Olivia's Trip to Xi Shuang Ban Na, Yunnan China
Treasure Green Tea Company’s Exclusive
Rare Collectable Pu-erh Tea Cake Collection
My trip in February 2014 to Yunnan was an once-in-a-lifetime experience. I started feeling excited, having just three days to plan the trip before my departure. I had to endure three connecting flights and a 24-hour journey before reaching Xi Shuang Ban Na, a stunningly beautiful region in Yunnan province in ultmost southeast China. Each breath of air was refreshing; backpacking up Nannuo and Yiwu mountains, meeting and learning from the tea masters.
Most rewarding was spending time with members of my Taoist family. By the time I arrived, they already had been there for over six months on a charity mission. During their stay, they were travelling from school to school, meeting thousands of children, not only to provide them with clothing and daily supplies, but more importantly, coaching them how to think wisely. Almost all the children were from families of farmers working and living on various mountains famous for tea in the area.
Through my Taoist connection, I was fortunate to meet these farmers. They responded to my love of tea by organizing several hundred farmers from all around the area to travel to a central meeting at the school, bringing in their best crop of premium tea in linen sacks. It was truly amazing to see the school auditorium filled with these sacks of tea.
The tea master and I spent days sorting and blending the tea into four grades: it was difficult as they were all premium teas. The tea masters and the Chief of the Yunnan Tea Institute exclaimed that these superior blends had never happened before. It was the first time that anyone had organized such a massive meeting of farmers bringing their best tea to one central location.
My next assignment was to locate a place to have these precious teas compressed into tea cakes. Hopping from factory to factory, I realized that the standard factory was not the ideal place for these teas to be processed. To ensure the purity of the blend I decided to compress the tea myself. The Tea Master and my Taoist family and I located a home on Nannuo Mountain, at high elevation, surrounded by beautiful scenery.
It was the perfect place for a novice like me to have hands-on experience learning how to compress a tea cake step by step. Each Ni Fei (ticket) that I placed inside the cake was handwritten by me: “Miu 妙” is the most premium tea cake sweetest aftertaste lingering aroma , next is “Pin 品” slightly fuller body, aromatic, and then “Xin 馨”.subtle smooth
There is a precious special blend named “Colourful Yunnan” that is also the provincial slogan. Yunnan is noted for its high ethnic diversity, with various ethnic groups widely distributed in the province, with their own colorful style of woven clothing and jewelry.
As a result of this rare event that had occurred these exclusive tea cakes are blends of premium pu-erh teas from the famous tea mountains of Yiwu mountain易武山, Nannuo mountain 南糯山, Bulang mountain 布郎山, Nanqiao mountain 南峤茶山, and Bada mountain 巴达山. These blend of tea cakes have an exceptional aroma, sweetness and smoothness.
I have brought back these tea cakes for my customers to enjoy. I hope these tea cakes will be treasured and appreciated: each sipping done with gratitude to the farmers and my Taoist family that made this truly once-in-a-lifetime possible.
Xi Shuang Ban Na, Yunnan China 西双版纳. Xishuangbanna Dai Autonomous Prefecture is located at the south end of Yunnan Province. It shares a boundary of 966 kilometers (619 miles) with Burma and Laos in the east, south and west. The six famous tea mountains in the prefecture produce some of the most highly regarded Pu-erh Tea.