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:
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This month's batch of tea being shared with the Eco-Cha Tea Club was made by Mr. Su — an 80 year-old artisan of traditional Dong Ding Oolong Tea. He planted a plot of the Tie Guan Yin strain in his backyard several years ago, and this is the second time we've sourced this tea type from him. Mr. Su is our favorite representative of traditionally made tea in Taiwan, and it brings us a special kind of joy to be able to share his tea with our tea club members.
This batch has a particularly sweet character, with slightly tangy, fruity notes and a pleasantly clean lingering aftertaste. It has just enough of that cured, almost fermented character that makes it reminiscent of a traditionally made Tie Guan Yin Oolong. But given that it was only roasted once, it maintains a mild flavor profile similar to a Hong Shui Oolong.