Pu’er tea is the specialty of Yunnan. It takes Yunnan large-leaf sun-cured tea leaves as materials. There are the fermented and unfermented teas. Tea made through natural fermentation is unfermented tea while that fermented artificially is fermented tea. And the unfermented tea could gradually turn into the fermented after a long-term natural fermentation. But it takes too long, usually about 5 to 8 years for “natural fermentation”. Both unfermented and fermented Pu’er teas are produced into diffused tea and condensed tea. And condensed tea is divided into square tea, Tuo tea, and round-shaped tea by shape.
Brewing difficulty: Easy
Best season to taste: Summer
Origin: Xishuangbanna, Pu’er and other places in Yunnan
Shape: tight strips with white fuzz, dark green color, the color turns brown with time passing by.
Liquid: bright and light green.
Aroma: thick and sharp.
Taste: raw, astringent, and irritant.
Brewed tea leaves: yellow-green, smooth and soft.
The fresh tea leaves should be stored in a natural way after harvest. Tea without fermented is unfermented tea whose quality is very fierce and irritating. The tea which is newly-made has a strong sense of astringency and its color is light or yellow green.
Water temperature: be sure to use boiling water because Pu’er tea is very coarse.
Tea sets: it’s better to use purple clay teapot or pottery and choose the pot with big abdomen to accommodate the thick tea soup.
Amount of tea: the aroma of unfermented Pu’er tea is very thick and sharp, so there will be some irritation to the stomach. You have to get accustomed to it at the beginning. Don’t put too many tea leaves.
Tea moistening: Pu’er moistening is necessary. If it is the tea stored for many years, then repeat for many times with boiled water. And the water must be flushing in order to wake up the tea and eliminate the smelly odor.
Six Tea Mountains
The famous “Six Tea Mountains” refers to the six ancient tea mountains of Yunnan tea or Pu’er tea located in the Dhai autonomy prefecture in Xishuangbanna. It includes Youle, Gedeng, Tibang, Mangzhi, Manzhuan, and Mansa tea mountains.
Fragrant and old raoma, taste thousands of years’ affection for Pu’er
Unfermented Pu’er tea is known as the “drinkable antique”. The most distinguishing quality is “the older, the more fragrant” from other tea. The unique quality and old aroma emerge in the process of fermentation storage. Generally speaking, the quality of unfermented Pu’er tea storing for 5 years is different from the initial quality of itself, yet it will take 8 years or even more time to get better flavor. There is an old saying in Yunnan that “the grandfather makes tea and the grandson drinks it”.