FREE GLOBAL SHIPPING ON ORDERS $35 OR MORE.

Blog

August, 12, 2018

0 Comments


Eco-Cha Tea Club: Honey Oolong Tea Tasting Notes

The extensive oxidation and minimal roasting offer a flavor profile that has the rich, density of Small Leaf Black Tea while still maintaining enough freshness to give it complexity and vibrancy. Sweet, ripe fruity notes balanced by mildly astringent nutty/woody tones. Add to this an unmistakeable honey essence in both the aroma and on the palate. It's a proper Oolong in its complexity, and a signature bug-bitten batch of tea. View full article →
August, 7, 2018

0 Comments


Eco-Cha Tea Club: Honey Oolong Tea

A mom, dad, and son team manage their small family farm and process their crops on their own. And the recent spring harvest offered the pleasant surprise of one day's harvest turning out to be Honey Oolong. This name is properly used when the flavor of the tea has a distinct honey character that results from the Green Leafhopper working its magic. The Leafhopper (jacobiasca formosana) is a tiny green bug that likes to feed on the sap of the tender new leaf buds. View full article →
August, 4, 2018

0 Comments


Harvesting Loose-Leaf Tea: Machine-Clipped VS. Hand-Picked

As the specialty tea industry rapidly gains popularity around the world, topics like this one are increasingly mentioned in blogposts, newsfeeds, and on social media platforms. Unfortunately, this type of commentary is mostly hearsay, and lacks objectivity. It was just such a post that recently prompted us to offer a more thorough perspective from the industry here in Taiwan. View full article →
July, 19, 2018

0 Comments


5 Easy Steps To Cold Brew Loose Leaf Tea

HERE'S WHAT YOU NEED:

  1. a container to brew 
  2. tea leaves
  3. drinking water

That's really all there is to it! Any water-tight container is fine. 

On the road and don't have any container? Just buy a bottle of water and put your tea leaves in that!

View full article →
July, 11, 2018

0 Comments


Comparing Seasonal Batches Of Loose Leaf Oolong Tea

The inspiration for this post began when we first tasted our spring batches of tea this year. Especially for the three teas that we'll take a look at here, we immediately thought upon tasting each of them, they are noticeably different from last winter's batch. So first, let's list the main points to observe in comparing seasonal batches from the same source of tea. View full article →
July, 6, 2018

0 Comments


Eco-Cha Tea Club: Eco-Farmed Jin Xuan GABA Tea Tasting Notes

This month's batch of tea being shared with the Eco-Cha Tea Club continues to intrigue us. It has qualities of a delicate Black Tea, with the complexity and depth that defines Oolong Tea. It's mild in character, but very substantial and well balanced in its flavor profile. Smooth on the palate, with tangy, fruity notes, and a lasting heady finish. It's got that composition that keeps you refilling your cup to get more! View full article →
July, 2, 2018

0 Comments


Eco-Cha Tea Club: Eco-Farmed Jin Xuan GABA Tea

While GABA tea was invented in Japan, it wasn't until Taiwanese tea makers applied their expertise in Oolong Tea processing methods that it became known for its unique qualities of flavor along with its heath benefits. Japanese production of GABA tea is focused on its value as a health food supplement, similar to green tea powder. The tea industry in Taiwan relies on its differentiating value of quality produce to compensate for its relatively low volume, compared to other tea producing countries.  So when the demand for GABA tea increased, Taiwanese tea makers used their skillful resources and developed a specialty tea with specific healthy attributes. View full article →
June, 27, 2018

0 Comments


5 reasons why you should cold brew tea

Quality cold brew tea, like coffee, is increasingly popular these days. Even the stalwart snobs among us have happily discovered that it cannot be considered inferior to their preferred paraphernalia-laden methods of brewing. Indeed, cold brew is just different, and with benefits of its own. So let's take a quick look at why cold brew appeals to tea lovers of all types.

View full article →
June, 18, 2018

0 Comments


Happy Dragon Boat Festival!

