Central Taiwan Lantern Festival 2024
Eco-Cha Teas Blog
by Eric Mah
6d ago
The Lantern Festival, also known as the Yuan Xiao Festival (元宵節), is a highly anticipated and celebrated event in Taiwan. This festival marks the end of the Chinese New Year celebrations and is observed on the 15th day of the first lunar month. This year, the Lantern Festival will be celebrated on February 24 and we wanted to share with you some of the festivities here on the ground. History of the Lantern Festival Ming Dynasty painting depicting a scene in Nanjing during the Lantern Festival. Source: Wikipedia Many stories abound about the the origins of the Lantern Festival, one of which&nb ..read more
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How To Use A Professional Tea Judging Set
Eco-Cha Teas Blog
by Eric Mah
4M ago
The Professional Tea Judging Set is essential teaware for being able to assess whole leaf tea efficiently and thoroughly. Let's take a look at what's included, and how it can be used to enhance your experience and understanding of tea. The Components of the Set This set includes three components: A 150 ml porcelain lidded cup with a strainer spout, an accompanying bowl, and a tasting spoon. All you need in addition to these is a tea cup to begin tasting tea like a pro! The bowl is also very useful on its own for quickly examining the tea leaves by brewing them directly in the bowl ..read more
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Muzha Tie Guan Yin Oolong
Eco-Cha Teas Blog
by Andy Kincart
4M ago
We just recently put our spring 2023 batch of Tie Guan Yin Oolong Tea on the shelf. We purposely allowed it to rest for more than four months before packaging it up to put in the store. This allows the roast to settle and mellow, bringing forth a more complex and refined flavor profile. We are always impressed at how this tea brews a luminescent rich copper-toned brew — portraying the skill and finesse of how it was roasted several times for a total of about 50 hours. Both the color of the brewed tea and the flavor profile are not prominently expressive of a heavily roasted oolong. It's more ..read more
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Shan Lin Xi High Mountain Oolong Tea | Fall 2023
Eco-Cha Teas Blog
by Andy Kincart
5M ago
Just getting to do the first home cupping of our new fall batch of Shan Lin Xi High Mountain Oolong Tea! We of course tasted it in the farmer's home before procuring it, and knew it was quality, but brewing it at home is the definitive assessment. Logically, it primarily has to do with the water that is used to brew the tea leaves, but there are many contributing factors that determine our experience of a cup of tea — including what we ate for lunch (if it's an afternoon tea session)! So, we feel most assured about our take on a given tea when we have brewed it at our own tea table. And this ..read more
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Alishan High Mountain Jin Xuan Oolong Tea Fall 2023
Eco-Cha Teas Blog
by Andy Kincart
6M ago
Alishan High Mountain Jin Xuan Oolong was the first of three different types of tea we cupped last week on our fall 2023 sourcing trip to Alishan Tea Country. Of the three batches of Alishan Jin Xuan being brewed above, we chose the one with the most pronounced buttery/creamy note that is characteristic of the Jin Xuan/Tai Cha #12 cultivar — also known as "milk oolong". This batch was also the most oxidized — resulting in a full bodied, balanced brew. We've befriended these resident professional tea makers over the last several years, including days and nights spent at the factory in Li Shan ..read more
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Alishan High Mountain Oolong Tea Fall 2023
Eco-Cha Teas Blog
by Andy Kincart
6M ago
It was quite the tea cupping when we visited our source of both Alishan and Li Shan High Mountain Oolong to taste the recent fall harvest. We cupped three different types of tea overall, drinking tea for about three hours straight! But for now, we'll focus on Alishan High Mountain Oolong Tea — fall harvest. We sourced both summer and fall harvests of Alishan High Mountain Oolong Tea from our friends in Ruifeng, Meishan Township. The central mountain range on Taiwan got lots of rain throughout August, but Alishan is the southernmost High Mountain Tea growing region, and gets more sunshine tha ..read more
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Ghost Festival in Taiwan: A Spectacular Display of Customs and Traditions
Eco-Cha Teas Blog
by Eric Mah
6M ago
Taiwan, a land of vibrant culture and rich traditions, is no stranger to unique customs and celebrations. One such captivating event is the Ghost Festival, known as 中元節 (Zhongyuan Festival), which takes place during the seventh month of the lunar calendar. This month-long celebration culminates on the 15th day when the gates of hell are believed to be thrown open, allowing restless spirits to roam freely on the earthly plane. In this blog post, we'll explore the captivating customs and rituals that make the Ghost Festival a truly extraordinary event in Taiwan. Understanding the Ghost Festival ..read more
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Shan Lin Xi High Mountain Oolong Tea Summer 2023
Eco-Cha Teas Blog
by Andy Kincart
8M ago
The tea garden that produced our summer 2023 batch of Shan Lin Xi High Mountain Oolong is an especially foresty plot of tea — especially in its current state! The owner of this plot of tea initially planted a lot of trees that have grown to nearly full size. The tea trees themselves have also been allowed to grow taller than usual, and were not trimmed after spring harvest. Early May to early July is when the tea leaves grow the fastest. If the trees were trimmed after spring harvest, the new growth would have been more prolific and grown even more quickly. Allowing the plants to continually ..read more
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Alishan High Mountain Oolong Summer 2023
Eco-Cha Teas Blog
by Andy Kincart
8M ago
We are excited to present a fine batch of Alishan High Mountain Oolong Tea — summer 2023! Taiwan has had much better weather during the second flush growing season, following drought conditions in early spring. And the weather during summer harvest has been auspiciously sunny!  We have two ongoing sources of our Alishan teas. Each harvest, we taste the daily batches of tea from both sources together to compare their individual characteristics, and choose the one we like most. This season we cupped five days of harvest — two from one source, and three from the other. After tasting all fi ..read more
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Traditional Dong Ding Oolong Spring 2023
Eco-Cha Teas Blog
by Eric Mah
10M ago
We snapped the photo above as we finally sat down after our work was done, and watched the sun rise over the ridge below Phoenix Mountain in Lugu, Taiwan. The third and final shift of processing the spring crop of Traditional Dong Ding Oolong Tea began at midnight and was completed as the sun rose. We worked the blue rolling machine and the green conveyor belt dryer on the left, and bundled the leaves collected in a basket as they cascaded from the primary drying machine. The master on the right performed the crucial step of tumble heating, when the leaves are exposed to high heat in large r ..read more
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