I have not read this whole thread although I plan to.
Will someone please explain to me, how is it that pu erh is an "acquired taste" for many? I find it consistently more palatable and smooth than astringent unfermented teas*, and I have drunk many an abused pu erh - triple concentration, fishy, overbrewed, cheap quality, stale, etc. All good to me. When I was little the only tea I drank/had access to was pu erh because we would go to dim sum a lot, and I drank it just fine. Then as I got older I was introduced to other teas and I wondered why I disliked them so much. Perhaps I was always just drinking scorched tea made from shit municipal chlorinated water, but I can't imagine the dim sum places used anything but.
In general, the less oxidized the tea the less likely I am to like it. My second favorite tea is Assam Again, it's probably my lack of access to unchlorinated water that makes me intolerant to more delicate teas.
Not tryna sound like a snob here, far from it. I mean I drink pu erh with milk and call it bo lei au lait. See, I play with my food.