We choose these specific teas to highlight because they have a rare and wonderful quality and flavor, with many layers and undertones. Each is distinctive, differing in complexity… each creating a luxurious long-lasting aftertaste. We think you’ll find these teas special too, from the first sip.
18 Ruby – Black tea
This is not your typical 18 Ruby black tea. The grower turned a ho-hum 18 Ruby into a very distinctive tea with a characteristic flavor and great complexity. The other reason we were drawn to this tea is that the grower’s tea plants have a distinctive pink-yellow hue in the young shoots. This is a sign that the tea has a high thearubigin (pigment) content, which adds to its deep flavor compounds. You’ll experience many layers of flavor with this 18 Ruby. It also has a specific aroma, almost like a woody, fruity aftertaste.
Amber Red – Black tea
If you like 18 Ruby, you’re going to love Amber Red black tea, a roasted black tea with sweet full flavors. It has a slightly different taste than 18 Ruby, being more delicate and sweet, with a beautiful aroma and well-rounded finish. Handpicked, rolled and fully oxidized and roasted twice, the result is a black tea with almost no dryness and bitterness. The double-roasting also reduces the amount of caffeine.
Jin Jun Mei – Black tea
Because of this grower’s high-quality plants and careful processing, the flavors are rich, smooth, with notes of cacao, sweet potato, and nectar. The texture is silky but medium-bodied, with a lingering, fragrant finish. We chose this classy black tea for its more delicate, smooth taste. It’s a little sweet and has many flavor layers with a rich finish. It’s the perfect tea to start the day.
Meijiawu Dragonwell – Green tea
Our Meijiawu Dragonwell is a delightful departure from the typical Dragonwell you’ll find on the market. It has a lot of complexity and a beautiful sweet finish. When served cooler, you can taste all the layers of its delicate flavors. We chose this grower’s Dragonwell because their native variety has more complexity, having been grown in the Meijiawu Village for generations. The teas are made from the finest bud tips picked during warm weather, before the spring rain so they taste fresh and rich and accumulate more nutrition. An elegant green tea.
Matcha Midori is an extraordinary balance of sweet and savory. For this reason (and others), we selected it and placed in our specialty category. Matcha Midori is a blend of 7 different cultivars, the main one being Okumidori. We love that the grower uses a traditional stone-mill to grind the matcha, which results in an ultrafine powder and creamy texture. We think you will also enjoy its aroma … soft floral with warm and savory notes that linger in the mouth, leaving a sweet, tingling aftertaste. Because you are sipping the actual ground tea leaves, the cultivation, preparation, and flavor of matcha are of utmost importance. We chose this matcha for its incredible taste and single source. This may be because it is produced in small batches from just one garden with natural cultivation methods. We also applaud the grower for using solar energy to lower their energy footprint. Solar-powered panels rather than the typical cloth are used to shade the tea plants.
Lishan Spring – Oolong tea
One of our favorite oolong teas. From the first sip, you can detect many different flavor layers. Lishan Spring has a very rich aroma and a beautiful long-lasting aftertaste. We selected it for its fruity and floral taste layers and fragrance, a characteristic of teas grown in this high mountain of Taiwan. We also like it for its “green” qualities that reflect its light oxidation and processing which bring out more floral aspects for an oolong tea. All this takes careful processing and monitoring to produce an outstanding taste. Kudos to the grower for this special oolong.
Da Hong Pao – Oolong tea
What draws us to Lishan Spring attracts us to Da Hong Pao – but for a completely different reason. The two teas are very different. Da Hong Pao is definitely stronger in flavor and less sweet than typical oolong teas from Taiwan. Famous for its distinctive mineral undertones, Da Hong Pao is sweet-tart like dried fruit. We also adore the legend that goes with it. Legend has it that a Chinese emperor sent his luxurious robes to protect the tea bushes growing on Wuyishan Rock after the tea was shown to have miraculous healing qualities that saved his mother’s life. Da Hong Pao means “Big Red Robe”.
Milk Oolong – Oolong tea
Milk Oolong is a green oolong tea flavored with subtle, natural milk flavors to accent it naturally sweet profile. The tea has a fresh, sweet, creamy flavor and a smooth, full texture and flowery fragrance typical of Taiwanese oolong. This tea type is specifically chosen for blending. Because of its special flavor, only a small amount of milk flavor is needed to enhance its natural creaminess. We adore it for its aroma and long-lasting aftertaste, which leaves a cool sensation in the throat.
Satemwa Antlers – White tea
Crafted from tender new growth tea leaf stems, its velvety white pekoe layer covers the stems which resemble deer antlers. It is a blend of several cultivars: Zomba, Thyolo, and Bvumbwe. Its closest cousin is Kukicha, a green tea also made from stems, found only in Japan. Referred to as one of the world’s most unusual teas, Satemwa Antlers must be harvested only during clear, sunny days, as the stems must be thoroughly sun-dried. Lower in caffeine, it is sweet, fragrant and has very little bitterness.