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Seasonal Tea — 2018

Early Spring Jade Dew

Doug Palas 2018 China Early Spring Green Tea Hubei

Early Spring Jade Dew

Hubei province, located in essentially in the middle of China, is home to some of the oldest tea growing areas. Many different innovative styles of tea were invented there. For example it is where the steaming techniques for green tea were invented. These were the same techniques that traveled from China to Japan hundreds of years ago. Nowadays pan-firing is commonplace for green tea, but time-tested steamed tea is still produced in Hubei. Tax records in Hubei, China dating back hundreds of years list a tea called yulu which translates to “jade dew.” This particular tea is believed to be...

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2018 White Tipped Oolong

Doug Palas 2018 High Mountain Oolong Tea Qin Xing Thailand

2018 White Tipped Oolong

Tea production in Taiwan began after a mass migration of millions of people from China during the middle of the 19th Century. Immigrants brought tea cultivars and oolong processing knowledge from Southern Fujian which evolved to produce modern oolong styles such as bai, hao, bao zhong, high mountain oolong, and iron goddess of mercy. In the past 15 years many Taiwanese tea producers have left the small, crowded island of Taiwan in search of new places to produce oolong. Thailand, and South and Central China are now home to Taiwanese tea producers looking to explore different terroir while continuing to...

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2018 Red Jade

Doug Palas 2018 Black Tea Taiwan

2018 Red Jade

Red Jade, Sun Moon Lake Tea, Hong Yue, and Variety # 18 are all different names for one the most unusual teas that I’ve ever had the pleasure of tasting. Developed before the Second World War during the Japanese occupation of Taiwan, Red Jade was created when a large leaf tea bush from Burma was bred with a native Taiwan variety.  After the war, when quality of black tea declined due to mechanization and the popularity of the tea bag, Red Jade was mostly forgotten. In 2002, one of the gardens that I purchase oolong tea from planted the trees...

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2018 Winter Li Shan

Doug Palas 2018 High Mountain Oolong Tea Qin Xing Taiwan

2018 Winter Li Shan

The quality of a tea is determined by three primary factors: the cultivar or the specific type of tea plant, the processing steps used, and the terroir, a French term used to describe the different aspects of the environment from which it was grown. With Taiwan oolong teas it is just one aspect of terroir that garners lots of attention: The elevation at which the tea was grown. The highest grown teas are labeled goa shan cha or high mountain tea with a growing elevation of over 1000 masl. Taiwan has more mountains that produce high mountain oolongs than any...

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2018 Organic Snow Buds

Doug Palas 2018 China Early Spring Green Tea Yunnan

2018 Organic Snow Buds

The majority of China green tea undergoes a pan-firing process to de-enzyme the tea so that the leaves and flavor can remain green. An older, more traditional, method is to use convective heat to gently bake the leaves. Baking preserves delicate floral flavors, and doesn’t impart as much flavor from the process as pan-firing. Our latest offering, Snow Buds, is a baked green tea from Yunnan, China. Currently, we offer a rather large selection of tea made from slightly different varieties the da yeh cultivar. Its versatility is quite amazing, whether it’s a white, green, yellow or black tea, da...

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