Puerh Information and Puerh Shame


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

Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby 茶藝-TeaArt08 » Jul 18th, '13, 13:22

Greetings!

We have two boys staying with us from Shenzhen, China right now for three weeks. One of them brought me a disc of puerh from Menghai. It's a "Feet Of Crab" cake from his father. I was reading up on the cake and it turns out some people (Western) say not too drink too much because of the blending with the tea tree's specific form of mistletoe. Does anyone know anything about this? Also, the cake has a stamp for special grade but how would I authenticate this and, if it's not too much to ask, is there any way to tell the date of disc without opening it? It's currently sealed in plastic and wrapped in the standard paper.

I am very seldom in puerh territory and I know it's a passion of many here. Years ago my wife's father's Taiwanese business and governmental friends brought us a disc of puerh while visiting the U.S. It was in a special handmade silk bag and we were told cost over a $1000 U.S. dollars. Unfortunately, since we didn't really appreciate puerh, tending at that time to drink mainly high mt. Taiwan teas and Japanese green tea, not knowing very much about puerh (this was probably eight-nine years ago and I had no interest then in puerh) we drank some and thought it wasn't bad. Now I feel what a mistake our ignorance was. I'd much rather have passed the disc onto, or shared the disc with, someone whom could have really appreciated the value and flavor of the disc. Compounding our puerh ignorance, after it sat 2/3 unused in the pantry for a while, I think my wife threw it out figuring the tea was "old." Can you imagine? :shock: Total loss, complete shame. I hang my head in shame. :shock: :roll: :lol:

I found "Menghai Feet Of Crab" puerh mentioned here (viewtopic.php?f=20&t=7045&p=207492&hilit=menghai+feet+of+crab#p207492) but have yet to find some really solid advice on this type of puerh. I read that it may be unhealthy if consumed in large amounts. I'd be grateful if anyone could shed some light on it for me, I so seldom delve into puerh territory. In fact, receiving this disc brought to mind the story above.

Thanks,

Scott
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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby shah82 » Jul 18th, '13, 13:32

In 2004, the only teas that would cost that much would be high quality 60s and 70s aged cakes. A Red Mark was around 3k-5k back then, I believe.

So dude, if you actually threw away a bonafide $1000 cake, it's probably worth somewheres over $10000, and more like $20000 today.
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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby 茶藝-TeaArt08 » Jul 18th, '13, 13:50

shah82 wrote:In 2004, the only teas that would cost that much would be high quality 60s and 70s aged cakes. A Red Mark was around 3k-5k back then, I believe.

So dude, if you actually threw away a bonafide $1000 cake, it's probably worth somewheres over $10000, and more like $20000 today.


Yeah, I figured it could be something like that though I have no way to know right now what it was. This next year in Taiwan I could bring it up and ask. My father-in-law's friends are big money players in Taiwan, guys for instance that have exclusive Pepsi distribution rights in Taiwan etc., so it's very possible the disc was a truly expensive disc, especially since the men are all fellow Taiwanese Lyon's Club members and my wife's father worked for the government.

Like I said....shame. :oops:
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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby MEversbergII » Jul 18th, '13, 14:22

I don't know about crab feet, but I do know "crab pincers" are a parasite that grow on tea trees in Yunnan. It's a medicine, which if I remember is also a laxative.

M.
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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby 茶藝-TeaArt08 » Jul 18th, '13, 15:50

Here's a picture of the cake:

Image

I don't know about crab feet, but I do know "crab pincers" are a parasite that grow on tea trees in Yunnan. It's a medicine, which if I remember is also a laxative.

M.


M.,
My understanding is that they're the same (crab legs, crab feet, etc.).
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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby teaisme » Jul 18th, '13, 16:06

safe in small proportions to tea I imagine

http://yunnansourcing.com/en/flower-and ... uchen.html
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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby MEversbergII » Jul 18th, '13, 16:07

I'll be. Feet of crab.

Being a Chesapeake guy, I know one or two things about crabs. They are as follows:

1) They're disgusting tasting

That's about it.

