Just to add up on this and in case somebody else is interested on this teashop:
I've bought quite a few times as i've been exploring my options for puerh within the EU this year and took the (big) risk, here's my conclusions ( some will probably answer some of the initial questions ) :
- Puerhtea.eu is the European front of Teasenz. Apparently - from what i've been told on my conversations with the one person that seems to handle everything - they're based in HongKong ( their office at the very least ) .
- Their storage is incredibly dry, even a little bit too much. Fortunately didn't receive any dead tea plus my storage can fix cakes with light damage within a couple months.
- I've had some communication problems with my last ( 4th order ) but think it has to do with their mail server. The seller made all he could ( phone ) and then reached out through his personal mail, looks like their regular corporate mail no longer works properly.
- They overstep the price-rigging which is a gigantic red flag for me:
Placed around 4 orders and always tried to take full advantage of their discounts ( 20% off for orders around 500€ + free shipping , then apply reward points to my next order ) . On my very first order the prices were lower, just a few teas were out of stock.
Asked about some of their CNNP teas before placing my first order and was left with the impression they had no idea what they had on their hands ... which could be perfectly normal considering CNNP history ... but if you take into account their so-called 1999 CNNP Hong Yin was priced around 20 € ( ? not much further than that ) and just a few weeks later it was removed and marked as it was sold at some hundred euros, then re-listed at 70€ ( with a special temporary "discount" that would allow you to buy it for just 59€ or similar ) ... then things start to turn weird.
They had some of those Dr. Puer Nannuo sold out at around 19€ and after my first order was offered some of those that "unexpectedy were still around"... at twice that price.
Almost everything i bought increased prices once i ordered it creating a strange impression. I even dared to buy a second cake of their Xiaguan T8663 and they raised it again, it's like every sale reinforces their faith on what they have.
Have been checking this site since february 2020 and only kept noticing sudden & hard to justify pricing. On some cases those raises are combined with their "special sales" ( raise first, reduce later ) . Needles to say their so-called Lao Ban Zhang seems sketchy as hell ( first listed at 89.99€, shortly afterwards marked as sold out, now it's 110€ ... not really sure if they really sell some of their teas or they just keep moving it to be honest )
The important part: what about their teas ? it's just regular factory tea, nothing exceptional, none of 'em are worth paying more than 35€ although their goals seems to be to take advantage of the new situation with EU customs and sell 'em for more than they are really worth.
Some quick notes i shared on other forum:
Most of the teas i tasted had "smoke" on it.
One of the most interesting ones was the purple caicheng mini-cake; not "amazing", not "spectactular" but interesting enough, not smoked. Whatever the case, this one should be available elsewhere ( probably cheaper as well ) , i think one member of the Discord communi-tea talked at length about it.
Out of their three CNNP cakes found the 2011 version to be the most interesting... because it was the only one that didn't taste of smoke. "Interesting" as in "drinkable" and "enjoyable" to a point, not outsanding .
2007 Tian Fu Xiang : this is probably a very personal thing; it has an incredibly strong tobacco taste... probably intentional... for it creates a strong and surprisingly huigan effect afterwards. Problem is i personally can't stand tobacco, so there's a chance some people might even like this one... and also a chance somebody might find this one dirty chip on taobao, aliexpress or somewhere else.
2013 Foyuan Fo Hai Qing : surprisingly ... it's remarkably "silky" compared to all their other offerings; not outstanding, not great, but it's better than other teas. Paid around 35€ for it with that 20% applied minus reward points.
Wouldn't spend much more than ( around 35€ ) that on any cake from this store, if you have a higher budget... just go somewhere else, Teamania is dimensions ahead, same as Tea-Encounter ; you have a higher budget... then you have better shops with old puerh, liu bao, HK stored tea as well .
You have https://www.pu-erh.sk/
for high grade ( pricey ) sheng, goodtea.eu ( Czechia ) for all kind of loose leaf/liu an/some HK stored sheng and that Bulang Dragon column, Teamania ( Switzerland, they can ship from Germany if requested to avoid custom issues ) that has a wholesale account with Chen family/WuyiOrigin ( so it's worth checking their yancha ) plus their puerh lucky bee have been reviewed by neutral teabloggers like John ( https://teaintheancientworld.blogspot.c ... y-bee.html
) ... and surely i'm forgetting about other options ( tea-encounter is there for the time being as well ) but in short: spend your money anywhere else unless you're desperate just for "some tea" .
And no, not particulary against this store, the customer service ( until their technical problems, can't really blame 'em ) was great & honest ( they really had no idea about those CNNP... they didn't make false claims ), unlike KingTeaMall... if you buy a particular cake that was priced lower than they would have wanted ( bought that Xiaguan shou for 19€ on my first order ) they'll honor your purchase ( John Hou in my experience is willing to start a war over such thing, even if you buy 130 cakes on your first order, even if the prices of some of those cakes were to his advantage ) , the terms for discounts, points, etc... are clear & upfront.... it's just the heavy price rigging that kill this shop, their teas aren't that great ( not the best factory cakes, there's way better options out there ) , the moment they aim to establish their teas on a higher price-range ... well... there's simply better options for your money ( fortunately ) .