Tuesday, November 28, 2017

UPDATED 6 April 2018 - Special Offer for the Holidays - Puerh Sale

Happy Holidays

I have added 2 semi-age gushus, the raw material comes from older big trees. Both teas are from 2005 and produced by the Gan En Factory, the famous Ban Zhang teacake and Nannuo (a hidden gem) are listed below. These teacakes are old style gushu productions that I would highly recommend. There is a unique charm to these teas and if you have not tried a worthy gushu from this time period (before the exploitation and profiteering really took hold) it is worth exploring. These are teas that will provide you with a reference point and insight to the changes of gushu puerh during the last decade. The comparison of old and new is timeless. In this case it goes well beyond the age of the tea but touches on the practice of environmental exploitation, profiteering and new trends that have become hotly debated as being for better or worse. What is inescapable is that changes have occurred and that modern gushu puerh tea is no longer what it once was under today's increasing pressure of commercialism and capitalism on what was once difficult to access primitive land that supported naturally growing tea trees. Both these teas will take you back in time and provide you with a glimpse into the quality from the past. Experience the "old flavor" through the depth, the fullness and richness in taste, aroma and feel of these teas.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Tea Group - Vertical Tasting of Ban Zhang (2005-2013)

Photo credit goes to Ty Pip. See Facebook group post for complete listing

Last Sunday a group of tea enthusiasts gathered to share and learn from one another under the theme of Ban Zhang. Ban Zhang stands as one of the most famous regions in Yunnan Province for producing puerh tea. The moniker “King of Tea” is bestowed to Ban Zhang tea for its strong and powerful character. An article titled “Liquid Gold, Exploring Ban Zhang Tea by Wang Hau, Lou Ying Tin, Wu De” referenced the astounding prices that the region’s raw materials command in the tea market.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

1980s CNNP Special Production (Big Tree)

"China National Native Produce & Animal By-Products Import & Export Corporation - Yunnan Tea Branch" (CNNP) - An old teacake made from gushu (big tree) is a rare treasure that has become increasingly hard to find in the age tea market.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

1990s Private Production (Light Wet Stored)

Bringing out the 1990s Private Production (Light Wet Stored) from storage. This mid to late 90s tea is distinctive in the way that the wet storage conditions was managed to coexist with the raw characteristics of the tea.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Tea Auctions – The Value of Antique Tea

L: 1910s Song Pin Hao, M: 1950s Red Label, R: 1950s Liu An Tea Basket – Understanding the Chinese market and the human element allows us to see the value of antique tea. (Source of photos from L & H Auction Hong Kong)

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Tea Auctions – The Rising Tide of Capitalism

The impact of tea auctions have elevated prices in the category of antique tea. This rising tide of capitalism has spread ripple effects far and wide through the market for old tea.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

In Pursuit of Tea Appreciation

Drinking the best tea in the world does not guarantee the sense of enjoyment and appreciation. For the tea itself is only part of the answer the other half of tea appreciation rests with us.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Raw Material for Incense - Collecting Red Pine Resin

This split log of red pine has been kept in storage for approx. 10 years. Since that time the aroma of the resin has become more concentrated developing deep spicy notes.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Tea Session - 1970s Fuzhuan Brick (People’s Unification Tea)

Making inroads into this hefty 1970s Fu brick (3kg) reveals a higher concentration of Golden Flowers (aka Jin Hua). This mold is responsible for giving Fu tea much of its unique character.

Friday, February 10, 2017

The Power of Natural Incense

Pine wood heated over charcoal. The aroma from the natural resin is sweet and full of complexity. Inhaling deeply awakens the senses and infuses you with life.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Visiting an Ancient Salt Mine

During man’s early years salt was a vital ingredient for survival. It meant food could be preserved and thus made available during lean times. This importance made salt highly prized and the salt trade brought immense riches to merchants who would coin the saying “salt was more valuable than gold”.