Amongst White Clouds
I have always loved that title, the name of a documentary about hermit monks in China. Here standing on top of a mountain at San Lin She, at 2000 meters (we brought an altimeter!) and with clouds breezing quickly by, with a strong gale and a dramatic sunset, I can’t think of a better place to spend eternity as a hermit. Of course, some one will have to bring me some propane to heat my water...
High Mountain Royal Courtesan
Mrs Su, our favorite woman tea producer, surprised us this visit with a new tea that was just produced, but have never been tasted by anyone. This tea has never been produced before, and why? the leaf hoppers famous for creating such teas as Taiwan Beauty and Royal Courtesan, actually flew high enough to attack the leaves at 1700 meters at San Lin She, producing the first ever High Mountain...
How to cheat your customers II
Sebastian Beckwith, who has logged enough miles visiting tea regions to get to the moon, decided to pretend to be on location. The photo was taken at a painted mural at Tung Ting depicting the complete processing of oolongs. This joke was funny only to us; sadly, most tea merchants in the U.S. have never been to any tea regions, but with a little help from stock photos and Photoshop, they sure can...
The next stop after the phenonmenal stop at the home of Taiwan Beauty was to the land of bamboo. Specifically, we stopped into Bamboola, where some of the most ingenous and beautiful teaware, furniture, and puzzle boxes were designed and made. Watch out, the puzzle boxes can wreck you and make your hair turn white, warns the owner and creator of Bamboola. Our happy tour group of 10 eagerly dug...
At what point in one’s tea drinking life, when one says, enough, this tea is far too ridiculously good and I can not live this down ever again? For today, I grew afraid that after drinking the 2nd place Taiwan Beauty winner, I might have to quit drinking tea, for fear that nothing will ever compare again. Once ridiculed as ‘pong fong cha’, or bullshit tea, this oolong invented in...
A time capsule
Here in Wenshan, Mr. Lee, our Baochong farmer, keeps bees and collects the tea seeds to crush for oil. The bees will harvest the pollen from the tea flowers and they will be particularly sweet this year. The tea flowers were plentiful and one can suck on the pollen, like honeysuckle. Mr. Chen makes his Jia Long Oolong, and his wife deep fries some super delicious tea leaf tempura and makes a wild...
Jia Long, the good dragon tea
Mr. Chen calls his invention ‘Jia Long’, or the good dragon tea. It was made GABA tea style, oxidized without oxygen. Exactly how it’s made is unknown, as he is hoping to obtain a patent some day. In any case, after knowing him for 3 years, he has finally decided to let us visit his farm. It’s about quality, he said, not quantity. He barely fertilizes his bushes ,...