Emerald Thai Tea


Owes its flavors to oxidation levels between green & black tea.

Emerald Thai Tea

Postby Puerlife » Mar 28th, '14, 23:44

I know almost nothing about oolong but recently tasted some that I really liked in KL and Penang. When I arrived back at the Chiang Mai airport I saw a tea shop that I'd heard of so I dropped in and asked to try their best stuff. She had a gongfu set on the counter and loaded up a very small pot with two wooden scoops and it was good, the same taste as in Malaysia but weaker. But the Malaysian stuff was 250R per 100 grams while this stuff is only 1,500 baht for 200 grams or 1,800 baht for 300 grams. Does anyone have an opinion about this company's products? Just google the company name and search on Facebook and you'll find their contact info, including a google map to their retail shop on Tanon Maha Chai in Bangkok. The one I tried comes in a garish silver or gold tin such as you can see in a recent post on their FB page. It's not offered on their website. Thai name: Choke Chamroen Tea Company Limited
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby Tead Off » Mar 29th, '14, 01:15

Sounds much too overpriced. The best Thai oolongs usually sell for no more than 500/125g-150g.

You live up north. Why not take a day trip to Mae Salong and sample tea all day long, then decide what you want to buy? It's beautiful there, nice weather, Yunnanese food, and a great way to spend the day!
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby Puerlife » Mar 29th, '14, 01:28

I'm planning to do an overnighter after the smoke clears. When the smoke is bad here, it's even worse in Chiang Rai Province. The tea plantations are probably above it but I want to enjoy the drive, too. In another thread you wrote that you bought an oolong at 101, I think. Can you recommend any others? It might be another month before the smoke clears and I'd like to get some down my throat before then. Or maybe I'll just start with Emerald.
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby Tead Off » Mar 29th, '14, 03:57

You will see 101 when you first drive into Mae Salong on the left side. Then, it's seller after seller. It's hit or miss and then there are plenty of shops with various oolongs from different farms.

Asking people up there might help find some hidden gems. But a Thai oolong gem is not the same as a Taiwan oolong gem. :D The Long Feng Xia at Origin Tea is not duplicated anywhere in Thailand. Worth it to order this tea and forget about the rest. :D The drive and time is still worth it.
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby Puerlife » Mar 29th, '14, 11:30

Stop! :D I'm already blowing my budget on pu-erh and just need something less intense every other day or so. Japanese green tea is the most gentle solution, providing a nice calm and plateau of alertness that leaves no caffeine hangover the next day. I just thought I'd try to find a very green Thai oolong as a substitute because I like to go local when possible. I'm probably not ready to dive into the complex and expensive field of oolong yet.
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby Puerlife » Mar 31st, '14, 02:16

I went back to Emerald and bought a less expensive offering, ganon (soft stems?). 300 grams for 700 baht. It lasted five infusions in a 150ml glass gaiwan at 90c and later boiling, starting at about half a minute at going up to 90 seconds. I hope that's close to what I'm supposed to do. The taste is OK. Buzz? Not sure. I'm not very mindful today so other than caffeine not much.
Five years ago when I first went to Doi Mae Salong, I was searching for a replacement for Japanese tea so I always preferred the less roasted #12 to #17, but now it seems I clearly prefer Emerald's "mid-roasted" #17. But I suppose I should try Taiwanese tea before I make a general statement about preference.
Anyway, I have a question: How should I store this tea? It's in a foil bag closed tightly.
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby Tead Off » Mar 31st, '14, 10:50

air tight canister is bests.
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby bankung » Apr 2nd, '14, 03:55

Some high quality Thai oolongs are actually exported to Taiwan and being sold as Taiwanese oolongs. They should be quite good as some companies also hire Taiwanese masters to process the tea for them.
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby Puerlife » Apr 2nd, '14, 05:03

