We went up to film on the first day of spring harvest by our source of Shan Lin Xi High Mountain Oolong Tea. The early morning was sunny, but the fog rolled in early, and we were socked in by noon, diminishing our aspirations for getting lots of scenic drone footage! But this is representative of the daily weather — particularly in this micro-climate of a ravine that faces northeast. The wind patterns combined with the heat rising from the valley floor push the moisture directly up this these slopes, which are wedged between two ridges. So the cool moist air is trapped here for longer than the more exposed slopes that are directly above the main valley. This is why this area fared the drought conditions that has engulfed Taiwan recently much better than most tea growing regions. The crop was slightly immature due to slower growth than normal, but tea trees produced uniform and abundant new growth. Other areas fared far worse, and in many cases did not get a spring crop at all.
Above is the bossman who supervises the processing of the fresh leaf from farms that our friend manages. They mostly process their produce to be sold as competition tea in the local Lugu Farmers' Association Dong Ding Oolong Tea Competition. Their tea is in high demand, and many people have won high ranking awards with it. In the photo above he is patiently and intently waiting for the right moment to stop the tumbling of the leaves in these large bamboo cylinders. This is a crucial step in determining the degree of oxidation in the leaves over the next few hours.
Watch our video to learn more details about this tea growing region and the tea that we source from it! We ended up procuring the final day of harvest from the highest elevation plot of tea. Our batch was harvested a full two weeks later than the first day of harvest shown in this video! Get this tea here!
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