Today on my way to the library, I noticed this little shop that is literally right next door.Â It’s a 30 seconds walk from my house to this place, but since I haven’t been in Shanghai that long, and since I just usually walk right past it… I never paid attention.
This is the kind of store through which most of the t eas in China are sold.Â He posts the prices of the main attractions on the board to the left of his store.Â On it it reads:
Yuqian (Before rain) Fried Green — 14 yuan/jin (500g)
Jasmine — 15 yuan/jin
New Longjing — 30 yuan/jin
Oolong tea — 42 yuan/jin
Huangshan Fried Green — 7 yuan/jin
Huangshan Maofeng — 38 yuan/jin
Huangshan Silver Hooks — 18 yuan/jin
Yunnan Maofeng — 25 yuan/jin
New Maofeng — 18 yuan/jin
As should be obvious… the prices are very pedestrian.Â This is apparently last year’s prices, with this year’s being slightly higher.Â Nevertheless, it’s… cheap.
I went up to the counter (you can’t really walk in — too small) and looked at the teas on display.Â It’s typical of stores that sell green tea to have them on little white dishes with a price tag next to the tea.Â You can see for yourself what they all look like, and the different looks that go with the different prices can be quite instructive.Â Somehow in Beijing they don’t do this.
I picked out a Yunnan green to try.Â I bought 50g of it for 5 kuai.Â I think I overpaid, and if I had gotten the same thing at a tea market, it’ll probably be 2 kuai or some such.Â But heck…
The Yunnan green actually smells and looks a lot like some of the maocha I’ve had recently, but the leaves here are a bit smaller.Â I will really need to try it out to see exactly what this Yunnan green is made of… and to try to age it and see what turns out from this green.Â It will be interesting.