|Puerh tea under ermentation|
Although the tea is readily consumable, it is best to keep the tea cakes in a cool dry place for a few years as the taste can improve further.
During those early days, the tea was packaged in boxes as shown below. If you can find the red package boxes, the tea is even better.
After many years of storage, the tea may appear a bit loose inside the box. When it is brewed, the tea soup will produce a deep reddish brown colour. Generally, it is of the opinion that fermented puerh tea will not improve in quality over time. But personally, I find that the tea actually taste better after further ageing in a cool dry place for sometimes. This is so as the harsh taste of the fermentation process will still linger in the tea if you consume it straight away.
I once bought a piece of so-called old tea repackaged by the shop with a label stating old vintage puerh tea. I usually buy one piece to try out first before buying the tea in bulk. To my disappointment, the tea turned out to be a newly made fermented tea brick. The vendor had tricked me into believing it was genuinely old puerh tea. Out of frustration, I chucked it aside. It was only after 10 years that I found the tea lying somewhere in the house. Then I decided to try it out. To my surprise, the tea had a nice vintage flavour and the taste was good. A sharp difference from the tea I bought ten years ago. I regretted for not keeping more of such tea as one tea brick can only satisfy me for a few weeks. That is the reason why I mentioned earlier you need to keep a substantial amount of good tea to last a longer time.