hot and humid for the best part of the year. The short dry season in HK does not seem to matter for the end result so much - though, it may slow the aging process down a little.
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