Pu’erh teas are aged and fermented. These aged teas are revered throughout Asia for their medicinal benefits, which range from curing hangovers to reducing cholesterol.
Pu’erh tea is very smooth in taste, and can be even darker than black tea. This is a naturally fermented tea, and, if stored properly, the older the tea, the better the flavor. Black Pu’erh teas contain about 60–70 milligrams of caffeine per 8 oz cup, and Green Pu’erh yields about 30–40 milligrams of caffeine for the same sized serving.
Preparation: Requires pure water at boiling point (212° F).
Process: Pu’erh tea is processed through special fermentation by using the semi-fermented green tea of Yunnan large leaf tea. It is black or brown in color. This tea undergoes a secondary fermentation process that takes 6 months to a year, during which the tea is contained in a warm, humid environment, allowing beneficial bacteria and fungal microflora to flourish. The more aged Pu’erh tea is mellow and gives a sweet taste in mouth after drinking.
Health Benefits: This is an ideal health drink. It can cut through grease and cholesterol, help digestion, warm you, help produce saliva and shake thirst, dispel the effects of alcohol, and refresh one’s mind. Pu’erh tea has also been shown to lower triglyceride and cholesterol levels in the body.
Origins: Grown exclusively in and around the county of Pu’erh in Yunnan Province, China, the leaves are mildly sweet, with an aroma reminiscent of autumn leaves.
Green or “Sheng”: (also called raw, un-cooked, green health tea)
Black or “Shou”: (also called ripe, cooked tea)