Twigs in Pu-erh teas

pu erh teaMost of the green tea drinkers will have developed this conception now that all premium green teas are made of the very young and tender leaves. Mature leaves and even worse twigs are considered to be a sign of ‘low quality’.

Pu-erh teas are however different. It is understood and believed that certain amount of twigs are beneficial for Pu-erh tea’s aging process for the following reasons:

  1. Pu-erh tea’s picking involves certain amount of young and mature leaves, having certain amount of twigs is therefore natural part of the picking and does not requires any additional work.
  2. Pu-erh twigs create air pockets within a cake, brick or Tuo to allow oxygen which is essential for its continuous fermentation process.
  3. Like all other stems, Pu-erh twigs are parts to supply the leaves with all the nutrients and have relatively higher level of sugar content. Aged and fermented, they enhance the pu-erh tea’s flavour by enhancing the sweet tone of the tea.
  4. Certain aged pu-erh teas can last up to 30 repeated infusions. Twigs and mature leaves play an important role in this.