Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest


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

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby edkrueger » May 28th, '13, 12:36

ethan wrote:That's funny, Ed. Thanks for the laugh.

:mrgreen:
User avatar
edkrueger
 
Posts: 1693
Joined: Jun 24th, '

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby David R. » May 29th, '13, 07:24

I have never ordered myself from Taiwan Tea Crafts, but I've heard excellent feedbacks from a very good friend of mine who is very much into taiwanese oolong. I should try it soon though.
User avatar
David R.
 
Posts: 1112
Joined: Oct 6th, '0
Location: France

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby tenuki » May 29th, '13, 14:36

edkrueger wrote:Oh tea expert... please find us worthy of your reviews and red ribbons.


I'm guessing you won't be getting a PM. :roll:
User avatar
tenuki
 
Posts: 2339
Joined: Oct 23rd, '
Location: Seattle Area

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby bagua7 » May 30th, '13, 03:20

I decided not to order since shipping ($20) is more expensive than the sample bag (25g @ $16). Too bad then.
User avatar
bagua7
 
Posts: 1213
Joined: Jul 21st, '

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby edkrueger » May 30th, '13, 14:10

Yeah, I looked at it briefly. $16/oz seems a bit high for something next to the government farm. Everything is a neighbor to the government farm –its not a huge area. Also, that shipping is ridiculous. EMS costs less.
User avatar
edkrueger
 
Posts: 1693
Joined: Jun 24th, '

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby bagua7 » May 31st, '13, 15:19

For those who are interested in purchasing gaoshan oolongs from Taiwan Tea Crafts, here's the response I received from someone behind the company after my enquiry in relation to their Da Yu Ling offering:

"Thank you very much for your email and interest in Taiwan Tea Crafts. The answer to your question requires nuances that necessitates some more detailed explanations. This being said, I will start off by saying that I cannot confirm the the Dayuling we are proposing comes from the 105K area, nor can anyone in Taiwan certify that teas sold under the Dayuling appellation were made with leaves coming from the 105K area unless you were able to personally witness the picking of the leaves and their subsequent transformation into tea and have picked up a quantity for yourself without loosing sight of the initial picked leaves during the whole process.

Dayuling is one of the most mysterious entity in the world of Taiwan tea. It carries such a reputation but yet, It is not a tea terroir as such, nor a clearly defined area other than a cross road point between Highway 8 and 14 in the central mountain range. There are no tea factories there. Only a few fruit and vegetable stands and restaurants. Teas picked at the 105 k mark would most likely be made in factories elsewhere, most often in Lishan or down towards Taichung, in Wushe. And this is where anything ca happen. Most often the 105 leaves are blended in with stock originating from elsewhere, at best (I will leave out explaining the worse case scenarii). When considering the amount of tea sold in the Taiwan local market under the name Dayuling, it is impossible that all of this originates from the few gardens at the 105k mark...

I do not say that it is impossible to get 100% 105K tea. What I will say though is that this original tea is most likely reserved and sold in advance to high bidders. Our Dayuling is purchased through an experienced tea trader. I know this doesn't sound very sexy to talk about a trader. Out west, this refers to “middle man” and paying a higher price for what you get. Here, it means having access to a network of contacts. Regarding tea pricing, this is governed by unwritten rules that are known by everyone in the trade. You will not last in the tea trade if you gouge people on price. This trader has been roaming the high mountains for over 20 years and our family has been buying some of his teas for over 15 years now. His quality is always consistent with the price he asks and the Dayuling character is there. And, since business networks are so important in the taiwanese culture, nobody would put himself in a position of hurting his reputation, unless you are foolish. I am sure you've heard about the Taiwanese (and Chinese) never wishing to “loose face”.

So this is my answer regarding Dayuling. At Taiwan Tea Crafts, we pride ourselves with authenticity, this is why we are not shy of talking about the people that make our teas, whenever it is possible. We consider ourselves as a conduit between our customers and the origins of what we propose on the site and the people behind these offerings. If you were asking me about any of our Lishan, Fushoushan, Shanlinxi (Longfengxia), Alishan, Lugu, Meishan and Bamboo Mountain offerings in our high mountain collection, my answer would be completely different. I could tell you about the growers, producers and finishers involved with each of them, and take full responsibility for what we propose. You seem to have picked THE one where I can't be so assertive. I promise that this will change in the future.

In the meantime, you can lookout for stories about Mr. Gao, our Lishan High Mountain Spirit Oolong producer very soon on our blog as well as a new Organic High Mountain Lishan we just discovered that will make its way on our pages. We're just waiting to receive delivery of it. Now, this one I am very excited about!

