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#1: Ten Ren Lung Ching "Oil Slick"?!

Posted on 2006-07-11 17:53:03 by dominictiberio

OK, now this is strange, I bought some 2006 Spring picked Lung Ching
from Ten Ren in NYC, and have noticed an odd occurance with it. At work
I brew in a white porcelain mug with a People's Brew Basket (nylon mesh
infuser) and every time I get what appears to be floating "plates" of
sludge on the surface of the water. It also leaves a ring of light
brown around the mug at the initial brewing level. I've tried different
mugs, infusers, water temps, water, etc. and every time it looks like
the Juan Valdez spilled on top of my cuppa. What the heck is this? I've
seen some really fresh tea's have a bit of this, but nowhere near this
level. Anyone?

- Dominic
Drinking: Lipton green label DJ, hold the sludge.

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#2: Re: Ten Ren Lung Ching "Oil Slick"?!

Posted on 2006-07-11 23:07:53 by DogMa

As a chemist, I've seen this phenomenon many times when a small amount
of an oily phase separates from an aqueous liquid. The oily phase is
usually near its freezing point, contains dissolved material near
saturation, or is otherwise nearly solid.

You mention that it's an LJ. I believe that these are always wok-fried
to get that unusual leaf form. Sohe slick is probably lard, though
perhaps just peanut oil, with tea chemicals dissolved in it.

-DM


Dominic T. wrote:
> OK, now this is strange, I bought some 2006 Spring picked Lung Ching
> ... what appears to be floating "plates" of
> sludge on the surface of the water. It also leaves a ring of light
> brown around the mug at the initial brewing level.

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#3: Re: Ten Ren Lung Ching "Oil Slick"?!

Posted on 2006-07-12 01:09:02 by dominictiberio

DogMa wrote:
> As a chemist, I've seen this phenomenon many times when a small amount
> of an oily phase separates from an aqueous liquid. The oily phase is
> usually near its freezing point, contains dissolved material near
> saturation, or is otherwise nearly solid.
>
> You mention that it's an LJ. I believe that these are always wok-fried
> to get that unusual leaf form. Sohe slick is probably lard, though
> perhaps just peanut oil, with tea chemicals dissolved in it.
>
> -DM

Thanks, I never thought of that. Like I said I had noticed a tiny bit
of oil/sludge before on really freshly manufactured greens of different
types but it was never terribly bad and I always attributed it to the
freshness of the tea and the natural oils coming out, never due to the
actual process. I'll try to take a photo of what it looks like tomorrow
just for everyone to see because in over 8 years this is a first for
me.

thanks again,
- Dominic

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#4: Re: Ten Ren Lung Ching "Oil Slick"?!

Posted on 2006-07-12 14:27:54 by Mydnight

Dominic T. wrote:
> OK, now this is strange, I bought some 2006 Spring picked Lung Ching
> from Ten Ren in NYC, and have noticed an odd occurance with it. At work
> I brew in a white porcelain mug with a People's Brew Basket (nylon mesh
> infuser) and every time I get what appears to be floating "plates" of
> sludge on the surface of the water. It also leaves a ring of light
> brown around the mug at the initial brewing level. I've tried different
> mugs, infusers, water temps, water, etc. and every time it looks like
> the Juan Valdez spilled on top of my cuppa. What the heck is this? I've
> seen some really fresh tea's have a bit of this, but nowhere near this
> level. Anyone?
>
> - Dominic
> Drinking: Lipton green label DJ, hold the sludge.

Sounds to me like you possibly bought some 2005 re-fired, oiled tea.
TianFu (ten ren) here is notorious for marketing old tea and claiming
it's new. They usually put oil on the leaves to preserve the tea so it
can be sold for a longer period of time. Spring LJ becomes stale
quickly, even if it's put in air tight bags.

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#5: Re: Ten Ren Lung Ching "Oil Slick"?!

Posted on 2006-07-12 14:36:53 by dominictiberio

Mydnight wrote:
> Sounds to me like you possibly bought some 2005 re-fired, oiled tea.
> TianFu (ten ren) here is notorious for marketing old tea and claiming
> it's new. They usually put oil on the leaves to preserve the tea so it
> can be sold for a longer period of time. Spring LJ becomes stale
> quickly, even if it's put in air tight bags.

It is a fairly real possibility I guess. I mainly drink greens, and
once a year (normally a bit earlier in the year than now though) I will
buy a fresh LJ. I will be highly disappointed if indeed that is the
case, as my opinion of Ten Ren was mighty low to begin with... it's
hard to imagine it being lower. @$120/lb. it is disgraceful. The thing
about it was that when I checked it out, it appeared to be about right
by my senses... however now after closer inspection it does seem a bit
of a almost unnoticeable "coating" on the leaves. The flavor is
actually pretty good though, nothing off-putting there, I'm going to do
a quick rinse of some leaves and brew another cup to see what happens.

- Dominic

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#6: Re: Ten Ren Lung Ching "Oil Slick"?!

Posted on 2006-07-13 17:24:13 by Mydnight

It is a fairly real possibility I guess. I mainly drink greens, and
> once a year (normally a bit earlier in the year than now though) I will
> buy a fresh LJ. I will be highly disappointed if indeed that is the
> case, as my opinion of Ten Ren was mighty low to begin with... it's
> hard to imagine it being lower. @$120/lb. it is disgraceful. The thing
> about it was that when I checked it out, it appeared to be about right
> by my senses... however now after closer inspection it does seem a bit
> of a almost unnoticeable "coating" on the leaves. The flavor is
> actually pretty good though, nothing off-putting there, I'm going to do
> a quick rinse of some leaves and brew another cup to see what happens.

Ya, me and Tianfu have beef. Good pal of mine bought what would be a
sample size of some GaoShan tea from there and got ripped off by about
25g. They said it should have been 50g, but it wasn't. On top of
that, the price was unreasonably high. We took it back...we were
blamed because "that's the way it is."

I wouldn't spend more than a few bucks at Tianfu (ten ren), if that.

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