Our "annual fourth." Part of our rotating supply of Taiwanese Oolong teas, the type changes every year. This year we are featuring...
Gui Fei [gwey fey] Empress
Gui Fei is a "bug bitten" oolong made from leaves similar to our celebrated, mildly roasted, slightly oxidized tea, Tung Ting. In "bug bitten" teas, small insects are allowed to nibble the tea leaves as the bush grows, leaving behind small deposits that add a dark chocolate sweetness twist to the aroma. This tea mingles the scent of dark chocolate with the feeling of sitting in a small garden with a jar of flowers as company.
Our Annual Fourth is sold in a 50g packet for $25.00.
This dark oolong, grown among fruit trees, has a mysteriously sweet, fruity flavor comparable to grapefruit or apricot, though it is not a flavored tea. It was a top find on a more recent trip to China and is grown only in the Southeast Guangdong Province, in the valleys below the Phoenix Bird Mountain, Mount Feng Huang. From the variety of Dan Cong teas, we chose this Mi Lan (honey orchid) variety. This tea will warm you on the darkest nights and coldest winter days, and is the perfect company for sitting in front of a fire getting lost in a good book.
Feng Huang Dan Cong is sold for $9.00 / oz.
Wuyi Shan Shui Xian
[Woo-ee Shwan Shway Shwan] Water Nymph / Narcissus
This tea is known as “water nymph” or “narcissus,” named after the narcissus flowers in the port of Quanzhou, from where this tea was originally exported. This cheering drink from Wuyi Mountain has a distinctive, warming aroma and a voluptuous taste that leaves a slightly nutty sweetness on the lips. Long leaves are wilted and hand-rolled into murky dark green s-shapes, which unravel to produce copper-colored infusions laden with the ephemeral playfulness of fairy spirits. Seductive, this variety will cause the tea-drinker to gaze off into the teacup for many blissful hours.
Wuyi Shan Shui Xian is sold for $7.50 / oz.
Da Hong Pao
[da hung pow] Big Red Robe
We are proud to offer this incredible tea: a roasted, honeyed oolong from the steep Wuyi Mountains in northern Fujian Province with a roasted, oaken flavor that lingers on the pallet long after finishing the last drop and leaves a memory of damp fall leaves drifting to the forest floor or heaped in a backyard. This tea captivated our imagination and our intrigue immediately by way of its flavor, production, and aging.
The Wuyi Mountains, renowned for their snakes and diverse geology, are also famous for their dark oolongs. In the legend of Da Hong Pao, hundreds of years ago, a very ill nobleman was lost and wandering through the Wuyi Mountains when he came upon a village. The gracious villagers fed him a brew made from the leaves of a special tree. He quickly regained his health and strength and was so impressed by the healing properties of the tree that he took off his brilliant red robe and hung it on the tree to indicate its power. They say that the same tree still stands and all Da Hong Pao tea bushes can be traced back to the original.
Da Hong Pao is sold for $9.00 / oz.
[tung ting] Frozen Summit
A celebrated, mildly roasted, slightly oxidized tea, Tung Ting is squeezed when moist into little irregular oval shapes by a special pressing technique. In ancient times, feet were used. This vibrant and captivating variety dances with notes of caramel, chestnut, and warming chocolate, and it is imported directly from the bright slopes of the Tung Ting Mountains in Taiwan. Appropriate for drinking during contemplation as the shadows grow longer.
Tung Ting is sold in a 50g packet for $20.00.
[bye how] Oriental Beauty
Bai Hao is a darker, bug-bitten oolong, and typical of this type, it is sweet and nicely rounded with ambiguous floral, fruity, and malty flavors. A Taiwanese original, it is the superior class of semi-oxidized tea—the highest quality given the name Dongfang Meiren—with a higher degree of oxidation and a great abundance of white tips. Most suitable for enjoying this honey-like sweetness while reminiscing about picking mulberries on a damp fall day.