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Brambr said

Wuyi <-> formosa

So I recently bought a tea called ‘’ Wuyi Pearl Oolong Formosa’’
from a Dutch Company called Simon Levelt.
(this is the tea on their website: http://www.simonlevelt.nl/thee/losse-thee/oolong/wuyi-pearl-oolong/ )

I was wondering how they got to that name. Because Wuyi refers to the Wuyi Mountains in China en Formosa refers to Taiwan. Wich are thus 2 different countries ?!
I’ve read that there were Wuyi tea plants that were transported to Taiwan and that in this sense Wuyi Oolong can refer to the plants themselfs and not the location.
SO what I would think is that this is a tea from taiwan made from wuyi tea plants.

But
1. the website of the company says the tea is from china (but a different version of the website for one of their local stores says its from Taiwan (so they seem confused themselfs)
2. On the package they call the tea “Da Hong Pao” or Big Red Robe.
I know this is the most well known type of Wuyi tea but if this tea should be from Taiwan are they allowed to use the name big red robe or are they just fooling their customers?

7 Replies
darky said

I’m pretty sure they can’t call it da hong pao if its not big red robe! thats confusing indeed. I like big red robe alot, but never tryed pearl oolongs. So if i bought that thinking its red robe, i would be ripped off!

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Brambr said

I got it as a present so I don’t really feel ripped off because I didn’t buy it thinking it was a Da Hong Pao.

But now that I think about it: the tea doesn’t look like Da Hong Pao (or not like the ones I had) the leaves are curled into small pearls (just like the name says indeed). And after some googleing I can’t find any Da Hong Pao that looks like pearls.

I guess it will be a Taiwan Oolong that has nothing to do with Da Hong Pao. No idea why they mention it on their package and explain where the name Big Red RObe comes from if it has nothing to do with the tea inside.

I’ve allready sent an email to the customer service of the tea company. I wonder what their reply will be.

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darky said

keep us informed! Btw your from gent? :)

Its probably one off those rolled greener oolongs i guess? all heavy roasted oolongs i had before where pretty large and long leaf’s

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Brambr said

Yes I’m from Ghent and you seem to be from Belgium too :)

The oolong is a rather roasted one (rolled and roasted) The leafs are quite long after steeping a few times. In fact there’s a review on my blog that I just started (in dutch) with a few pictures. It’s by writing the blog I realised something wasn’t right with the name…
http://degentsetheesocieteit.tumblr.com/

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darky said

oh you don’t see many belgians around here!

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darky said

nice blog btw, if u want to try big red robe check jingtea.com mine comes from there and i love it :) not so mutch like i love my phoenix honey orchid tough!

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Brambr said

News from the tea company!
At first I didn’t get an answer after mailing the tea company so I emailed to one of their shops.

At first the shop just copied the information that was on the package ( wich said nothing about its origin) so I replied that it wasn’t an answer tomy question and that it was a little silly they didn’t know where their to came from. Than they answered: The tea comes from mount wuyi and grows on a side that is pointed in the direction of taiwan. That’s where the name comes from.
I didn’t really believe that answer because the website of that specific local store said the tea was from Taiwan + it would be a strange that a Wuyi tea is named after an island that is about 600km further.

At the same time I received an email from the general contact adress from the tea company (after 4 days)
They said it took them so long because they contacted the plantation. The answer is: The tea is from taiwan but is the production method is the same as in the wuyi mountains. Thats why the tea name refers to wuyi.

This means the tea is from Taiwan and the production method is the same as the one from Da Hong Pao (the email specified the same tea from china is called China Wuyi Dark Rock).

So are they lying about their tea?
Well, just a little I guess. The name of the tea clearly says the tea is from Formosa. The package tells the history about Da Hong Pao.
It is very misleading they talk about Da Hong Pao on the package while the tea isn’t one. But as it uses the same methods and the name of the tea is not Da hong pao… well… very confusing
(so confusing that the local dealers even tell their clients the tea is from the Wuyi Mountains)

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