Traditional Oolong Tea Making Workshop In Taiwan

May 28, 2018 1 Comment

Indoor solar withering of freshly harvested tea leaves.

Eco-Cha recently attended a Traditional Dong Ding Oolong Tea making workshop conducted by the (Taiwan) Lugu Farmers' Association Dong Ding Oolong Tea Competition judging team. 

We recognize this as a significant event in that it is perhaps the most effective systematized effort to preserve this traditional product of regional origin.

Not only is this the world's largest Oolong Tea competition, it is a pioneer and precedent for contemporary tea competitions worldwide.

This team of professional tea judges is now comprised of 80 members, from which about half are hired to participate in each semi annual competition.

Solar withering outside of freshly harvested tea leaves.

Director of the Lugu Farmer's Association, and our tea mentor Tony Lin, has developed this competition over the last 30 years. Last year he decided it was important to educate the new generation of tea judges on traditional tea making.

So he created this workshop where 4 or 5 elder tea masters are invited to demonstrate their methods to the newer generations. The younger tea judges are are organized into teams of about 12 apprentices each.

Tony believes that only by experience of what is involved in making Traditional Dong Ding Oolong Tea, will this next generation be able to recognize the best characteristics of this local specialty, and thereby preserve and protect the quality standards on which this competition is based.

Here is a video of this event for you to Enjoy a “live window” into a 100 year old traditional tea culture, that is still thriving in 21st Century Lugu, Taiwan.

Artisan oolong tea masters pose for a picture for Eco-Cha.Above is a photo of Tony Lin (far right) with the four elder tea masters who demonstrated at this year's event. We felt honored that 3 of these 4 elders are tea makers who we've befriended and sourced tea from for years.

We weren't really aware of their status in the local community. We just knew these were our favorite people to visit and learn from and feel privileged to have a share in the tea they craft seasonally.

In a word, they make the best tea we've found over over the past 25 years!

Eco-Cha co-founder and sourcing director, Andy Kincart, standing proudly next to his all-time favorite tea master Mr. Liu, and his Taiwanese mentor Tony Lin.The above is Eco-Cha co-founder and sourcing director, Andy Kincart, standing proudly next to his all-time favorite tea master Mr. Liu, and his Taiwanese mentor Tony Lin.

If you liked this post please share. Sharing lets us know you liked it and we should keep writing more like it. Thanks! 





1 Response

Lu
Lu

June 08, 2018

I enjoy Taiwanese Oolong so much. I appreciate the team’s vision/efforts to pass down their skills to the younger generation and preserve the intangible cultural heritage.

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in News

Eco-Cha Tea Club: Traditional Lugu Oolong Tea Tasting Notes
Eco-Cha Tea Club: Traditional Lugu Oolong Tea Tasting Notes

June 12, 2019

The medium oxidized leaves have undergone extensive, repeated roastings that have resulted in a very balanced, integrated character. The initial steepings offer a freshly cut wood aroma with a toasted nutty flavor. This proceeds to open up into a sweeter, more complex profile that is strikingly reminiscent of roasted winter vegetables, including parsnip, caramelized onion and butternut squash.

View full article →

Eco-Cha Tea Club: Traditional Lugu Oolong Tea
Eco-Cha Tea Club: Traditional Lugu Oolong Tea

June 10, 2019

Mr. Zhang's father cultivated tea on their homesteaded land in Xiaobantian, on the southside of Lugu Township, where he grew up in the midst of traditional tea making. At 20 something, he decided to embody his local tradition by clearing land to cultivate his own plot of tea. For the last 20 years, he has managed his own humble, privately owned plot of tea. Throughout this period, he also acquired seasonal work in tea factories in Lugu, Shanlinxi, Alishan, Fanzaitian, and Lishan. In a word, he learned the ropes of tea making in a comprehensive way, like most tea farmers of his generation. Lugu hosts the highest concentration of tea makers in Taiwan, and is a hub of specialty tea making culture.

View full article →

Eco-Cha Tea Club: Charcoal Roasted High Altitude Oolong Tea Tasting Notes
Eco-Cha Tea Club: Charcoal Roasted High Altitude Oolong Tea Tasting Notes

May 14, 2019 1 Comment

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.

View full article →