Spring Rains Have Finally Arrived in Oolong Country!
March 26, 2015
Now into the second lunar month of the Goat Year, farmers and tea lovers alike were beginning to wonder if spring rains would ever arrive. We are happy to announce that they have indeed, and classic spring weather has commenced. This is good news for the first oolong tea crop of 2015. Almost daily rain with interspersed fog and sunshine have put our minds to ease in recent days, and new leaf buds growing visibly day to day bring hopeful anticipation for the harvest to come.
Spring harvest will be a bit later than usual this year as a result, but then again, Chinese New Year was unusually late too. And since the local farmers traditionally base their cycles of planting, pruning, and harvesting on the lunar calendar, maybe things are right on time in the cultural scheme of things!
We'll keep you posted on the progress of spring tea and the upcoming harvest. Here are a couple pics taken yesterday in the heart of Dong Ding Oolong tea country in Nantou, Taiwan:
Tea grown at high altitude is known for its substantial composition and smooth texture, particularly when the leaves have been sufficiently oxidized. This batch of tea offers that creamy texture and subtle complexity of flavor as a base, with a pronounced charcoal roasted component at the forefront. The charcoal roast is prominent in the first few brews, and the underlying complexity of the tea flavor comes through more and more with each brew.
Spring growing season had a long slow start this year, due to almost no rain until the beginning of April. The long awaited rain gave the tea trees what they needed to bring their spring buds into maturity. And we got a full week of good weather toward the end of the month, which turned out to be perfect timing for both our Shan Lin Xi and Alishan High Mountain Oolong sources.
We feel that the constitution of these tea leaves that were grown at high altitude with optimal farming methods, and crafted by some of the top tea producers in the industry, is what makes this batch so special. We cherish both the knowledge and the quality tea that Mr. Zhuang generously shared with us. We will miss him dearly.