Looking deeper into Chinese Black Teas
Recently I read an article on puerh tea in Time magazine that talked about investing in puerh tea, but there are many other teas worth investing in. Then, I began to think about all the other tea in the black tea category; by black tea I mean tea that has been fully fermented. In this category there are three well known teas: of course Puerh, but also Liu Bao, and Liu An. I will introduce the teas in this post and then follow with three more posts about each tea in detail.
The Chinese black tea category is defined as tea that is fully fermented. For the purpose of this post I will leave out the green puerh and younger puerh and focus on cooked and aged puerh.
People wonder what are the varietal, processing, and packaging differences between these three teas because not much is known or written about them.
Liu Bao 六寶 is a tea grown in Guangdong province 廣東省. This tea is produced in an area outside of Guang Xi 廣西 called Wu Chau 梧州. Liu Bao has been produced for over 200 years. This tea is aged like puerh: it is smooth and with age the tea aroma changes to camphor, pine, or beetle nut aroma. This is a great alternative to puerh because it has all the aroma, smoothness, and chi of puerh, but without the “barnyard” quality because of it's unique processing.
Liu An 六安 is from An Hui province 安徽省. This tea is produced in an area called Liu An 六安. The most famous brand for this tea is Shun Yi Sun 孫義順. Many people think Liu An area only makes green tea, but this is a special tea that is fermented.
Puerh 普洱 is a tea grown in Yunnan Province 雲南省. There are many locations, brands, formulations, shapes, and sizes of this tea. We can talk more about it in the post about puerh tea which will be posted in a couple of weeks.
The obvious difference between these teas is the location place that it is grown, but there is more to it than that. In the following post we are going to talk about each teas varietal, processing and packaging in more depth so stay tuned.