China. Travel futures and logs!

Culture, language, tangibles, intangibles from countries known for tea. China, Japan, Taiwan, Korea, India, etc...


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Apr 21st, '17, 02:56
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Joined: Aug 4th, '14
Location: Taiwan

Re: China. Travel futures and logs!

by Bok » Apr 21st, '17, 02:56

As many markets this one was also slightly overwhelming, lots of the same, all crowded with tea and teaware and whatnot. So the big question is where to start? Sidenote, almost empty, not many customers in sight.

Firstly I avoided the hawking shops which approach you speaking in English.

Then my eye got caught by a small shop which had some very nice looking handwritten labels on their craft-paper tea packs. Curious I went in and the owner just had put a few leaves in a gaiwan and asked me/us if we want to join him. Turned out this shop is specialised in Dancong only. Told him I was originally looking for Yancha, but still decided to give it a try as I did not have this kind of Oolong either.

tbc...

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Apr 21st, '17, 03:01
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Location: Taiwan

Re: China. Travel futures and logs!

by Bok » Apr 21st, '17, 03:01

His Dancongs were decent in my opinion as a first-timer. Some reminded me a bit of Oriental Beauty and certain high mountain blacks from Taiwan.

He prepared a few and I settled on a cheaper one, which I liked better than the first more expensive one he had just been delivered.

Need to look up the exact names later.
All in all I do not think I was especially ripped off, prices are higher than in Taiwan, but still ok for an horizon expansion and a trip souvenir. There was a nice sense of taste in the shop and how he brewed too, compared to the other more local style shops.

I did not get to try the nicely labeled teas though, turns out they start from 10000 RMB upwards for a 100g, which is why he did not even offer to brew them for us...

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Apr 21st, '17, 03:09
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Re: China. Travel futures and logs!

by Bok » Apr 21st, '17, 03:09

Only afterwards - of course - he referred me to his friend upstairs who only specialises in Wuyi tea. :mrgreen:

So we went up to a more local style shop, so atmosphere and teaware-wise not as pleasant.
But I finally got to try some Wuyi! A Shuixian at first and two qualities of Rougui afterwards. Slightly similar to the Dancongs - by a stretch though, but noticeably more powerful. The interesting thing was that the owner left the first brew out on the side - only for the last and better quality tea - to be drunk last. Cooled down the seemingly too light first brew become a very interesting additional layer.

What I would say makes those teas quite different to a lot of Taiwan teas is, how drastically they change from one infusion to the next!

I could not tell how far up or down on the scale the teas where that I tried, but they were definitely all not bad at all. Pricey, yes but same as the Dancongs a nice change in scenery from Taiwan. Bought only a little pack in this shop as the teas where a lot more expensive than in the first shop. Gonna post names later

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Apr 21st, '17, 05:58
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Re: China. Travel futures and logs!

by Tead Off » Apr 21st, '17, 05:58

Bok wrote: my search was to find and finally try some Wuyi teas, without having to resort to international online shops...
I don't really understand your reluctance to buy teas from online vendors. What are you afraid of?
In Shanghai, Teaurchin, an online vendor and seller of good Yancha, can provide you with good quality Yancha at a fraction of the prices you are quoting. Plus, the recommendations of posters on Teachat as well as on the sites of the vendors, can help you make a choice. If you're concerned about being ripped off, the tea market in Shanghai is no place for you. No reason to pay 10,000RMB for some Yancha as an introduction. You might even be able to buy samples from many online sellers. Get to it, dude :D

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Apr 21st, '17, 06:05
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Location: Taiwan

Re: China. Travel futures and logs!

by Bok » Apr 21st, '17, 06:05

Tead Off wrote:
I don't really understand your reluctance to buy teas from online vendors. What are you afraid of?
In Shanghai, Teaurchin, an online vendor and seller of good Yancha, can provide you with good quality Yancha at a fraction of the prices you are quoting. Plus, the recommendations of posters on Teachat as well as on the sites of the vendors, can help you make a choice. If you're concerned about being ripped off, the tea market in Shanghai is no place for you. No reason to pay 10,000RMB for some Yancha as an introduction. You might even be able to buy samples from many online sellers. Get to it, dude :D
The teas I finally bought were at a much lower price, around 300 for 75g for the Rougui for example. I just do not like to buy tea without trying it first.

I was there for business, so just a little detour to get a first impression. For those purposes the market was ok. Not really afraid of getting ripped off, food and drinks is just something I like to experience in person...

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Apr 21st, '17, 08:13
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Re: China. Travel futures and logs!

by Bok » Apr 21st, '17, 08:13

... not to forget the chit chat with the shop owners which was informative and interesting as well. After all you spent a lot of time in their shops tasting the teas! The first Dancong kept going and going. And that even as he was brewing it pretty much non-stop.

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Apr 21st, '17, 22:16
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Location: Taiwan

Re: China. Travel futures and logs!

by Bok » Apr 21st, '17, 22:16

Tiny update: the Dancong shop also has a Taobao outlet, checked the prices and they concur more or less with what I paid, so that shop has been honest.

So far so good, now I need to get home to experiment with brewing them myself :lol:

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