Flavor: Balanced, sweet aroma. Creamy smooth texture with subtle savory, vegetal character. Lasting pastry finish.
Garden: This farm is in Taiwan's prime tea growing region. In this region, the location of Dayuling farms are commonly indicated by the kilometer marking on the Cross-Central Highway. This farm is around the 90k marker, which indicates some of the most pristine tea real estate on the island.
The highest elevation tea growing regions are considered the epitome of where this type of tea is produced.The ideal climate conditions offered by this elevation range combined with the methods of tea cultivation that have been developed are considered to be the main factors that have gained this category of tea its fame.
The place name Da Yu Ling is unsurpassed for premium Taiwan High Mountain Oolong, and we feel privileged to be able to share this tea, which has become recognized as some of the best in the world.
Harvest: Hand picked in small batches. Spring 2017.
This is a rare batch of Da Yu Ling High Mountain Tea in that the level of oxidation exceeds the commonly produced tea in this region at highest elevation. The difference between the standard 10-15% level of oxidation and the less commonly produced 20-25% is that the light, floral, green character is transformed into a more fruity, substantial, smooth character of High Mountain Oolong. Another way of putting it is that is less like a Green Tea and more like an Oolong.
As a result of decades of commercial promotion of a greener, lightly oxidized tea and subsequent consumer demand for this tea type, more well-oxidized tea is difficult to source. There is simply less of a demand than there is for more lightly oxidized tea. Slowly, however, only in recent years, tea makers are meeting the requests from successful tea merchants and professionals who are only willing to buy tea with a significantly higher level of oxidation.
We are fortunate enough to be connected with professionals who have access to this minimally produced type of tea. The subtleties of aroma are derived from newly grown leaves of the Green Heart Oolong (清心烏龍) tea plant grown at an elevation that provides optimal climate conditions. The slower growth at high elevation provides substance to the tender new growth which in turn gives premium Taiwan High Mountain tea its claim to fame. It is in a class of its own due its smooth, clean - yet complex flavor followed by a heady, lingering aftertaste..
The Story Of This Tea
This Da Yu Ling Oolong ranks definitively within the category of Taiwan's finest High Mountain Oolong. Only natural fertilizers and chemical farm products authorized by the Taiwan Research and Extension Station are used in the cultivation of this tea. It is processed in a way that produces the highest quality High Mountain Oolong.
This batch of tea was procured through a friend who is one of the most active tea merchants we know. He also is the most frequent prize winner in tea competitions all over the island of Taiwan. He was raised in tea and his father is a renowned tea producer in the Songbolin area of Nantou County. He diligently seeks out tea from sources with whom he has ongoing relationships with, and who know what he likes. Without this kind of history of connections in the local industry, it is quite difficult to source this level of exclusive quality.
This standard of quality is mainly in relation to the amount of oxidation that the leaves undergo, in addition to farm management. The producer and the buyer share their tea making experience and mutually agree on the methods to be employed. In this way, the buyer is not dependent on what is produced in a given season without actively participating in the production. That would require shopping around with less reliable sources that lack the reliability of a working relationship.
The buyer can refer to previous batches of tea that he has procured and fine tune the processing methods based on previous results. This is crucial when it comes to procuring the finest High Mountain Oolong Tea in the world. Isolated tea farms at the highest range of elevation that are cultivated by farmers who are sought after by other artisans with perhaps more experience in tea cultivation brings the quality of production to a premium. This is the cutting edge of the High Mountain Oolong Tea industry and the circumstance in which this tea was procured.