Free global shipping on orders $35 or more!

Eco-Cha Tea Club: Honey Fragrance Oolong Tea

December 01, 2016

This batch of tea was harvested from the family-run farm where we regularly source our Dong Ding Oolong. They noticed the presence of the Green Leafhopper on this plot, and harvested it independently from other plots so they could specially process these leaves by letting them oxidize more than normal. The leaves were then only roasted once at low temperature to completely cure them. Here is the single, small batch harvest undergoing solar withering in the courtyard of their traditional home factory, followed by indoor withering on bamboo trays below.

Bug-bitten leaves are tricky to process, and have relatively unpredictable results, so the artisan must rely on experience and understanding of the unique condition of the leaves when harvested to achieve the desired result. Our friend decided that heavier oxidation of the leaves would produce a more balanced composition, which proved correct. He then decided not to risk losing the elusive "honey fragrance" by roasting the leaves to the degree of a more standard Concubine or Dong Ding Oolong. The final result is a batch of tea that is similar to a Hongshui Oolong, but with a distinct "honey fragrance" character that puts it in a flavor profile of its own. We were delighted and surprised to be offered a rare batch of bug-bitten tea from a winter harvest at mid-elevation, as it is a very unusual occurrence. And this natural phenomenon combined with the leaves being processed with traditional expertise has produced a unique batch that is an exciting start of our second year of the Eco-Cha Tea Club.

The bright green speck on a leaf in the slightly blurred phone shot above is what makes Honey Fragrance Oolong tea — The Green Leafhopper. A tiny flying insect appears in tea gardens when the combined timing of weather and new leaf growth is just right. It really is a bit of nature's magic at work along with traditional knowledge that provides us with a unique batch of tea like this one. We look forward to hearing about your experience of this winter harvest of Honey Fragrance Oolong!





Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in News

Eco-Cha Tea Club: Long Feng Xia High Mountain Oolong Tea Tasting Notes
Eco-Cha Tea Club: Long Feng Xia High Mountain Oolong Tea Tasting Notes

January 11, 2019

Batch #38  of the Eco-Cha Tea Club is kicking off 2019 with a cutting edge rendition of Taiwanese High Mountain Oolong Tea. We're inspired to share this batch of tea because of its differentiating value from the conventional market grade High Mountain Tea that has become well known in Taiwan and beyond. 

View full article →

Long Feng Xia  (龍鳳峽) or Dragon Phoenix Gorge
Eco-Cha Tea Club: Long Feng Xia High Mountain Oolong Tea

January 07, 2019

Long Feng Xia  (龍鳳峽) or Dragon Phoenix Gorge is a deep river valley on the south side of the Shan Lin Xi High Mountain Tea growing region. Long Feng Xia is also the place name of the ridge overlooking this gorge, and is well known in Taiwan as the source of some of the best quality Shan Lin Xi High Mountain Oolong Tea.

View full article →

How Long Does Tea Stay Fresh?
How Long Does Tea Stay Fresh?

December 20, 2018

The shelf life of tea is a common topic of discussion among tea drinkers. We often see questions such as:

  • Can tea go bad?
  • How do I keep my loose leaf tea fresh?
  • Which teas have longer or shorter shelf lives?

Let's look at some of the factors that affect how long your tea stays fresh.

View full article →