Fermented puerh, also called shu cha or cooked puerh, is a very dark tea which has gone through a strong fermentation process in its production. Following the industrial method developed in Yunnan in the 1970s, the tea leaves are sprayed with water and then covered by tarps under which they are going to develop their typical dark aspect within a few weeks. Initially, shu cha tried to imitate the traditional Hong Kong refining but using a quicker, more industrial and controlled way. This type of puerh has changed a lot: since early 2000, contemporary shu cha has become a distinct family of puerh with its own taste. Fermented puerh is a very round tea, with almost non-existent bitterness or astringency. It can develop warm, dark, woody, and thick liquor aromas, sometimes evoking fruit or dried fruit, or touches of mushrooms, moss, earth, or lichen.
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