My first taste of Pu-Erh

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

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Dec 23rd 09 6:12 pm
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Re: My first taste of Pu-Erh

by apache » Dec 23rd 09 6:12 pm

GongFu wrote:Shipping from the UK was quite reasonable, I've got a few on the way. Thank you for the recommendation.

I did a rinse, 10 second, 20 second, 30 second, 40 second infusion my last go. Definitely a lighter flavor, less overpowering earthy taste. This may have also been attribute of the tea as well 'Yi-Chang Hao "Yunnan Chi Tse" Song-Charactered'... Reminded me of something, maybe I have had Pu before, perhaps in Taiwan...

Thank you for the help everybody!
Let me know what do you think of the tuo cha when you got it. You will find that it is lighter than 100g, as tea aged, it tends to become lighter.

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Dec 23rd 09 6:50 pm
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Re: My first taste of Pu-Erh

by apache » Dec 23rd 09 6:50 pm

oldmanteapot wrote:
apache wrote:Yes, brewing technique is important to bring out the best of any teas, but IMHO, this only a mean of itself. I think it is more important to develop the pu'erh palate. Use myself as an example, after I was in HK for two weeks recently and tasted many different pu'erh teas, my concept about pu'erh changed completely. If I started my collection again, it would be very different. I don't mean I would buy only every expensive teas, but what I mean is I would put much less emphasis on the "drink now" young sheng.
+1 :mrgreen:

You're finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.... hehehe.. :D
Yes, I begin to see the light ...

My preference for drinking pu'erh is as the followings, if money is no objection:

Dry storage aged sheng
Wet storage aged sheng
Good quality shu
Young "drink now" sheng
Young "age-able" sheng (you have to be a very harden tea drinker to drink this!)
Low quality shu (I would not go there)

I think young "drink now" sheng tastes rather thin and lacking substance or it would be too astringent to drink. I believe most of my young sheng collection (produced in the last 3 or 4 years) are "drink now" sheng and I don't expect they will age well. More likely, after 10 or more years they will taste flat. I think I only have a few cakes are age-able and they are made before 2005. There is big different in term of taste between cakes made before 2005 and after 2005. I would really like to find more young age-able cakes, but they seem rather elusive this day.

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Dec 23rd 09 11:00 pm
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Re: My first taste of Pu-Erh

by nonc_ron » Dec 23rd 09 11:00 pm

TomVerlain wrote: rinse for as long as it takes to pour water in and pour it out. Let it sit for a minute or so leaves open up.

I find second, third and fourth infusions are generally best.

Some folks might even let the 20th sit over night to get that last bit of sweet, sweet leaf out.

your mileage may vary.
Very well said. 2++
I couldn't have said to better. (On one of my good days) :D
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Re: My first taste of Pu-Erh

by GongFu » Dec 24th 09 1:34 am

apache wrote: Dry storage aged sheng
Wet storage aged sheng
Good quality shu
Young "drink now" sheng
Young "age-able" sheng (you have to be a very harden tea drinker to drink this!)
Low quality shu (I would not go there)
Well, after the toucha's and my samples run dry I might try some loose aged sheng. What is an example of good quality shu? Will shu from 2008 taste or more less the same as shu from 1988?

I guess the other thing is I anticipate this replacing my AM coffee, I'm not sure I'd have time for 3-4 infusions, so maybe I'll get something good for weekends and something loose for every-day.

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Re: My first taste of Pu-Erh

by TomVerlain » Dec 24th 09 4:24 am

young sheng has more of coffee type caffine kick (IMHO). You can brew several infusions and just add them together. I find too much young sheng on an empty stomach not so good, but that depends on my particular constitution.

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Re: My first taste of Pu-Erh

by Proinsias » Dec 24th 09 4:40 am

Shu from 1988 is unlikey to taste like shu from 2008. It might not undergo quite the change that sheng does but it does improve with age.

I think about 5 years for shu should be good. I've got some 2005 Menghai golden needle that's lovely.

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Dec 24th 09 10:16 pm
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Re: My first taste of Pu-Erh

by apache » Dec 24th 09 10:16 pm

GongFu wrote:
apache wrote: Dry storage aged sheng
Wet storage aged sheng
Good quality shu
Young "drink now" sheng
Young "age-able" sheng (you have to be a very harden tea drinker to drink this!)
Low quality shu (I would not go there)
Well, after the toucha's and my samples run dry I might try some loose aged sheng. What is an example of good quality shu? Will shu from 2008 taste or more less the same as shu from 1988?
I'm still have much to learn about pu'erh, I think there are many others on this forum are more qualify than myself to give you advise on this. As you asked, here is my 2 pence worth of opinion, please don't blame me if I get it wrong.

A good shu should be similar to aged sheng in term of mouth feel, but it would not and never will be as magnificent as aged sheng in term of aroma. The amount of fermentation should be 'appropriate' and should not go over. Someone told me that tea with excessive amount of fermentation is called dead tea, as this tea will not improve over time. Good shu will improve through storage in 'correct' environment, but the scope of transformation will be much limited when compare with young 'age-able' sheng. There will always be some residue taste of fermentation, however, it should not be overwhelming.

I think this may be a candidate of a good shu:
http://www.yunnansourcing.com/store/pro ... oduct=1009

As I haven't tried it yet, I cannot say for certain, but I heard a lot of good thing about this. This will be on my next shopping list.

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Jan 2nd 10 8:17 pm
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Re: My first taste of Pu-Erh

by cha-fu » Jan 2nd 10 8:17 pm

GongFu wrote:What is an example of good quality shu? Will shu from 2008 taste or more less the same as shu from 1988?.
Generally speaking, 1998 Shu will taste much much better than 2008 Shu, assuming 1998 Shu was kept in a proper storage (clean and sufficient RH/air flow). 2008 Shu likely has strong wòdūi (渥堆, "wet piling" in English) aroma and is not recommended for consumption now.

10 yr old (light) wet stored Shu should be fine for immediate consumption. Dry stored Shu will take a bit longer to age/mellow. Tea cakes/bricks should look clean and no sign of mold or moldy smell. Some ~10 yr old Shu's gave me stomach ache or dry throat and those teas need a few more years to ease off edges. 15+ yr old Shu would be a better choice, IMHO.

If you are not sure what to try first, try sticking to 15+ yr old popular CNNP Shu's, like 7581 (brick from Kunming), 7572 (cake from Menhai), 7562 (brick from Menhai), and 7663 (tuocha from Xiaguan). Note that 7581 is actually a Shu-Sheng mix (majority in Shu), but some considers it's a Shu.

Finally, drinking aged Shu (15+ yr old) is very good in winter time. The smoothness of aged Shu makes you feel warm. And you can drink it all day without worry about upset stomach. :D

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Re: My first taste of Pu-Erh

by teabone » Jan 10th 10 4:42 am

I've never had a true "aged'" pu erh? Can someone recommend a good one to start with?

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Re: My first taste of Pu-Erh

by moosix » Jan 18th 20 10:38 pm

GongFu: Glad you liked it, I recommend preparing this tea gong fu style

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Re: My first taste of Pu-Erh

by BenHK » Feb 4th 20 5:30 pm

can search my post and reply about PuErh tea :)