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September 04, 2017

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Eco-Cha Tea Club: Gold Medal Award Jin Xuan High Mountain Tea Tasting Notes

Eco-Cha Tea Club: Gold Medal Award Jin Xuan High Mountain Tea Tasting Notes

The leaves were delicately roasted to meet the competition quality standard, offering a mild, smooth, well-balanced, buttery-sweet brew. The light roasting can be observed in the color of the brewed tea above, which is more golden than an unroasted High Mountain Tea. We have very much appreciated this standard set by the Meishan Farmers' Association Competitions, as it offers a flavor profile that is between a fresh, green, floral unroasted High Mountain Tea and a rich, bold, complex traditionally made tea, such as Dong Ding Oolong.

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September 01, 2017

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Eco-Cha Tea Club: Gold Medal Award Jin Xuan High Mountain Tea

Eco-Cha Tea Club: Gold Medal Award Jin Xuan High Mountain Tea

The quality standard for the Meishan competition calls for a lightly roasted High Mountain Tea character. This is a relatively new flavor profile that stands between an unroasted High Mountain Tea and the more traditional, medium roasted Oolongs. Taiwan's national tea judges set this standard to promote a different style of tea making that has its own specialty quality. The art of roasting is added to the value of expert farming methods and processing of High Mountain Tea. In order to achieve optimal roasting results, the leaves need to be sufficiently oxidized, but not too much — perhaps 5-10% more than a standard unroasted "green" High Mountain Tea.

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August 11, 2017

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Behind The Scenes Of A Taiwan TV News Show

Behind The Scenes Of A Taiwan TV News Show

Behind the scenes of a tv show about Eco-Cha

Eco-Cha is featured on a Taiwan TV News station's lifestyle program called "Building Dreams For A New Taiwan"  (築夢新台灣)  broadcasting tonight. When the station called to notify us of the broadcast, I was prompted to go back take a look at the behind-the-scenes snapshots I took during the shoot. I discovered that they captured a personal story that I'm inspired to share.

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August 07, 2017

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Eco-Cha Tea Club: Shan Lin Xi High Mountain Concubine Oolong Tasting Notes

Eco-Cha Tea Club: Shan Lin Xi High Mountain Concubine Oolong Tasting Notes

Shan Lin Xi High Mountain Concubine Tasting Notes

Pictured above is the Little Green Leafhopper (小綠葉蟬), the tiny insect that is responsible for the creation of Concubine Oolong Tea. It's a bit of Nature's magic at work. Only about 0.5 cm in length, this "mini grasshopper" loves to feed on the sap of tender tea leaf buds. Bug-bitten Tea (as it is called in Taiwanese), has a distinct honey-like note in its flavor profile. Concubine Tea is made from bug-bitten tea leaves that are processed in a similar fashion to traditional Dong Ding Oolong Tea. The name was chosen in reference to the original, or at least the most renowned form of bug-bitten tea — Oriental Beauty.

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August 04, 2017

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Eco-Cha Shares Tea At The First Annual Portland Tea Festival

Eco-Cha Shares Tea At The First Annual Portland Tea Festival

Eco-Cha shares tea at the PDX Tea Fest

Eco-Cha looks forward to further collaborations with these pioneering artists of fine wood-fired tea wares, and hopefully we will even get to make an appearance at the PDX Tea Fest in years to come. To show our enthusiasm, we will share the coupon code here as well — it offers a single purchase 20% discount off anything in our store! Let's all work together in cultivating a global tea culture! 

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August 03, 2017

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Eco-Cha Tea Club: Shan Lin Xi High Mountain Concubine Oolong Tea

Eco-Cha Tea Club: Shan Lin Xi High Mountain Concubine Oolong Tea

Shan Lin Xi High Mountain Concubine Oolong Tea

The roasted character of this tea combined with the "bug-bitten effect" is what makes it unique. It's difficult to describe the flavor profile accurately. Concubine Tea is also known to vary subtly from brew to brew — which makes logical sense. If you think about it, it's inevitable that each leaf will be affected differently by the Leafhopper. So it really depends on which leaves end up in your teapot on a given day! So take the time to notice the variations from brew to brew. Get familiar with this batch, and learn how to brew it to to the best of your liking. Concubine Tea is by definition unique, from batch to batch and even from brew to brew. Enjoy the journey!

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July 06, 2017

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Eco-Cha Tea Club: Award Winning Roasted Jin Xuan Oolong Tasting Notes

Eco-Cha Tea Club: Award Winning Roasted Jin Xuan Oolong Tasting Notes

This batch of award winning tea is a cultural diplomat of central Taiwan's tea making tradition. It is a hearty, complex brew with a broad profile of flavor that is bound to satisfy both the sensitive palate as well as the demand for a robust, full-flavored brew. It is a middle ground in the spectrum of tea types, ranging from Green Tea to Black Tea, with a wide variety of Oolongs in-between. It has a definite "cured" character, while maintaining a substantial fruity, clean quality offering an interesting brew that remains interesting for, well — years-on-end! In a word, it's our favorite style of tea. 

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June 30, 2017

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Eco-Cha Tea Club: Award Winning Roasted Jin Xuan Oolong Tea

Eco-Cha Tea Club: Award Winning Roasted Jin Xuan Oolong Tea

Songbolin is a historical tea producing region that is home to some of the most skilled Oolong Tea artisans in Taiwan. This batch of tea was procured by a top competition player, and cured with a precision that attained First Prize, Top Prize (top 2%), and Second Category Prize Awards in a local competition. Three entries from the same harvest, roasted in 3 separate batches, attained the top three prizes.

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June 12, 2017

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Eco-Cha Tea Club: Hong Shui Oolong Tasting Notes

Eco-Cha Tea Club: Hong Shui Oolong Tasting Notes

The rich reddish-amber hue of the brewed tea is also a clear indication of substantially oxidized tea leaves, especially since they were left unroasted. Hong Shui Oolong tea leaves are more heavily oxidized than its close cousin, Dong Ding Oolong. Dong Ding Oolong reaches a comparative level of rich, robust character due to the additional roasting process. Hong Shui is a more pure character in that the flavor profile is derived directly from the constituents in the leaves, whereas roasting is a type of "flavor enhancer", just as it is in the culinary world.

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June 01, 2017

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Eco-Cha Tea Club: Traditional Hong Shui Oolong Tea

Eco-Cha Tea Club: Traditional Hong Shui Oolong Tea

We met Mr. Chen when we spent the night in our Lishan High Mountain Tea source's factory last spring. We learned that he specializes in making Hong Shui Oolong in Fenghuang Village, where he was born and raised. It is only with this year's spring harvest that we got the opportunity to procure a small amount of this tea type to share with our Eco-Cha Tea Club members.

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