Another where to start...


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

Another where to start...

Postby GreenTeaChad » Jan 16th, '13, 04:12

Hello, I haven't had any pu-erh and I've been doing alot or research on the topic as well as reading blogs. I have to admit that I dont feel like I know much more about it than I did when I started. Between all the vendors and the factories it can be a little overwhelming. I contacted Scott at Yunann sourcing and he recommended the following raw and cooked:

I'll list a few teas in each category that I feel might be interesting and good.
Cooked
2005 Xiaguan "Xiao Fa Tuo" Aged Ripe Pu-erh tea tuo in box
2007 Menghai Tea Factory 7262 Ripe Pu-erh Tea cake
2012 Yunnan Sourcing "Dragon of Jing Mai" Ripe Pu-erh tea mini cake
2009 Mengku "981007" Recipe Ripe Pu-erh tea cake * 400 grams
2006 Menghai "San Ji Pu Bing" Ripe Pu-erh tea cake * 357 grams
2011 Yunnan Sourcing "Man Tang Hong Gong Ting" Ripe Pu-erh tea cake
1996 CNNP "Green Mark Te Ji" Ripe Pu-erh tea cake
2002 Menghai 7592 201 Ripe Pu-erh Tea cake * 357 grams
2010 Menghai V93 Ripe Pu-erh tea tuo

Raw Pu-erh
2012 Yunnan Sourcing "Qiu Yun" Wild Arbor Raw Pu-erh tea of Yi Wu mountain
2004 Xiaguan "Crane Label" Te Ji Raw Pu-erh tea in box
2006 Mengku "Gu Hua Cha" Raw Pu-erh tea cake * 400 grams
2000 Gu Pu Er "Green Mark Qi Zi" Raw Pu-erh tea cake * 357 grams
2012 Yunnan Sourcing "Chen Xiang" Aged Raw Pu-erh of Wu Liang Mountain
2012 Yunnan Sourcing "Ye Sheng Cha" Wild Tree Purple Tea of Dehong
2012 Menghai Tea Factory "7532 201" Raw Pu-erh Tea cake
2002 Yi Wu "Ancient Spirit" Raw Pu-erh Tea cake * 330 grams
2002 Feng Qing "Jia Ji Tuo Cha" Aged Raw Pu-erh tea
2011 Yunnan Sourcing "Pasha Mountain" Autumn Raw Pu-erh tea cake * 400 grams
2003 Wu Chi Dao "Mengku Zheng Shan" Raw Pu-erh Tea cake
2011 Yunnan Sourcing "Mu Shu Cha" Ancient Arbor Raw Pu-erh tea cake

I would only order samples of some of these.

A lot of these say where they come from, but I'm having a hard time understanding where some of the teas talked about in the forums come from. I read about things that I might like to try and have no idea where to find it.

I would like any feedback on these suggestions as well as a point in the right direction. Is there any factories/vendors that you prefer for certain types? I'm sure that alot of this has been discussed and would appreciate any links to threads.

I can see that this tea is going to cause me many nights without sleep. :D
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Re: Another where to start...

Postby TwoDog2 » Jan 16th, '13, 04:34

Scott is smart and those recommendations seem good. Pick a few that appeal to you and order some samples. My recommendation would be to try at least one raw tea older than 10 years, at least one over 5 years, and at least one from last year. It ought to give you a base for understanding what aging means and what young tea is.

Since you are just starting, you might not know what kinds of teas you like, but you might have an idea of what sorts of flavors or feelings you like, things like heavy bitterness, tobacco flavors, fruity flavors, woody flavors, astringency, light, or heavy. If you have any reaction to those, you might write them in a post, since it will help people suggest. Otherwise, just sample some teas and dive in.
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Re: Another where to start...

Postby ChengduCha » Jan 16th, '13, 04:57

GreenTeaChad wrote:Hello, I haven't had any pu-erh and I've been doing alot or research on the topic as well as reading blogs. I have to admit that I dont feel like I know much more about it than I did when I started.


Your experience basically only builds up when you try lots of pu. Without some experience, most postings and discussions won't make much sense.

Between all the vendors and the factories it can be a little overwhelming.


There's lots of stuff out there, but ordering a bunch of samples of medium priced Yunnan Sourcing brand pus together with a cheap plain gaiwan, a pitcher, a strainer and small sipping cups is the best plan of attack.

I contacted Scott at Yunann sourcing and he recommended the following raw and cooked:


He definetely knows his stuff, so ordering samples of all (if available) would make sense, but in case you end up not liking pu (tastes are different after all) it might be too much of an initial outlay.

I therefore recommend just getting samples of medium priced ($15-$40) YS brand shu and sheng cakes. How many is up to you, but $60 in total is probably the minimum amount I'd go for to get any idea about the different kind of tastes. You'll eventually end up with some stuff that you don't like at all, but that's your tution. :D

A lot of these say where they come from, but I'm having a hard time understanding where some of the teas talked about in the forums come from. I read about things that I might like to try and have no idea where to find it.


Some forum posters either live in China, buy from local dealers or have some connections to dealers in HK / China, so lots of pu can't easily be sourced by you or me. This doesn't really matter though - just buy a bunch of YS samples and expand your horizon on what you like.
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Re: Another where to start...

Postby ChengduCha » Jan 16th, '13, 05:07

TwoDog2 wrote:My recommendation would be to try at least one raw tea older than 10 years


That's where it gets complicated at YS, because they pretty much sell none that is much older than 10 years and I never had a 10 year old sheng so far that tasted very aged.
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Re: Another where to start...

