Is it really worth that much?


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

Postby gingkoseto » Oct 15th, '08, 10:14

tenuki wrote:As far as 'what is expensive' - Let's take one of my other 20+ year puerh as an example, it cost ~360 US dollars for ~400g purchased in china. Let's round that out to $1/g for convenience.

Since it likes about 4g/100ml that means the cost of a pot is 4 dollars. It goes for around 15 brewings per pot, so that is ~ 25 cents cup of tea. My wife pays 4 dollars for 12 oz of crappy starbucks coffee every day and doesn't think of it at all. People regularily pay 1.20 for _water_. Think about it...


Good math and good point! People should really make more of this kind of comparison, between good tea and generic coffee, between fresh fruits and regular ice cream, between loose leaf tea and tea bags...

The other day I also noticed in the grocery most tea bag product contains only 20 bags in a pack and each tea bag is only 1 gram. So many people are paying $3-5 per 20 grams for shredded tea leaves!
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Postby Salsero » Oct 15th, '08, 14:40

tony shlongini wrote: Exactly. Knowledge is power, and there's no substitute for valued opinions provided by people you trust.
My impression is that puerh market pricing is even less efficient than wine pricing. Small pu factories sell at a big discount that they often don't deserve, and a small number of big names command an inordinate premium because of the brand name.
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Postby tenuki » Oct 15th, '08, 15:42

Salsero wrote:
tony shlongini wrote: Exactly. Knowledge is power, and there's no substitute for valued opinions provided by people you trust.
My impression is that puerh market pricing is even less efficient than wine pricing. Small pu factories sell at a big discount that they often don't deserve, and a small number of big names command an inordinate premium because of the brand name.


This is due to the high lvl of deceit, counterfeiting and just overall crap in the puerh market IMO. If a known factory produces a reliable product and is effective at reducing counterfeiters it will be able to command a premium price.

Remember the puerh industry was only recently privatized (1996-1999) and due to the nature of puerh and aging I'm guessing this won't self regulate for another 10 years or so.
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Postby puerhking » Oct 15th, '08, 17:38

Thanks for all of your thoughtful comments.

When I first got into wine I thought higher priced wines, especially ones with good ratings would be like a completely new experience. Ultimately I was a bit disillusioned by this not being the case. Even though I have not tasted Petrus or Mouton or some limited production California cult wine.....I know I will never be so amazed that it would change my conception of wine. In the end I think this is a good thing. I dont have to believe in the hype and absurdity...wasting time and money. I believe this lesson carries over to puerh.

Having said that what you guys say about buying samples, especially of expensive puerhs, is the way to go. I have avoided this in the past but I have not spent more than $35 on a single beeng either. This forum is a great thing also...let there be no doubt as you guys have stated.

In the end I will probably buy most of my puerh as they are released and some that are 2-5 years old as well.....with a sprinkle or two of cakes that are 5-10 years old.

Anyway.....thanks again for your thought provoking comments.
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Postby tony shlongini » Oct 15th, '08, 22:06

puerhking wrote:Even though I have not tasted Petrus or Mouton or some limited production California cult wine.....I know I will never be so amazed that it would change my conception of wine.


Omitting the California cult wine, most of which is crap, I respectfully disagree. If you try a truly great wine, you will be more amazed than you can imagine. Very few wines fall into this category, and price is not necessarily indicative of quality. I was fortunate enough to have such an experience this past Sunday-

http://badgerandblade.com/vb/showpost.p ... stcount=48

It's very good to know what the best of the best is like in order to better gauge quality at different price points. I'm still searching for that almost perfect pu'er, and I imagine that search will continue for quite some time.
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Postby puerhking » Oct 17th, '08, 00:10

Clearly tony you have more experience with high end wines........so I cannot argue with you. Perhaps I will be able to find out for my self at some point. Thanks for the imput.
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Postby tony shlongini » Oct 17th, '08, 10:04

puerhking wrote:Clearly tony you have more experience with high end wines........so I cannot argue with you. Perhaps I will be able to find out for my self at some point. Thanks for the imput.


Don't worry, puerhking- the single most important thing you'll learn from uber high end wines is that wine need not be expensive to be good or to be enjoyed. Sounds as if you're already well on your way.
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Postby chrl42 » Oct 17th, '08, 10:48

History of Puerh,

In ancient times, had been drunk by ethnic minorities on mountains and a few elites who knew the taste yet largely abandoned just as 'poor people's tea'.

In 70~80's, while China was suffering from Cultural Revolution, capitalized folks from Hong Kong came up to Yunnan, sweeped the amount of Puerh and sold to the Taiwanese, another capitalized who knew one or two on how to spend money. Hong Kong sellers knew how to see the future, it scored big!

Next target was the Koreans and SE asians. Hong Kong, Taiwanese and now Cantonese combined sold Puerh just as 10 times more than it would cost in their land. But whoa, Koreans had some admiration for 'aging'!

Now it's a mainland Chinese on the verge of capitalism and even Americans! But too sad, 'aged' Puerh already hid its presence, drunk by a few endowed ones with a grin. tons of new Puerh manufacters are born newly and most see the bankrupcy before arising.

I was just kidding, I don't know if it's worth it or not. But for one thing, I do know how it alludes people madly. There are 300 Koreans who live in Yunnan, live on mountains with ethnic minorities, eat and sleep together, feed cows and pigs in the morning. I know how it makes some people chat over night, gives a delight of life sometimes agony even..

The next, I don't know..time will tell(or not). Overall, it is indeed tea of 'mystery' :lol:
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