I’m new to oolong, indeed to puer as well. Today I had a good tea day with two oolongs which I’ve been told are not that good. The first is an oolong I bought in KL at the same shop that scammed me into buying some crappy puer, but I’ll save that story for another post. I paid 80rm (roughly 800 baht) for 100 grams. The second is a #17 from Emerald Thai tea, 300 grams for 700 baht. I drank very mindfully, determined to get all that I could out of them. I used two gaiwans and used enough tea that after a few infusions the leaves filled them. I alternated the two, and this helped me to slow down and be present rather than just gulp down cup after cup. Now I wish I’d taken notes, but at the time I didn’t think anyone would be interested in a newbie report about subpar oolongs. Well, this was probably my third session with each but was by far the best because I really paid attention to what was there and left behind all thoughts of what I might be missing. The Malaysian one was a darker roast, making the Thai one seem green by comparison although it is classified as a medium roast. Anyway, I got many infusions from both and despite the lack of qi other than the usual clearheaded energy really enjoyed the taste, and improved my skill at the same time.
Perhaps I’m repeating my experience with shu and sheng puer- I started out going newbie nuts over cheap shuo and didn’t even want sheng. Now, however, my palette tells me that sheng is where the adventure is, and while I still appreciate a bit of shuo, I need a better grade now. So I’m going to enjoy what is good enough for now, and move on to better stuff when my palette (and wallet) tell me to. :D
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby PurplePotato » Apr 2nd, '14, 13:49

Puerlife wrote:Well, this was probably my third session with each but was by far the best because I really paid attention to what was there and left behind all thoughts of what I might be missing.


This is a great thing to learn. You can spend a lot of $$ improving the quality of the tea you drink, but improving the awareness of the drinker is free :D

Also, I personally wouldn't recommend taking notes during a session. It can remove you from the moment, and you'll usually remember the important things afterwords anyways, and can write them down then if you like. (if you can't remember, it's probably not important :P)
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby Puerlife » Apr 3rd, '14, 00:49

+1 :)
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby Puerlife » May 18th, '14, 09:57

My wife and I did a daytrip to Mae Salong yesterday. The first place off the Mae Sai road is Choui Fong Tea Plantation (Wang Put Tan Co). It's a few clicks off the road and situated on top of a hill, very picturesque, although all the tea plants are no more than knee high. I bought there number 12 even though it's nothing special. It just tasted so fresh. My wife said a Thai soap opera was once filmed there. At 101 I should have bought their jasmine pearl tea which I quite liked but for some reason bought their ginseng tea instead. We also tried their gaba tea, which has a very mild sweet taste. Five years ago we got a personal tour of the Emerald Thai Tea factory but this day it wasn't open to the public and they sent us up the road to Mae Salong Villa, which has a restaurant and a tea corner where we tried some tea and had lunch. The Yunnan pork was quite salty but delicious and went very well with mantou, a puffy white breadlike thing. And tea salad as you can see. The waitress urged us to order it with canned fish so we did. The tea leaves looked raw! Their bitterness was not quite offset by the fish, lemongrass, onion, lime juice and chilli sauce and I'll pass next time.
We stopped at several other shops to try tea but nothing really held my interest. It was nice to see all the cheap gong fu sets, cha hai, gaiwans, kamjove easy brewers, etc because there is almost nothing like that available in Chiang Mai. It was a 14-hour trip with lots of driving so we couldn't dally at any one place. It was a beautiful day and a great way to spend a day.
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby ethan » May 18th, '14, 16:25

If you do that trip again, Puerlife, look for some Red Oolong. It is well oxidized w/o roasting. Mine came from Doi Tung. Glad you had a nice trip.
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby jayinhk » May 19th, '14, 10:51

I need to get up there; tickets to CM are dirt cheap from HK right now. :) While I doubt I'll find anything that can compare to good TW and Chinese oolongs, I bet it'll be a fun trip and that tea salad sounds really good.

My dad bought me some (overpriced) oolong in BKK a few years ago. Decent stuff and much sweeter and fruitier-tasting than anything I've had out of TW. I still have a fair amount of both. I only drink them on special occasions now since my dad passed last year.
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Re: Emerald Thai Tea

Postby Puerlife » May 20th, '14, 07:46

HI Ethan, I'll did see some packages of red oolong at one place but didn't ask to try it. I was in more of a trying than buying mode on this trip. I'll look for it next time.
Jay, if you come to Chiang Mai, do give me a shout. I love to meet teachatters. BTW, first flush is in February in these parts and the plantations seem to still have lots of fresh stock.
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