homecoming' of a Jingua Gongcha, a tea tribute to the emperor over 100 years ago and kept at the Palace in Beijing (now a museum). The tea looks very similar to my Jingua, don't you think?! And not only does it still look good, such old teas are getting better and finer with time. Beyond 100 years old puerhs give you a direct glimpse at tea paradise! Or so the legend goes...
How do we confirm that it's really so old? First, we can look at the packaging. The color of the paper is yellowish and has a certain old feel that is consistent with a 20 to 30 years range. This wrapper has no inscriptions, logo or anything. Why? Up to the 1988, Taiwan had an embargo on things coming from China. It was progressively lifted and puerh was slowly allowed (but Oolong still isn't). So, to import puerh in the 1980s, Taiwanese merchants would have the puerh repackaged with blank wrappers to get them through customs more easily. This wrapper therefore makes sense, but it makes confirming the identity of the tea more tricky. From the examination of this wrapper, we can also tell that the storage conditions (in Taiwan) were very clean and relatively dry: there are no brown tea stains on the paper.
When seen like this, it's extremely difficult to tell what kind of puerh it is or how old it is!
You can read the detailed tasting and more pictures in the boutique.