Dear audience, my new article is coming now. This time, firstly, please enjoy a super nice video that would help you to distinguish the different tea types. Then, read an article that talk about how to choose Puer tea. I met a friend who is a Puer tea lover last week and I was so surprise to see he took two pieces of Puer tea from China. Wow, I met a bosom friend in Chicago. Interesting!
Smell the tea. Good pu-erh tea should smell clear and distinctly “tea-ish”. Depending on the age, you may detect smoky or woody aromas. The tea should not have odd odours, and it should not smell moldy. Tea absorbs smell rather easily; thus, if improperly kept, the tea can pick up funny smells from anything: cooking smells, spices, etc.
Notice the tea’s appearance. Very ancient green pu-erh tea cakes should look reddish. Newer pu-erhs will be more greenish, but they will never look pure black. The tea cake should not have white/yellow dots which might be mold or yeast forming. When buying expensive tea cakes, it’s generally preferred for the cakes to be whole, without large cracks. Sometimes, people might sample expensive tea cakes by using a knife to scrape the centre of the depression behind the tea cake, flaking a few leaves off. This is seldom noticed, but be aware that you’ve lost a bit of tea if your cake has been sampled.
Do a taste test. This can only come with experience and more exposure to pu-erh tea. Purchasing samples from pu-erh tea museums can allow one to taste teas of different ages, enabling people to distinguish what’s good.