I hope this helps!
"
Last edited by bagua7 on Jun 4th, '13, 20:43, edited 2 times in total.
User avatar
bagua7
 
Posts: 1213
Joined: Jul 21st, '

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby 茶藝-TeaArt08 » May 31st, '13, 15:59

bagua7,

Very rich! The letter seems sincere and forthright and coincides with what I know of Taiwan tea and culture from living there and studying tea there. The letter's author alludes to the process of "guanxi" 關係, not losing face through communal back talking "bagua," etc. This explanation is the same/similar explanation I got from a collaborative group of sellers in Taizhong that I bought tea from, whom were selling bags of 105, the main seller being a police officer whom I trusted, whose co-op group buys tea to sell in their locations.
I tasted the purported 105 and another good quality Da Yu Ling. For me, the flavor profiles of what I tasted were not markedly different for the price between the two and I chose the non 105 tea.

Thank you for sharing the response. Reading it does further encourage my interest in Taiwan Tea Crafts.

Blessings!!
Last edited by 茶藝-TeaArt08 on May 31st, '13, 16:12, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
茶藝-TeaArt08
 
Posts: 438
Joined: May 11th, '
Location: Sacramento, California

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby the_economist » May 31st, '13, 16:02

What a magnificently longwinded way of saying: "we don't know."
User avatar
the_economist
 
Posts: 659
Joined: Sep 4th, '1

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby Devoted135 » May 31st, '13, 16:11

the_economist wrote:What a magnificently longwinded way of saying: "we don't know."


Exactly! Is this a common occurrence with DYL?
User avatar
Devoted135
 
Posts: 284
Joined: Sep 8th, '1

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby 茶藝-TeaArt08 » May 31st, '13, 16:40

Devoted135 wrote:
the_economist wrote:What a magnificently longwinded way of saying: "we don't know."


Exactly! Is this a common occurrence with DYL?


If there was one tea I was repeatedly told to doubt the authenticity of in Taiwan it would be, without a doubt, Da Yu Ling tea. The second would be Fu Shou Shan tea.

As Silent Chaos has already said earlier in this thread in regards to Fu Shou Shan tea, there are multiple ways a tea can said to a certain tea:

"Just to clarify, there are four things we are talking about here: 1) ''Foushou-Shan Farm'' oolong as in oolong from the famous government farm; 2) Oolongs not from that specific farm but claims to be; 3) Foushou Shan oolong as in oolong from the Foushou mountain (which the aforementioned farm is on); 4) oolongs not from Foushou Shan but claims to be."
I want to just emphasize that just because (3) isn't (1) that doesn't somehow make (3) ''fake''. (Silent Chaos)

I would add that the 5th way is Fu Shou Shan (or other tea) that is blended with other leaves, which is the third most common thing I was warned of in Taiwan by 秋山堂 teahouse, another friend who is a tea seller in Taiwan, other Taiwanese friends, and my tea teacher Fang Laoshi (方老師).

It was implied to me that very little, if any, authentic Da Yu Ling tea makes its way to the states. In fact, while there, many Taiwanese friends were hurriedly trying to by an "authentic" Da Yu Ling 2012 Winter harvest tea. The prices were high. I had one friend, whom works for Lin's ceramics pay about a $100 for 150 grams of Da Yu Ling. This seemed to be the rate when I was there. But I don't know from which source she bought hers.

Not that America isn't, but Taiwanese, and I would assert Chinese culture, is specifically very name conscious. (I say this as a man who is married to a Taiwanese woman, raised her extended family here in the U.S., lived in Taiwan and studied at the university there, whose teachers for Tai Ji, guqin, and tea are Taiwanese, and whom studied East Asian Studies with an emphasis on China and Taiwan) Generally great esteem can be gained by power of association with name (ming2 pai2(名牌) in Taiwan, which leads to, at times, difficulty, especially in tea, with finding 'the genuine.'

This is why we buy our tea in Taiwan each year and very seldom online. By sitting and tasting the tea with a vendor in Taiwan, even if it's fake, I know I'll at least have a good tea, wherever it came from. :D

I'm curious what Silent Chaos will have to say to this since his posts seem too to be forthright, informed, and clear.

Blessings all!
User avatar
茶藝-TeaArt08
 
Posts: 438
Joined: May 11th, '
Location: Sacramento, California

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby SilentChaos » May 31st, '13, 21:37

茶藝-TeaArt08 wrote:I would add that the 5th way is Fu Shou Shan (or other tea) that is blended with other leaves, which is the third most common thing I was warned of in Taiwan by 秋山堂 teahouse, another friend who is a tea seller in Taiwan, other Taiwanese friends, and my tea teacher Fang Laoshi (方老師).


