Fragrant Phoenixes and
Jade of Yellow Mountain
Newsletter October 11, 2014
Please accept my sincerest apology for not having been in touch. The past few months have been extraordinarily busy for us for various development projects, in addition to our growing business. For you, my tea friend, it translates into more quality choices and better values. You will see them here and in the coming months.
Shining harvests (and on sales)
We have spent quite some time in our harvests this year and the selections have come out shining. Not that the weather has allowed it, or everything has been smooth. Yet working harder with my producers for higher quality has never been more enjoyable. Here are some that especially worth mentioning:
The previous 2013 batch was soft, subtle and elegant. We have made the 2014 one even silkier, sweeter, more fragrant and fuller body and even better smoothness. My intention is to make this very elegant tea sublime. For people who think Honey Orchid too strong and Orchid Gratus too floral, this is another style of supreme quality from Phoenix, the origin of ancient style oolongs. To make it easy for you to understand how much work we have put in it, I have put it on a whooping 15% discount sale. <Buy now>
I am proud too, to bring you this year’s Eight Immortals. Supple, complex and much fuller than ever before. Like the 2014 Literati, this is from a prize winning producer in Wudong, the mecca of dancong. Had it not been the many years of bond-building with them, such taste would be out of reach. To distinguish this from our previous product, we are calling it Eight Immortals Wudong. You will know how much difference there is when you taste it. <Buy now>
Efforts have not been reserved for improving our popular Black Leaf Special either. This is a great tea for Phoenix beginners as well as gongfu tea making novice. Very easy for casual infusion for a traditional oolong, and yet a jewel of tea to serve to any guests. This batch is again the best we have been able to achieve for this variety ever. <Buy now>
I have not forgotten other tea categories.
While our Silver Needle Supreme 2011 has matured so well and sweet, with such honey and chocolate aroma that is possible only for a genuine and top quality single harvest, our 2014 batch is as outstandingly fresh and bright. It has not been easy to attain such supreme quality, while there has been crazy massive buying of the whole area’s productions by the Russians and the Germans, and most dramatically, puer producers from Yunnan. I feel blessed to have all my faithful producers backing me in such competitive times. <Buy now>
White Peony varieties will have new names now that people are more educated of the differences of the origins. White Peony Canary is now White Peony Fuding and White Peony Gold will be White Peony Zhenghe. You should compare the difference between a matured one and a fresh one if White Peony is your tea. <Buy now>
As you can see, we have worked hard to deliver great value not only in our higher price products but also for our cost-effective ones. The most amazing of these for the year may very well be one of our best value green teas, Huangshan Cuiyu. Fresh, bright, floral and yet savory and smooth. A delightful taste for the health conscious and green tea lover. <Buy now>
At the other end of the tea color spectrum, our black teas are equally amazing. Our Keemun producer has just been recognized as a showcase classic tea producer by the Chinese government. He is so happy that he is supplying us with a best value of his orthodox production to replace our Keemun Breakfast Golden Tip. It is now called Keemun FOP (Flowery Orange Pekoe), to better reflect the quality. It is a great representation of the famous name, and has a very slightly smoky flavor that some have been asking for. <Buy now>
Other things are happening too. We shall not continue to produce our house special Immortal Double Rebaked since we have not been able to find another tea master capable of the same technique. We shall take it off the shelf once the last pack is sold.
We shall discontinue also Phoenix Osmanthus. The tea master who scents this tea for us cannot afford to scent for only our small order while the price for fresh osmanthus flowers, good wood charcoal and labor have all gone up by tens of percents. His peers are using extracts and artificial flavors. This is against both his and my beliefs so we have decided to put this behind us. We are giving it a 25% discount to the remaining stock to let more people know what it is like before it disappears. The scent in this matured batch has lowered, but I like it better for that.
Black Leaf will be also gone after the few remaining packs are sold. We feel that we have to offer a lot more varieties rather than two tiers of quality of the same thing.
Better Choices, More Varieties
Yet we are not carrying less items. On the contrary, I have been busy building deeper bonds with more producers to build a larger product line for you to choose from and enjoy. More tea varieties and tea ware will be appearing in Tea Hong in the coming months. Here is a sneak preview of some of the coming products:
Larger pack sizes
We have promised many of you that larger pack sizes and they will be launched. That is since many months ago. Logistics and inventory management have been major issues. I shall talk about it in the next newsletter.
Many have expressed that we should have more dark teas to offer. We will. After a few months of negotiation and many studies and parties, we made an agreement with an old friend and a best Yunnan producer… and strengthened the bond with another rare origin that may surprise some of you. Next time.
Taster’s Mug and Tea-for-One
We have received many enquiries for restocking of the two items and yet we have yet to finalize on a quality producer to make them. I shall make another trip to meet with a few potentials as soon as I can find a few days, hopefully this month so I can bring you good news before Christmas.
A Big Thank You
Although tea has been our specialty for a long time, we are still constantly learning better ways to bring you the kind of quality we love. Internet teashop and retail for a global market are different playgrounds than what we are used to, but we are enjoying the game. Thank you again for your support all along for our promising growth. It is this growth that allows us to bring you better values and better qualities.
Thank you also for your patience with us while we continue to improve our systems and service quality. Please do let us know of any opinions, comments, or ideas. What you think shape how we bring you better teas.