Anyways, back to the topic, this is the only thing I've read about them: http://teaurchin.blogspot.com/2012/11/w ... ngmai.html

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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby Drax » Jul 18th, '13, 17:39

Yes, I remember the Feet of Crab discussion from many years back.

The best advice I can still give is what I gave back then -- I (personally) would balk at drinking it pure (the Feet of Crab, that is), but it's probably okay with the small amount added to the tea. It would be nice to find out if anybody drinks FoC pure (or knows anybody who does) and see what they think, but we have yet to run into such a person here!
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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby MrEffendi » Jul 18th, '13, 21:07

Just look up "mithridatism." Drink a small amount of the crab stuff every day and gradually increase the dosage. Write down what toxic/psychoactive type effects the substance has and keep us posted. (Just joking. Don't actually do this.)
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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby Tead Off » Jul 18th, '13, 23:02

The Tea Urchin blog shows quite clearly the fungus growing. I drank some tea with this fungus mixed into it at my local puerh shop several months ago. It added an interesting flavor and I was told it was medicinal and prized in Yunnan. I lived to tell the tale. :D
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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby gingkoseto » Jul 18th, '13, 23:31

This thing was typically made for herbal medicine and put in meat soup (to make tonic soup). After it was related to tea, it became super expensive. But I suspect it's getting super inexpensive now, because a tea seller just gifted me such a cake (of a different brand) with my purchase of <1000rmb :mrgreen: Honestly I don't know how to use it. Maybe put it in some meat soup :mrgreen:

Yunnan is a strange place. A lot of stuff there could cause allergy response of outsiders (including some "wild tea"). But this thing should be ok as long as used moderately. After all, there are people who died from drinking too much and too strong tea. So we can't always blame the stuff for any shock reaction :mrgreen:
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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby Teaism » Jul 19th, '13, 00:48

Feet of crab is mixed into Puer tea and seldom we have a pure feet of crab tea. It is too expensive now. Last year China TV went to the region that produce this and featured the feet of crab quite glamourously. The price went up skyhigh after that.

Those in the market, if authentic can cost a lot. And of course, we never know what is real or fake especially most people have not seen or taste the real thing.

Attached is a photo of pure dried feet of crab (without any tea leaves), which I kept for reference.

Being fungus or herb, as in tea, all should be drank in moderation. Tea drinking is part of a wholistic approach for good health.
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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby bannacha » Jul 19th, '13, 08:24

Crab’s feet, or Pangxie Jiao, grows on many kind of trees. In yunnan, those growing on ancient tea trees are particularly sought after. They cost thousands of yuan per kilo.
It’s used in traditional medicine, but it can also be brewed in a gaiwan or even infused in rice alcohol.
From my limited experience, the ones growing on old tea trees are green and generally short. The ones growing on other trees tend to be brownish and are longer, they are much cheaper.
The difference in size must come from the fact that the expensive ones are harvested as soon as someone sees them, they don’t have time to grow tall.

Crab’s feet are not found in every ancient tea garden, the main growing areas are Jingmai, Hekai and Nannuo.
Last edited by bannacha on Jul 19th, '13, 13:19, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby 茶藝-TeaArt08 » Jul 19th, '13, 12:57

As always, thanks everyone for the feedback and links. I have a call in to some good friends, both of whom are TCM doctors to ask how they use and understand this plant as medicine. From the reviews I've read it seems some people do enjoy the flavor the "crab legs" bring to the puerh. I haven't yet sampled the disc.

MrEffendi wrote:Just look up "mithridatism." Drink a small amount of the crab stuff every day and gradually increase the dosage. Write down what toxic/psychoactive type effects the substance has and keep us posted. (Just joking. Don't actually do this.)


If my wife finds me naked in the street in a state of tea euphoria, walking sideways and clicking my hands like claws of course, we'll know I drank too much. :lol:
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Re: Puerh Information and Puerh Shame

Postby NPE » Sep 21st, '13, 11:46

I guess it is a bit late but I have just found a video about this on http://www.banateacompany.com/pages/puerh_videos.html. Scroll down to the second video from the bottom...
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