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Pu-erh teas

Pu-erh teas are the best known form of dark tea and are considered one of China’s ten famous teas. Produced in Yunnan Province, pu-erhs are aged teas and so develop a unique character being complex and smooth.
Sheng pu-erhs from Yunnan province can take up to fifty years to mature and attract significant prices. Based upon pan-fired green teas which have been dried in the sun, the leaf is then pressed into ceramic moulds to form cakes and then aged in warm, humid conditions. Sheng pu-erhs tend to be sweetish with the characteristics of over-ripe soft fruit and honeycomb.
In the 1970s a light steaming process was developed in what is known as ‘cooked’ or shou pu-erhs to accelerate this process although the end result is more earthy.
Pu-erh teas tend to be smooth, complex and lower in caffeine. Caffeine levels reduce by some 70% over ten years. Time allows natural enzymes to break down polyphenols in the tea adding to their smoothness.
Pu-erh teas should be infused with water of the same temperature as black teas (95-100 degrees).
Pu-erhs are considered by some to be good for aiding weight loss.

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