Flavor: Heady, floral aroma. Smooth, delicate fruity flavor. Lingering, robust finish.
Garden: This tea garden is a prototype of sustainable tea farming, and is an anomaly in its region This farmer only harvests 3 times a year as opposed to the common practice 5 or 6 times a year. This allows the plants to grow more naturally and maintain optimal nourishment. Almost all tea in this region is machine harvested, but this farmer hand picks these leaves. He is dedicated to the highest quality possible by producing small amounts of carefully crafted tea. We are very excited about this new source.
Harvest: Hand-picked in small batches. Late Winter 2017. Songbolin, Taiwan.
This year's spring harvest of Four Seasons Spring leaves were picked just at the right time of reaching full size but still young and supple. They were skillfully oxidized to produce a wonderfully floral aroma balanced by a substantial fruity flavor that lingers long after drinking.
The range of character in this batch is striking. The initial floral aroma is followed by fresh berry tones and finishes in an amazingly complex bouquet that lingers and subtly transforms. Another unique batch from this very special source.
Around 1981, a Mu Zha tea farmer in Taipei County discovered a naturally occurring hybrid oolong in his tea garden that proved to be particularly suitable to the climate on Taiwan. Since then, it has gained popularity for its reliable produce and unique flavor and character. Now it is cultivated extensively as a signature oolong tea that is unique to the island of Taiwan. The name “Si Ji Qun” was chosen for the plant’s prolific year-round leaf growth, allowing for at least four harvests annually that produce a fresh, fragrant character of tea that is unique among oolongs.
This batch of tea leaves come from the most active tea maker and merchant we know. This man enters virtually every Oolong Tea competition in Taiwan, including the largest and most prestigious Oolong Tea competition in the world. He consistently achieves high ratings in all of these competitions. In this year's spring tea competitions that he entered, he won first prize in the Nantou County Tea Trade Association's Jin Xuan Oolong Competition.
In the last few years, he has formed a cooperative with his neighboring farmer friends who share the same high standards of cultivation and processing. This is in order to collectively produce a significant enough volume to be able to compete with larger scale productions of tea in this region, while maintaining the quality control standards of small, privately-run farms. Wholesale dealers of tea typically buy tea from large scale producers in quantities of thousands of pounds per harvest.
This co-op of farmers employs farming methods that use no chemical fertilizers or weed killers, and only a minimal amount of water soluble pesticides are administered at the beginning of the growing season. The tea leaves are randomly tested for trace chemical residue, and this team of farmers share their expertise in continually developing the most effective methods for cultivating quality tea.
Tasting Notes Origin Flavor: Fresh, herbal aroma. Green leafy character, mildly sweet. Refreshing flowery finish. Garden: This artisan consistently achieves high ratings in virtually every oolong tea competition in Taiwan, including...