Golden sparkle, Wenshan Baozhong, a taste of spring blossoms


Taiwan is known for its oolong tea. Baozhong is a particular style that defines the tea culture and legacy of this beautiful island.

Like an enlightening spatter of light dancing off the wall, Golden Sparkle is an elegant tea with an aroma that reminds you of spring blossoms and pickled mango. It’s light, delicate and clean. Golden Sparkle is the name we gave this tea based on our impression. It’s also what people normally know as Wenshan Baozhong. There’s a saying about tea preference in Taiwan. It goes like ‘Baozhong for the north, oolong for the south.” Generally preferred by the north, this is a process that emphasizes on the refreshing floral notes in its aroma.


Baozhong mean to wrap seed. This name came from how this tea used to be packaged, wrapped in paper and folded into a cube. Some say the seed it refers to is the tea varietal ruanzhi, also referred to as Chin-shin-oolong (not to be confused with the broader term of tea style). Wenshan Baozhong undergoes a lighter fermentation. The fermentation level is usually between a green tea and the common oolong tea. Other than ruanzhi, TTES #12 is another popular varietal for this style of tea making.



The origin of this style goes back to the Japanese Colonial Era. A tea master called Jingshi Wei invented this method to release the natural floral notes from the tea rather than going through the then popular method of scenting the tea with flowers. The dried tea shows a inky dark green color, twisted tea leaves curl in the shape of a flying dragon. Japanese emperor Hirohito recognized Wei as the Father of Taiwanese tea.


color: golden sparkle

aroma: floral with hint of pickled mango

tea: smooth, delicate


Brew recommendation (western style)

dose: 2.5g (or one of our pyramid tea bag)

recommended water temperature: 195°F

flush tea with hot water before brewing

first brew: 150g water for 3 minutes

second brew: 150g water for 6 minutes

third brew: 150g water for 15 minutes


Brew recommendation (gongfu style)

dose: 6g

recommended water temperature: 195°F

rinse tea with hot water, discard rinse immediately

first brew: 150g water for 40 seconds

second brew: 150g water for 40 seconds

third brew: 150g water for 50 seconds

add 10 seconds each time for additional brews, can yield 4 ~ 5 brews


Baozhong is known especially for its refreshing floral notes, clean and uplifting taste.


reference:

Yi Ming Ruan, A History of Taiwanese Oolong



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