I don't see why 'blending' is something to be 'warned' about. If by 'other leaves' you mean leaves from different mountains/terrior then perhaps I can see why you may be concerned. Much like sencha and gyokuro, almost all Taiwanese oolongs are blended in some sense - blending different farms from the same region or blending different batches from the same farm. As for why the teas are blended, I shall leave that topic for another day.
Last edited by SilentChaos on May 31st, '13, 21:57, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
SilentChaos
Vendor Member
 
Posts: 425
Joined: Feb 2nd, '1
Location: Taipei

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby SilentChaos » May 31st, '13, 21:55

茶藝-TeaArt08 wrote: I had one friend, whom works for Lin's ceramics pay about a $100 for 150 grams of Da Yu Ling.


I hope your friend was buying DYL from Song Lu tea farm (松露茶園) (105.5k).
User avatar
SilentChaos
Vendor Member
 
Posts: 425
Joined: Feb 2nd, '1
Location: Taipei

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby 茶藝-TeaArt08 » May 31st, '13, 22:12

SilentChaos wrote:
茶藝-TeaArt08 wrote:I would add that the 5th way is Fu Shou Shan (or other tea) that is blended with other leaves, which is the third most common thing I was warned of in Taiwan by 秋山堂 teahouse, another friend who is a tea seller in Taiwan, other Taiwanese friends, and my tea teacher Fang Laoshi (方老師).


I don't see why 'blending' is something to be 'warned' about. If by 'other leaves' you mean leaves from different mountains/terrior then perhaps I can see why you may be concerned. Much like sencha and gyokuro, almost all Taiwanese oolongs are blended in some sense - blending different farms from the same region or blending different batches from the same farm. As for why the teas are blended, I shall leave that topic for another day.


Yes, I appreciate and am completely open to your thoughts here and look forward to that "another day." :D (edit: had to edit/add this part, realized it could be interpreted the wrong way=What I mean is: "I sincerely look forward to what you have to say on that "another day" you mentioned above.)

I have one Taiwanese friend who runs a tearoom from his home by Donghai University, selling only Taiwan high mt. wulong. His warning was more in the sense of tea that is purposely blended with inferior leaves. This could be like the boogieman, something that people fear is out there that is out there much less than they fear it to be.

The other time this came up is when, as a teaching, we poured one student's various teas from home to test them during our brewing lesson (she often serves teas to her important customers and was curious about the quality) at Qiu Shan Tang with Fang Laoshi and other Qiu Shan Tang tea employees. One of the teas, it's a Taiwan brand which I have forgot the name of, was identified by all to likely have been blended. There was a noticeable difference in the color and the way the leaves were rolled, etc. The tea happened, during testing and brewing, to not be so good and lacked some of the qualities that Fang Laoshi distinctly associates with a good, winter harvest, I believe it was a He Huan Shan, tea.

Then again, this topic was brought up during my tasting of 105 at another Taizhong tea vendor, by the vendor.

These are some of the circumstances in which "blending" was brought up.

I genuinely remain grateful for and open to any knowledge your first-hand experience selling tea from Taiwan can bring to a tea discussion.

Blessings!
User avatar
茶藝-TeaArt08
 
Posts: 438
Joined: May 11th, '
Location: Sacramento, California

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby Tead Off » Jun 1st, '13, 00:30

SilentChaos wrote:
茶藝-TeaArt08 wrote: I had one friend, whom works for Lin's ceramics pay about a $100 for 150 grams of Da Yu Ling.


I hope your friend was buying DYL from Song Lu tea farm (松露茶園) (105.5k).

Lin farm is constantly mentioned as the 105k farm by many. Is this the same, Song Lu tea farm?

I had always envisioned the kilometre markings as ascending the mountain, but somehow didn't picture the terrain of actual farms being lower than their markings. This is why altitude is a better choice for a farm's description. Of course, this is no guarantee of quality.

BTW, how is the Spring 2013 DYL you are carrying and what altitude is it grown at?
User avatar
Tead Off
Vendor Member
 
Posts: 3401
Joined: Apr 1st, '0
Location: Bangkok

Re: Taiwanese Oolongs, Spring 2013 Harvest

Postby bagua7 » Jun 1st, '13, 01:05

茶藝-TeaArt08 wrote:The tea happened, during testing and brewing, to not be so good and lacked some of the qualities that Fang Laoshi distinctly associates with a good, winter harvest, I believe it was a He Huan Shan, tea.


So is this gaoshan an inferior one?

Care you explain this a bit more? Thanks.
User avatar
bagua7
 
Posts: 1213
Joined: Jul 21st, '

PreviousNext

Instant Messenger

Permissions
You cannot post new topics
You cannot reply to topics
You cannot edit your posts
You cannot delete your posts
You cannot post attachments
Navigation