Our friend, and go-to teaware vendor for over 20 years, knows that we are always looking for interesting styles of teaware. When he sent us photos of this pretty decorative teapot, crafted in the shape of a swimming fish, only weeks before Dragon Boat Festival, we instantly recognized the cultural significance. To help celebrate the Dragon Boat Festival, we're offering you this special-edition teapot along with 75g of Tie Guan Yin Oolong tea for a limited time! View full article →
June, 17, 2018

0 Comments


Eco-Cha Tea Club: Light Roast Phoenix Village Oolong Tasting Notes

The truth is, our favorite batches of traditionally made Taiwanese Oolongs have come from this community of family owned farms in the foothills of Phoenix Mountain in Lugu Township. We've been told it's the soil, and the mid-elevation climate that is most conducive to making a traditionally made Oolong Tea. But in our own perception, it's the expertise that comes from generations of tea making that results in the character of tea that we love the most. View full article →
June, 13, 2018

0 Comments


Eco-Cha Tea Club: Light Roast Phoenix Village Oolong Tea

We recently visited Mr. Liu when we hosted a visitor from Italy who was keen on experiencing the local tea culture. Our guest was truly elated to be served tea by a true artisan of the trade. Mr. Liu served us three different teas that were all locally harvested this past spring. They varied only in their degree oxidation and roasting. And the one that was sufficiently oxidized, but only lightly roasted, immediately impressed us.

View full article →
June, 10, 2018

0 Comments


Dragon Boat Festival Special Offer

A few weeks ago we came across something fantastic that we knew we had to offer to our customers as part of the upcoming Dragon Boat Festival. We'll be announcing a special offer this Thursday (June 14th) first through our newsletter. So, if you haven't already signed up for our newsletter, sign up now here so you can get first dibs on this exciting item. If you sign up, you'll also get $5 off your first order. Not only is this item functional, and useful, it's sure to become a collectors item!

You can sign up for the newsletter at this link: http://eepurl.com/dvZs4L 

View full article →
June, 9, 2018

0 Comments


Sustainability and Responsible Farming—What Does it Entail?

Eco-Cha prides itself on sourcing tea in a responsible and sustainable way. There are lots of definitions and discussions on what this means exactly. These words can represent different things to different people. Here are some of the elements that we feel make a responsible farmer.

View full article →
June, 8, 2018

0 Comments


How to Choose Unroasted Oolong Tea

Here's a simple guide that defines and categorizes Taiwan's unroasted Oolong Tea in a way that will help you find your "cup of tea". View full article →
June, 1, 2018

1 Comments


How to Cure a Gongfu (Yixing) Teapot

There are many ways to brew up your favorite loose leaf tea, but one of the most meditative and relaxing ways is using a clay gongfu (or “yixing”)  teapot. These Chinese teapots allow you to brew seemingly endless pots of tea while chatting with family and friends. And the brewing method involved with using a gongfu teapot is considered to make the best-tasting tea. But, like any finely crafted tool or cooking utensil, there are some specific recommendations for preparing and caring for a brand new gongfu teapot. Check out our steps below on how to cure / season one before use. View full article →
May, 28, 2018

1 Comments


Traditional Oolong Tea Making Workshop In Taiwan

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. Join us as some of the world's premier oolong tea makers and judges teach their craft to the next generation. 

View full article →
May, 25, 2018

1 Comments


How To Choose Loose Leaf Oolong Tea

It turns out that you can tell a lot by "judging" Oolong tea by it's appearance. Here's a quick list of things to look for when you are looking at dry Oolong tea leaves. 

