Wednesday, January 03, 2007

A small tea world

I write a big 'thank you' to Adam Teatime (his web name) for meeting me 2 days ago at the Wisteria tea house in Taipei. Thanks for all your tea gifts. It was like Christmas!

But the most incredible thing happened when I spotted the guy next to me on the picture entering the tea house. Readers of the Pu-Erh Tea Community will recognize a frequent contributor (and moderator): Bearsbearsbears! Jason was quite surprised when I called his name and asked him to join us. It had been at least 4 years I hadn't been to Wisteria!

We were having a wild Phoenix Dancong when Jason arrived. That was a find by my Israeli friend who also joined us that night. The yun was very good and each brew was very different. This tea could really take long infusions and was definitely wild. Fragrance was not as strong as for most commercially available Dancongs. This was typically for a fall harvest.

Then we had a 20% oxidized winter 2006 Li Shan Oolong (1800 meters), a sample I had received from a farmer just last weekend. 20% is already a strong oxidation level for high mountain oolong. Instead of being flowery, its fragrance was more fruit and honey. I add honey, because the taste and aftertaste of such high mountain oolongs is so sweet when the oxidation is right (not too low).

We followed with my 2003 wild raw Yiwu qizi bing. I carefully flaked entire leaves and brewed it, like all other teas, in a gaiwan. Very pure taste. Excellent.

And we ended with my 2005 Oriental Beauty from Hsin Chu. Jason joked this was the best (and worst) Oriental Beauty he ever had... since it was the first time he had some. All sweet, a complex spice bouquet and a long aftertaste.

We were then asked to leave as time flew and the tea house wanted to close its doors (at 11:30PM). It was a magical evening of sharing and enjoying tea among tea friends! Thanks.


Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

What an incredible chance meeting with BBB (Jason)! That looks like him, alright, though he looks a bit more tea-stained from his tea journey. :)