Thursday, February 21, 2013

2012 TOST - Hands on making Jade Oolong in Alishan

2012 TOST has a two day hands on making Jade Oolong in Wang Ting Tea Factory.   Wang's couple are very generous to open up their tea garden and also their tea plant for our members to have a great working environment and a good experience.  Of course, without our instructor, Master Steve Huang, this learning session won't be any possible. Please click on the Youtube video and be shared with our friends who were working hard up in Alishan...from the garden, plucking, solar withering, indoor withering and fluffing, panning, drying till rolling...

Sunday, February 17, 2013

2012 TOST - TRES TungTing Sub Station

We have arranged a  quick visit to the TRES - Tung Ting Sub Station, where an advanced lab is installed here to help control the pesticide safety for our tea farmers. The day we visit, is the big moving day for Steve Huang's office... We realized how busy they are...yet, Steve still manages to receive our TOST friends and also have his lab specialists to guide us to see how the lab is functioning.  Food Safety in tea is so important, and we are glad to see how the TRES is working to help the farmers to carry out good practices.

2012 TOST - Visit ShanLinSi tea district

Max Wu is a good friend who owns his tea garden in ShanLinSi. We have planned to see the leaf plucking and tea making here on 10/25/2012.  Due to the long drought, the winter crop in this tea district has been delayed for another week.  Max did call us to check whether we should change our plan... well, here we come to visit a friend and have his teas tasted in the high mountain.  Along the way to Max's tea garden, our friends have enough surprise to eyewitness so many tea gardens on those steep slopes.

2012 TOST - Visit National Craft Research & Development Institute

On the way to Tang Yuan in Puli, we decided to add one more stop for our friends to see some tea ware developed by National Craft Research & Development Institute

2012 TOST - Visit Tang Yuan on 10/25/2012

Here we come to Tommy and Sunny's place!  Tang Yuan has a tea baking studio where Tommy is doing his tea baking.  Tang Yuan also has a few corners with different setup for tea ceremonies.  The Tang's family are all involved in presenting various tea ceremony for our members.  We have requested a tea cupping session in the kitchen counter for our friends to understand the teas by the array of baking from lightly, medium and heavily... We got to learn the teas that grown and made in Chilai Mountain and baked by Tommy.  We have great time of group learning here in the Tang Yuan, and our hearty appreciation to Tang Family.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

2012 TOST - Visit SanHsia Tea District

"Taiwan PiLoChun and Taiwan Dragon Well"? Oh yes! Not to doubt, they are from right here.
This small and unique tea district, Sanhsia is about 30 minutes away from Taipei.  (There is a big coffee chain in Taiwan has worked out a program to have its brewed coffee beans transported to here to be recycled in the local tea garden as its organic fertilizer. In exchange, the coffee chain is using the tea from the district. 
On 10/26 morning, we visit Mr. Lee again.  The Lee's family are very kind to open their factory and tea garden for our TOST members to study here in the past few years.  Mr. Lee is working on ISO22000 for the tea plant, and we hope it will be soon materialized.

2012 TOST - Visit Dashi Old Tea Factory

This old tea factory is a must see place on your study Taiwan's tea history. We are so lucky to be able to visit this Sashi Old Tea Factory before their grand opening. Mr. Lin is very generous to guide us to tour around, also he and his team are well prepared to have the afternoon tea for our friends. So many nice photos for you to carefully review.

2012 TOST - visit TRES Headquarters

10/26/2013, Norman Shu, the President of Taiwan Tea Manufacturers' Association (TTMA) is waiting at the TRES Headquarters for our arrival to this most important R&D center of Taiwan tea industry.  Director Chen of TRES (Taiwan Tea Research and Extension Station) has been in Vegas with us at the 2012 World Tea Expo.  He greets our TOST friends with a great arrangement of touring the facilities and also a series of tea cupping.  We are proud of TRES and it is indeed one of the great corner stones for Taiwan tea industry since 1903.  So many successful varietals are developed from this team, and also the continuous training and education programs for the farmers and tea factories to improve their craftsmanship and stay competitive is just amazing. By far this 2012 TOST has visited Wenshan Branch, Yuchih Branch, TungTing Substation and then we finally are here at the headquarters.  (*We have asked Director Chen to consider to give TOST a hands on workshop in this great facility in the near future.)

2012 TOST - Food Safety, Ecology and Technology

We are very grateful to I-Mei Foods/ Mr. Luis Ko's invitation.  In the past TOST programs, we have not visited any food facility other than tea factories.  Due to TUF's 9/15/2012 event in Los Angles, we got the honor to meet with Mr. Ko, who is the CEO of I-Mei Foods, one of the most successful food companies in Taiwan.  We are very impressed with his keynote presentation: Food Safety, Ecology and Technology.  Here we come to learn from the best!