I was in Guangzhou last week and made time to meet my tea drinking group during one afternoon. One of the tea buddy had bought an 80s liu bao tea to our tea drinking session.
This liu bao tea was made in the 80s and I think it was meant for export outside China. There was, on the box, a panel in English explaining liu bao tea. My tea buddies told me, that during the 70s and 80s, liu bao tea was the main staple tea for the Guangdong and Hong Kong tea drinkers. Pu erh tea only gained popularity from the early 90s.
Liu Bao tea is a black tea that is fermented for 2-3 months (like shou/ripe pu erh) before it is packed for sale. Larger quantities of liu bao are also packed in large bamboo baskets weighing up to 25kg and some of these baskets even found their way to Ipoh, Malaysia for the Chinese workers who were working the tin mines there.
Back to this tea. This liu bao was manufactured by Hengxian Tea Factory. This tea is very aromatic and there was a pronounced woody scent in the tea. Very mellow and smooth, the tea easily brewed up more than 10 good infusions.
You will have noticed from the pix that there are different teacups in this tea drinking session. My friends and I normally have our own teacups when we meet for tea. And…..my teacup is the biggest one. I must remember to bring a smaller one next time.