Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?


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Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby ChengduCha » Sep 28th, '12, 05:55

I bought some 2011 Dayi 7262 - 102 a while ago.

When I tested it in the tea shop it had a lasting sweet aftertaste, however I can't seem to re-create it.

I'm brewing it the same way with a gaiwan, tried different amounts, seal seems real and not fake as far as I can tell.

Did the shop owner use a better tea for the sample? Is there such variance in cakes?

I'm curious what might be the reason.
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby theredbaron » Sep 28th, '12, 07:46

What water are you using?
Wrong water can negatively impact any tea.
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby ChengduCha » Sep 28th, '12, 08:30

I use bottled water with a neutral pH at 7.3
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby theredbaron » Sep 28th, '12, 10:25

ChengduCha wrote:I use bottled water with a neutral pH at 7.3


What is the mineral contend? PH is just one thing but more important is the mineral content. High mineral content is death for good tea.
The waters i use which are available here is Volvic and Fiji. Which brand are you using?
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby ChengduCha » Sep 28th, '12, 10:52

Nongfu Spring water, which is the most popular bottled water in China.

No idea about the mineral content, can't read chinese.

I bought a different brand today just to check if it makes any difference.

Imported bottled waters like Volvic are ridiculously expensive here.
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby MarshalN » Sep 28th, '12, 12:22

Where is your nongfu from? Nongfu sources it water from multiple springs. Only the qiandaohu one is worth buying. Some taste positively nasty.

Water is the most likely culprit with aftertaste issues.
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby theredbaron » Sep 28th, '12, 13:03

ChengduCha wrote:Nongfu Spring water, which is the most popular bottled water in China.

No idea about the mineral content, can't read chinese.

I bought a different brand today just to check if it makes any difference.

Imported bottled waters like Volvic are ridiculously expensive here.


I would suggest to buy just a bottle or two of Volvic. This is a good water, and could somehow set a standard. See if the aftertaste issues still remain, or if solved. Then you might have to go and try to find a cheaper local water which could come close to Volvic.
Here in Bangkok Volvic isn't cheap either - about 2 US $ for a 1 1/2 Liter bottle, Fiji about a third more expensive. But some luxuries i won't deny myself.
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby ChengduCha » Sep 28th, '12, 14:25

MarshalN wrote:Where is your nongfu from? Nongfu sources it water from multiple springs. Only the qiandaohu one is worth buying. Some taste positively nasty.

Water is the most likely culprit with aftertaste issues.


I can't read chinese so I have no idea where it's from. I suppose it's sourced locally in Chengdu though like most bottled waters.
Last edited by ChengduCha on Sep 28th, '12, 14:31, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby ChengduCha » Sep 28th, '12, 14:30

theredbaron wrote:I would suggest to buy just a bottle or two of Volvic. This is a good water, and could somehow set a standard. See if the aftertaste issues still remain, or if solved. Then you might have to go and try to find a cheaper local water which could come close to Volvic.
Here in Bangkok Volvic isn't cheap either - about 2 US $ for a 1 1/2 Liter bottle, Fiji about a third more expensive. But some luxuries i won't deny myself.


I'll try to find some. I used to live in Bangkok and regularly miss the readily available luxury goods at reasonable prices. :D

I bought some Cestbon purified water today which tastes more soft than Nongfu Spring and will try it tomorrow.

Some tea shops here use special barrels of water with a fancy mountain hologram. I need to ask next time where they get it from.

Thanks for your input so far. :)
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby MarshalN » Sep 28th, '12, 22:05

Well, I don't know what spring Nongfu sources from in Chengdu, but I can tell you the ones I've had in Beijing that came from this spring in the NE sucked. It was salty and gross.

So basically, try new waters until you find the right one. Ask the shop what water they use, for example
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby chrl42 » Sep 28th, '12, 22:11

Nongfu contains relatively high minerals although this company has various sources where they come from..many Pu shops I've seen use distilled water.
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby jayinhk » Sep 28th, '12, 22:16

I think Volvic actually has a pretty high mineral content:

http://www.mineralwaters.org/index.php? ... arval=2761

http://www.mineralwaters.org/index.php? ... arval=2761

This is a great site for the mineral water aficionados. I just drink Brita-filtered tap water or boiled tap water (like most of HK) down here at work since I haven't brought the spare Brita down here yet. Incidentally, HK being granite and basalt (volcanic rock), our local water should have a somewhat similar mineral content, although of course our water is treat and diluted with treated river water from China.

Of course, not everything in the water is listed on the label, particularly in China, so if it tastes funny, run. :D

Distilled water would have the lowest number of solutes. I may have to try some later today to see if it makes a difference.

Mineral water is a great business: even in the US, lots of 'spring water' just comes from municipal water supplies.
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby TwoDog2 » Sep 28th, '12, 23:09

ChengduCha wrote:I bought some 2011 Dayi 7262 - 102 a while ago.

When I tested it in the tea shop it had a lasting sweet aftertaste, however I can't seem to re-create it.

I'm brewing it the same way with a gaiwan, tried different amounts, seal seems real and not fake as far as I can tell.

Did the shop owner use a better tea for the sample? Is there such variance in cakes?


Since water has been covered, there are some other possibilities.

Yes, cakes can have variance.
Yes, it is possible they gave you something better in a sampling and sold you a different cake.

Not saying water isn't to blame, but both of the above are possibilities too.
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby TomVerlain » Sep 28th, '12, 23:29

outer part of the cake, compared to inner parts, and if it is broken up too much, might add to bitterness.
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Re: Cake different from testing in shop - what went wrong?

Postby MarshalN » Sep 28th, '12, 23:35

Something else - if it's a cake that they've had out for a while as a sample, the airing out might have done something to the cake, although usually not drastic.
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