Choosing a tea is a pleasure. We look at it, we smell it, we touch it and we taste it. If we gurgle when we drink it, here is our 5 senses united. However, even when you are in China and speak the language of the country, finding the teas that satisfy all your sensory organs is not an easy task. Admiring, smelling, stroking, tasting and hearing tea is always possible with those found in bulk. There are excellent ones.
Others, such as rare and precious teas, of high or less high quality, must be purchased before any contact, even visual.
Unless you know exactly what you are looking for and go to the estate, buying a tea is like finding the perfect wine.
Just like our grape varieties, we find teas in different guises, at all prices, with subtleties and palates that vary according to the terroirs, the years and the know-how.
Flower Shou Puer of 1 kg, Plate of very old Black tea, Sheng/Shou Puer 1990-2020, 5 to 500€,
1 cake 2020 Shou Puer 357 g, 2500 €
As a general rule, and especially for Sheng Puer (raw) teas, it is best to buy them that year and age them. Aged teas are more expensive and hard to find. They may in particular resemble each other to be mistaken. Similar looking teas can even be opposite in taste.
A triple rule: know the person, trust him and taste them.
Below are some examples of Shou Puer Cha Zhuan (cooked tea from Yunnan)
2005 Sweet and pleasant €5 2005 No interest €13
2002 Bad €17 1992 Fantastic €25
2005-2012 Fair €35-65 95-2011 Fair €50-85 Fair
88-95 Good €85-125 Pleasant 1998 Extraordinary €155
It is essential to know their method and place of production as well as that of ageing. The best is like a good bottle not to move from the cellar.
Mobility is granted if suitable.
For example, aging teas in Hong Kong are very famous.
Ours are also aging there just like in Shenzhen, where I live, in Fujian and Yunnan too.
That's why I'm doing this, it's my pleasure, to clear the way for you.
Apart from the aged bricks and cakes that have fermented, all the teas chosen together here come from controlled and responsible agriculture, without pesticides or fertilizers.