View full article →
May, 13, 2018

0 Comments


Eco-Cha Tea Club: Eco-Farmed Dong Pian Jade Oolong Tea Tasting Notes

Our friend who is an organic tea farmer kept this batch separate from his normal practice of combining winter and spring harvests for his high grade produce for retail sale. We discovered that he still had a small amount of this harvest left when we visited his farmhouse a few months ago and inquired if he had any unique batches of tea to share. In classic local manner, he modestly replied that he had a batch of Dong Pian Tsui Yu that was harvested last January. Dong Pian in Chinese basically means late winter harvest, and Tsui Yu is a hybrid strain that is translated as Jade Oolong. We tasted it and were captivated by its character, and were delighted to be told that there was enough tea be shared with the Eco-Cha Tea Club! View full article →
May, 11, 2018

0 Comments


How Alishan Oolong Tea Competitions Are Judged

Taiwan is one of the world's premier Oolong Tea producing regions. As such, tea makers in Taiwan are producing some of the best oolong tea in the world. Taiwan is also the home to tea competitions that makers from all over the island enter their best teas into. First prize at at the largest competitions goes for up to $10,000 USD for 600 grams. 

View full article →
May, 6, 2018

0 Comments


Eco-Cha Tea Club: Eco-Farmed Dong Pian Jade Oolong Tea

Shown above is the more recently planted section of a plot of Tsui Yu, aka Tai Cha #13, aka Jade Oolong. The crop that we are sharing with the Eco-Cha Tea Club this month was harvested in January, which makes it a relatively rare batch of tea in that it was harvested well after the winter harvest. In Taiwan, harvests that occur after December 21st are referred to as "Dong Pian", which is a name that connotes a new leaf growth that is stunted by the winter season. This late winter crop offers a distinctive character based on the slow growth of the new leaves on the tea trees. View full article →
April, 3, 2018

0 Comments


Eco-Cha Tea Club: Gold Medal Award Dong Ding Jin Xuan Oolong Tea Tasting Notes

With the first brew poured off, the leaves offer a distinctly roasted character with nutty, fruitwood fireside notes. After the second brew the aroma of the brewed leaves turns a bit fruity, with a warming spice sweetness reminiscent of pumpkin pie. The tea has a roasted flavor upfront, followed by a sweetness like grilled fresh corn. Then it moves into a more balanced, rich, complex character and smooth texture. The second visual assessment of competition teas is the purity of color and transparency of the brewed tea. It should be clear and luminescent. View full article →
April, 2, 2018

0 Comments


Eco-Cha Tea Club: Gold Medal Award Dong Ding Jin Xuan Oolong Tea

This month's batch of tea being shared with the Eco-Cha Tea Club was entered into the winter 2017 Nantou County Tea Trade Association's Dong Ding Jin Xuan Tea Competition, and received the Gold Medal Award. This award ranks within the top 5% of all entries. This competition has been in existence for almost 25 years. It began with the development of Jin Xuan tea production in the early 1990's. View full article →
March, 21, 2018

1 Comments


Cold Brew Tea Bottle

Contrary to what the recent weather has indicated, spring IS on its way! And while all those pots of freshly brewed hot tea provided warmth and well-being through the winter, it's time to start getting out and about. But there's no need to leave your beloved tea at home. From now until March 31st, order $50 or more of tea and you'll get this free cold brew tea bottle (retail value $15.99) to take your tea along with you! Make your order $75 or more, you'll also get free global shipping! View full article →
March, 13, 2018

0 Comments


Roasted Leafhopper High Mountain Tea Tasting Notes

The appearance of the brewed tea has gained substance, and become a deeper yellowish gold in comparison to the thinner, lighter unroasted brew. This coincides with the flavor profile in that the roasted version is heartier, with a more balanced character. The aroma coming off the leaves from the initial rinse is reminiscent of buttered carrots or yams. After the first brew, the aroma is more like grilled corn, cooling off into freshly baked scones. The second pour brought on stronger  roasted vegetable notes, but again cooling off into a pastry aroma.

View full article →
March, 8, 2018

0 Comments


Roasted Leafhopper High Mountain Oolong Tea

Last November, Eco-Cha Tea Club members got to experience the original unroasted flavor profile of a Leafhopper High Mountain Oolong, also referred to simply as "bug bitten tea", or "yeh nah day" in the Taiwanese dialect. When we sourced that batch of tea, we conceived of a "secret" plan to first share half of this batch of tea unroasted, then roast the other half in order to give our members the opportunity to taste the difference between the unroasted and roasted versions of the very same batch of  Leafhopper High Mountain Oolong Tea. View full article →