Floating Leaves Tea Home ---Shiuwen's Blog!

Monday, August 10, 2015

Floating Leaves Tea Is Turning 10 Years Old!





I know it sounds like a cliche but I simply can't believe Floating Leaves Tea is turning 10 years old! I guess when I am having fun, time really does fly.

It has been an amazing 10 years. Thank you all for supporting me on this incredible journey. While I am writing this post, the memories of setting up the tea house, of customers enjoying the space, of the uncertainty we faced when we moved to a new location...all lead to this moment now where I feel blessed to have so much help and encouragement!

I love this tea business! I love to travel to the tea regions and to learn from the farmers who are down to earth and passionate about their teas. I was super excited that I got to expand my tea travels from Taiwan to Yunnan China this past April. Thank you, Jan, Masa, Brian and Awoono, for making this trip possible. You guys are incredible!

What I love about this tea business the most is connecting with you over cups of tea. I have had great tea sessions here, chatting about tea, life and philosophy. When I see the sparkle in your eyes, when I see that you find a tea here that makes you happy, I know I've done a good job.

And thank you, internet customers, for supporting Floating Leaves Tea all of these years! Every time I receive an order, I feel like I make a tea connection. Seeing so many repeat orders from you makes my day. It makes me feel like you identify with what I am doing and I will continue to do better for you.

Thinking about all of this brings a big smile on my face, and I almost forgot to mention Floating Leaves Tea's 10-year-old Anniversary Sale: 25% Off on all our tea selection starting on August 12th. The sale will last for 1 week.

When I drink a cup of tea, I will be thinking all of you with warm gratitude in my heart. Thank you for these great 10 years. I look forward to the next amazing 10 years of my tea journey with you!


Thursday, July 09, 2015

Some Beautiful Tea Photos To Share

I have been going through some photos on my laptop and  came across some really nice photos taken by a 2013 Taiwan trip member. I thought you might enjoy viewing them, too.

Alishan


tea field at DingHu, Alishan




tea pickers handing in their tea



leaves after the "Big Stir"


Muzha



picking tea at Muzha




collecting tea after outdoor oxidation



beautiful Tieguanyin 


PingLin



I love being in PingLin



walking back to Farmer's Chen's  


three leaves and a bud



SheShui



SheShui is known for Black tea 


tea field at SheShui



after a wonderful hike



Taipei - Wistaria Tea House



I love drinking tea at this teahouse!



awesome Puer



enjoying tea


I miss being in Taiwan. Thank you, Matthew, for giving me these photos. They brought back good memories!

Friday, June 12, 2015

2015 Spring High Mountain Oolong - Fantastic Tea!

When our buyer, Rob Bageant, was out buying the Spring High Mountain Oolongs, I stayed connected with him via messaging. It was a bit of torture for me not to taste the tea, but at the same time, it was pretty fun to feel I could taste the teas based on his descriptions. We have bought tea together many times throughout the years; I have confidence and feel very connected to buy tea this way even though I was not there physically.

dry leaves of ShanLinXi


It excited me when our buyer's opening statement was, " Very good tea this season. So balanced." Then, he said, " it makes tea buying easy this year because it's so good!" When he was tasting DaYuLing, "this tea has no flaw", he said. I was screaming in my apartment, " I want to taste it"!

I had some of the High Mountain Oolongs shipped to Seattle via express mail. The box magically showed up in two days. Of course, I couldn't wait and tasted them all in a row. 

At that moment, I understood what Rob meant by the tea was very good this season. I tasted the Alishan, it was so beautiful that I felt that I was in a garden. Then I proceeded to ShanLinXi, it was a good ShanLinXi as I remembered: citrus, fruity, and wonderful stimulation in the mouth. Then I moved on to HeHuanShan, I remembered I kept saying, " I like this tea, I like this tea......There is so much goodness going on". When I tasted the Lishan, this came to my mind, " Yes! Thank you! A well balanced, solid, good Lishan. Thank you!"
I heat up the water to prepare to brew DayuLing. To be honest, I didn't know what to expect. I have not carried this tea for many seasons. The first sip reached to my mouth. I had my eyes closed," Oh my! I have not tasted anything this buttery for a long time!" 



brewed leaves of DaYuLing


I remembered I read it somewhere saying that tea is the nectar of God. Yes, it is and it's magic. Tea leaves in a cup, and those farmers are able to transform a plant into a liquid that is so beautiful, complex and full of goodness. 



After so much high mountain tea, I felt pretty lively. I felt like I turned into a butterfly, happily flying around flowers in a beautiful garden. I felt very grateful of the farmers, the weather, and Rob. I felt fortune to be able to taste them. I had the wonderful flavor of tea lingering in my mouth, thinking, "Life is very good, isn't it?" 

Friday, May 01, 2015

MoJiang, A Small Yet Adorable Place

We were in MoJiang, Yunnan for two days. I love this place! It's small and friendly. The biggest tribe here is the NaXi. People in this city haven't seen many outsiders. We were met with curious eyes, and the friendly locals coming and going all said "hello" to us.

There are plenty of cars in this city and at the same time, it's not unusual to see two oxen cross the busy street in the morning or people who still use a pole to carry goods to the market in the traditional way. It feels like the past and present meeting up at the same time and place.



I love walking through their morning market and their beautiful park. It gives me a sense of their lives and I enjoy the feeling of being there. I hope the photos can give you a glimpse of the beautiful people in this adorable place.











Spending time with Mr. Wang, who owns a tea factory, and his crew makes this place more special. Mr. Wang is funny and generous. I am very grateful to him for spending so much time showing us around, taking us to tea fields, showing us his tea factory, asking his crew to help us to make tea, brewing tons of tea for us, and talking to us about Puer tea. Everyone we met in this city were so very friendly and open!













And did I mention the food here is fantastic? They sure love their wild vegetables and super free-range chicken!






Saturday, April 18, 2015

Pressing Puer Cakes

Here are some of the basic steps involved in pressing Puer. I will share more information and some videos with you after I return to Seattle.

1.  Prepare the Puer Mao Cha.


2.  Weigh the leaves.


3.  Steam the Puer tea.


4.   Place the steamed leaves into a cloth wrapper and then tie the bag into a specific size and shape.



5.  Press the cloth bag with the steamed leaves about 3 times.



6.  Lay pressed cakes, wrapped in cloth, on tea racks.



7.  After the pressed cakes cool enough, the cloth wrapper is removed and the cakes are laid on racks for further drying.