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-   -   Weird question. (https://www.foodbanter.com/tea/63451-weird-question.html)

Mydnight 23-06-2005 08:16 AM

Weird question.
 
Ok. I'm sure this problem has vexed many a tea drinker, so I figured
I'd throw the question for the public's scrutiny. How do you KNOW that
what you have is real or the quality that's been promised? I am
referring to the yixing pots, mostly, but this question can also stem
to pu'er or whatever else teas you can consider as easy to cheat with.


I'm really curious about your take on the yixing, though. Let's hear
it!


Scott Dorsey 23-06-2005 05:30 PM

Mydnight wrote:
Ok. I'm sure this problem has vexed many a tea drinker, so I figured
I'd throw the question for the public's scrutiny. How do you KNOW that
what you have is real or the quality that's been promised? I am
referring to the yixing pots, mostly, but this question can also stem
to pu'er or whatever else teas you can consider as easy to cheat with.


Either:
1. You become an expert and learn to distinguish between different
grades of things yourself. This is expensive and will probably
require buying a lot of bad products to find out what is bad about
them, and may require an apprenticeship from an expert.

2. You ask a recognized expert, and put your trust in him that he knows
what is real and what is not.

3. You buy from a recognized dealer, who is known in the general community
to know what they are talking about and to be honest and have good
products.

4. You stop worrying about it, and you decide that if you cannot tell the
difference that it is not a critical difference.

I'm really curious about your take on the yixing, though. Let's hear
it!


I don't know Yixing pottery at all, but I know audio equipment, and I
have used all four of the methods above in the past 30 years buying
audio gear.
--scott

--
"C'est un Nagra. C'est suisse, et tres, tres precis."

Mydnight 28-06-2005 02:42 PM

I agree totally about using your experience as the guide, but then, how
do you know that you haven't been rooked for 30 years? I recently
talked with a friend about some of his "excellent" tea, but after
trying, I had to tell him that he was cheated.


Mike Petro 28-06-2005 03:37 PM



Mydnight wrote:
I agree totally about using your experience as the guide, but then, how
do you know that you haven't been rooked for 30 years? I recently
talked with a friend about some of his "excellent" tea, but after
trying, I had to tell him that he was cheated.


The answer is that "you don't know". Unless you have the experience
to know mediocre from great you will never know if you have been
cheated or not. Unfortunately it is a lesson that is often learned the
hard way if ever learned at all. Until you have actually had
"great" tea you have no idea what it really is. Those who are
fortunate enough to have someone knowledgeable guiding them will be
exposed to great tea, others have to learn the hard way.

Since this business is so full of opportunistic middlemen and
merchants, and there is so much mysticism surrounding Eastern tea, and
there is such a lack of any real international standards, it all but
makes it impossible for a layman to do much better.

It is my understanding that there is work underway between some high
level Chinese and American businessmen to come up with some true
standards. Somehow I doubt that it will mount to much though as even
native Chinese customers get taken in the Chinese markets, why should
we think exports would be any better.

Mike
http://www.pu-erh.net


Michael Plant 29-06-2005 10:40 AM

[mydnght]
I agree totally about using your experience as the guide, but then, how
do you know that you haven't been rooked for 30 years? I recently
talked with a friend about some of his "excellent" tea, but after
trying, I had to tell him that he was cheated.


[Mike]
The answer is that "you don't know". Unless you have the experience
to know mediocre from great you will never know if you have been
cheated or not. Unfortunately it is a lesson that is often learned the
hard way if ever learned at all. Until you have actually had
"great" tea you have no idea what it really is. Those who are
fortunate enough to have someone knowledgeable guiding them will be
exposed to great tea, others have to learn the hard way.


[Michael]
Mike, very interesting indeed. I have someone quite knowledgeable to guide
me, and I've drunk some great teas. Curiously, some of these great teas have
not been to my liking. Conversely, some quite common teas have knocked my
socks off. The cost-benefit is hard to factor. Nonetheless, experience and
guidance will at least lead you to received wisdom.

[Mike]
Since this business is so full of opportunistic middlemen and
merchants, and there is so much mysticism surrounding Eastern tea, and
there is such a lack of any real international standards, it all but
makes it impossible for a layman to do much better.


[Michael]
Yup. And some of these opportunisitc middlemen are not unknown to us, eh?

[Mike]
It is my understanding that there is work underway between some high
level Chinese and American businessmen to come up with some true
standards. Somehow I doubt that it will mount to much though as even
native Chinese customers get taken in the Chinese markets, why should
we think exports would be any better.


[Michael]
The last in the world I want to see are international standards, especially
involving American businessmen. The standards will be developed from market
models that can only lead to mediocrity and higher prices for it. No, I go
with your original contention that a guide and experience combined will see
you through. Beware hapless traveler, the evil guru.

Michael


samarkand 02-07-2005 09:06 PM

Depends on what you are going in for. Are you going to make a great tasting
tea, or making tea in a good yixing pot? Real original clay is difficult to
obtain nowadays and most of what are available in the market - as we are
informed - are adulterated (in clay) pieces.

I go for making a good tasting tea first, and then go for a pot that will
carry out that purpose best. And that has to fall on one's experience with
playing around with pots. Try using different pots on the same tea, and
after a while you'll get the 'instinct' honed.

As for telling teas apart, it has much also to fall on experience and
personal preference. Pu'er is another tea that has seen many fakes in the
market, and some fakes I have tried actually tasted better than the original
production. So where do we go from there? To buy the original which is an
inferior tea to the fake, or the fake?

Experience and personal preference I guess play an important role in the
decision.

Danny

"Mydnight" wrote in message
oups.com...
Ok. I'm sure this problem has vexed many a tea drinker, so I figured
I'd throw the question for the public's scrutiny. How do you KNOW that
what you have is real or the quality that's been promised? I am
referring to the yixing pots, mostly, but this question can also stem
to pu'er or whatever else teas you can consider as easy to cheat with.


I'm really curious about your take on the yixing, though. Let's hear
it!





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