‘Resting’ Yancha

Semi-oxidized tea
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MmBuddha
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Location: England

Mon May 14, 2018 7:18 am

Most of my (minimal) understanding of tea storage etc. relates to puerh. I’ve always heard it’s best to allow a cake to rest and acclimatise for a week or so after shipping, and have personally noticed sample packs seeming to improve if opened and allowed to air briefly, then sealed again and left for a few days, or at least this has seemed to be the case for humid teas.

In the past with yancha, I believe I’ve noticed the tea improving as I’ve worked my way through the bag, suggesting that the regular brief opening and closing had some positive effect, but I haven’t done any proper comparisons and had better reserve judgment for now. I gather in China yancha is often preferred in sealed single-serving packs, which would seem to run counter to my impressions.

I recently placed a larger yancha order than I previously have, and want to get the best from them when I begin trying them later this week. Is it advisable to rest yancha for a short while after it arrives, and if so, how should I go about it? The teas are currently sealed and unopened. I’d considered opening then quickly resealing the packs, but no idea if this will help. I suppose it doesn’t make much difference from the second or third session on (i’ll be opening them regardless), I’m just curious if you guys have an approach to resting yancha when it arrives.

Thanks for your help.
Last edited by MmBuddha on Mon May 14, 2018 8:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
.m.
Posts: 104
Joined: Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:26 pm

Mon May 14, 2018 8:08 am

Putting a certain portion into a smaller jar and sealing the rest might be the way to go.
The main point of sealing would be to protect some more delicate notes and freshness, and to protect from humidity.
On the other hand, and in contrary with usual recommendations, I've had very similar experiences to yours, where I often enjoy roasted oolongs better after some period of closed but unsealed storage. Often after a couple years, which would be a time when the tea had already lost its freshness but hasn't developed any aged notes yet. It might be that the tea mellows out a bit, which makes it less sensitive to brewing parameters. But i'm talking about mid-price-range teas. Different considerations might apply to high quality stuff.
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ShuShu
Posts: 268
Joined: Mon Dec 04, 2017 9:36 pm
Location: New York

Mon May 14, 2018 9:05 pm

MmBuddha wrote:
Mon May 14, 2018 7:18 am

In the past with yancha, I believe I’ve noticed the tea improving as I’ve worked my way through the bag, suggesting that the regular brief opening and closing had some positive effect, but I haven’t done any proper comparisons and had better reserve judgment for now. I gather in China yancha is often preferred in sealed single-serving packs, which would seem to run counter to my impressions.
I think that the roasting (especially when it is med-high) makes yancha more "resilient" comparing to pu-erh. Though, very bad climate can certainly harm it.
Much of the yancha I drink comes in single servings bags, though even with those that come in bigger bags I haven't felt any improvement through time. Having said that, It does take me a while to learn a tea and brew it better, so perhaps your experience can be explained by simply getting use to a tea or learning to brew it better... :-)
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tealifehk
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Sat May 19, 2018 6:25 am

If an oolong has been recently roasted, six to eight months of airtight storage can make a huge difference! And then aged oolongs are totally a thing. I have access to 90s dahongpao and shuijingui and it is incredible!
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