Postby apache » Jan 16th, '13, 09:09

GreenTeaChad wrote: ...
A lot of these say where they come from, but I'm having a hard time understanding where some of the teas talked about in the forums come from. I read about things that I might like to try and have no idea where to find it.
....


Just write out exactly what you like to find or try, surely someone on this forum would able to help.
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Re: Another where to start...

Postby jayinhk » Jan 16th, '13, 09:12

For a beginner who's never tried pu, you've certainly done your homework!

I remember buying my first bag of loose shu last year: I just walked into a store on my walk to work and bought some without knowing anything about it.
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Re: Another where to start...

Postby gasninja » Jan 16th, '13, 14:52

The 02 Yi wu ancient spirit
And to a lesser extent
The 00 gu puer

Will be the only cakes that may have a slight bit of aged taste

You might wanna try the 02 tian Lian international Puerh expo cake as well .
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Re: Another where to start...

Postby GreenTeaChad » Jan 16th, '13, 15:37

Thanks for all the great replies.

gasninja wrote:The 02 Yi wu ancient spirit
And to a lesser extent
The 00 gu puer

Will be the only cakes that may have a slight bit of aged taste

You might wanna try the 02 tian Lian international Puerh expo cake as well .


Is the Is the 02 tian lian internation puerh expo cake in the list or is that from another vendor?

I greatly appreciate all the help and suggestions. I will reread all the post after work.
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Re: Another where to start...

Postby GreenTeaChad » Jan 16th, '13, 15:38

Also, are there any recommendations an a niced aged to try and a vendor?
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Re: Another where to start...

Postby teaisme » Jan 16th, '13, 15:56

I liked the wuchidao ,ancient spirit, and 2003 chang bao in the 'other' section of yunnan sourcing

If this ripe is anything like its raw counterpart in terms of quality, it should be well worth $3.20 for a 125g mini cake.
http://www.yunnansourcing.com/store/pro ... oduct=2271
I liked this raw one too...
http://www.yunnansourcing.com/store/pro ... roduct=254

After sampling, and lengthily scouring the internet for trusted recommendations, I am considering for my next purchase...
http://www.yunnansourcing.com/store/pro ... oduct=2073
http://www.yunnansourcing.com/store/pro ... roduct=124
http://www.yunnansourcing.com/store/pro ... roduct=549
http://www.yunnansourcing.com/store/pro ... roduct=220
http://www.yunnansourcing.com/store/pro ... oduct=1949
http://www.yunnansourcing.com/store/pro ... oduct=1366
http://www.yunnansourcing.com/store/pro ... oduct=2105

Hope this helps!

edit:unlike many a tea, I find puerh to be rather suited for blending little randoms here and there. Adding something more, without taking something out is easier said then done though. If you are up for it...
http://www.yunnansourcing.com/store/pro ... oduct=2254
http://www.yunnansourcing.com/store/pro ... oduct=2185

Chamomile works well too, but very little or else it will quickly overpower the tea, one or two tiny flowers in a pot is enough for me. What works for me is using much less then I think is enough :mrgreen:
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Re: Another where to start...

Postby apache » Jan 16th, '13, 20:21

GreenTeaChad wrote:Also, are there any recommendations an a niced aged to try and a vendor?


This gives me headache! :wink:
I think you want some aged samples, not a whole cake or brick or tuo to break the bank ...

You could tried
EoT: http://www.essenceoftea.co.uk/tea/puerh-tea/aged-puerh.html
Some would say they aren't dry enough, but I think they are ok, just about right in term of storage condition. And I really hate mummified pu.

These two I myself never tried, but others on this forum had, don't blame me if it doesn't go to plan
Houde: http://www.houdeasianart.com/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=13

Sampletea: http://www.sampletea.com/

I think Tim also have some nice one:
http://themandarinstea.blogspot.co.uk/

If all fail, at a last resort PM me. :|
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Re: Another where to start...

Postby GreenTeaChad » Jan 21st, '13, 00:26

Just wanted to say thanks for all the help. I will repost in this thread when I make an order.
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Re: Another where to start...

Postby GreenTeaChad » Feb 17th, '13, 17:48

Well I talked my wife into letting me buy most of these samples from scott. Is there any of them that I should scratch off the list or add? I did add a sample of the 02 tian lian internation puerh expo cake to the list. I'm a little unsure about ordering this much because I havent tried any puerh. I think with a wider selection I will be able to decide if this is something I like or not.

Also, is there some kind of thread or group that talks about the puerh they are currently buying and how they think it will age? Or is that kind of thing kept secret? :D
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Re: Another where to start...

Postby ChengduCha » Feb 18th, '13, 06:45

GreenTeaChad wrote:Is there any of them that I should scratch off the list or add?


You can google each and check opinions of drinkers (if there are any) - although that doesn't necessarily mean much depending on your tastes. There are lots of pu erh drinkers in Russia these days so google translate helps sometimes.

If you like things sweet get a sample of any "CHA TOU SHENG YUN" brick or some loose lao cha tou. That's most likely to win over your wife. :D

Also, is there some kind of thread or group that talks about the puerh they are currently buying and how they think it will age? Or is that kind of thing kept secret? :D


There are not that many western pu erh drinkers due to the fact that good quality pu erh can only be obtained in a handful of tea shops in western countries.

The general consensus in china seems to be: an awfully strong and often astringent young pu erh, that wrecks your stomach and survives a large amount of infusions will age well and that's proven somewhat by my very limited sample size, however depending on the taste it can age in totally different directions that can evolve for more than 20 years, so a good aging and the ideal aging point is totally up to personal tastes.

Hobbes at half-dipper.blogspot.com tries loads of pu erh and his opinions are a good starting point, although your tastes might differ from his.
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