PS: These posts portray the opinions of the author. Strong they may be, always be aware “to each their own.” If you want to do things ‘wrong,’ do it wrong. Happy steeping!
Sipping & Slurping & Burping OH MY!
It came to my attention, long ago, that certain teas tended to make me burp… chiefly tieluohan, other rock teas, and phoenix wulongs, as well as a few red teas from Yunnan e.g., dianhong. I assumed, for the longest time, it was something in the tea. It was always obscure that tieluohan brought up some extra esophageal vapor. It is indeed rude, crude, and in all other ways… unacceptable to burp at a tea gathering, even when covering the mouth. But alas, the short high-pitched belching was often present, and my mind was in a state of utter dismay. New data recently came to my attention…
Original Hypothesis Broken?
I had thought it was some sort of fertilizer, microbial, or maybe nitrogen based. But perhaps it was something more substantial that brought upon such frequent eruptions of eructation. Or maybe the cultivar? No. After talking with a friend/farmer about this embarrassing matter, I learned that she uses the same growing and planting methods on her tieluohan bushes as she does the rest of her excellent quality bushes grown within the Wuyi reserve. So, I looked elsewhere.
The same disturbances were happening, with tieluohan, dancong, and dianhong. I have, and I was quite perturbed as over time tieluohan has become one of my favorite yancha and dancong is not only a favorite but a delicacy I can’t always afford to drink. Dianhong remains an outsider to me. Learning the farming practices of the tieluohan I drink, I delved into the dianhong. Not enough info was available to my eyes, fingers, and browser searches for me to figure out many things behind dianhong. Both the farming and processing methods of the places I buy from seemed to vary as much as the cultivar/variety did. Yet both brought upon gaseous stomach fumes. As for dancong… well, spending 5 or 6 days with a farmer up in Wudong village, I learned a lot about how hard it is to find real dancong in the USA, luckily, I was able to purchase a few KG of some of my favorite teas, the ones I could afford anyway.
Asking Other Drinkers
Continuing my search for understanding, I asked a few friends about this. My dear friend, who shall remain nameless (hint she has threatened to throw me off a cliff… twice), suggested that perhaps these burps were a way of settling my stomach. And so, I went back and tried the teas again. Another friend, a puer man, often says that it’s a sign of a healthy and comfortable tea.
Oh My! – George Takei style
I had never really paid attention to how these teas affected my gustation. Now with this in mind, I spent a bit closer attention to my stomach and gut. I did a few trials on both a full stomach and an empty one. What I discovered was quite alarming… These teas not only didn’t upset my stomach, but they were also all comforting with both an empty stomach and full… and the burps were still present.
A Credible Source?
My cousin was in town, she’s a nurse outside of Kansas City, MO. All it took was one burp in front of her… and all was explained. I asked her why, from certain teas, do I burp so much? She put on that one confused face that had hints of, “WOW, you’re ignorant.” And upset stomach wouldn’t result in “gastric tooting.” What I have is simply air in my esophagus. Why did I ask other people? I hypothesized it from the start.
Now I know that slurping very hot tea and taking air from both the top of the cup’s lip and the bottom of the cup’s rim is not as easy as I thought. Or not as easy to do AND be polite.
Can I Stop?
Now that I know the cause, I have tried to stop all in vain. Ah, the follies of life. I suppose I will burp my life away. 😉