AJ said

Mystery Tea

It looks like there hasn’t been a Tea Mystery in a while, so I thought I’d post my own.

Recently my aunt sent me a small tea chest. Within were two ~4oz tins. Within each tin were five small red packages of this tea. I asked her what kind of tea it was, and she replied oolong.

There are a lot of oolongs, so I was hoping for a better answer than that. I searched the serial number on the packages through google, and did kind that they were connected to “tea (oolong)”, but didn’t get any more information than that.

Maybe I’m just out of luck and they are just a nameless oolong of unknown origins and company, but I kind of wanted to list it on Steepster without adding it under the “Unknown” company.

At any rate, I scanned one of the packages flat. The characters are a little difficult to see as they’re black and silver on a red background, but it’s worth a try (I could even try to write them out myself and post that up, if that’s easier). Or even if someone just recognizes the package itself.


I tried the tea itself (made a wild guess at steeping parameters); it’s bakey, tasty, and on the greener side, but not far.

4 Replies

The package says Tie Guan Yin on it. And wow! The product’s brand name is a print of work from a famous late calligrapher in China. In Chinese calligraphy, he was The One! That’s the power of celebrity. Because of the calligraphy, I believe the product is good :D

AJ said

Awesome! What are the chances that on the same day I ran out of Jade Teapot’s tie guan yin, I’d get two tins full of another?

I tried to rule tie guan yin out earlier by comparing the characters to those on Jade Teapot’s package, but I see now I obviously didn’t look hard enough, because I can see the last three characters clearly on both. And they’re the same as on wikipedia’s entry.

I feel like I’ve got something very special now. I’ll have to add it to the database. The first two characters, before ‘tie guan yin’; do those denote the variety?

The first two characters mean “good taste”. It can be descriptive. But sometimes this word is also used for greener Tie Guan Yin that’s processed with a specific method which results in the tea greener but not too grassy. Maybe that’s why you said the tea is on the green side but not far :D

AJ said

Very neat. Thank you.

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