Saturday, January 29, 2011

Can anyone help me identify this tea?

A while ago, one of my mom's students gave her a small packet of tea as a gift. It was outstanding. It was a tightly-rolled green-colored leaf (greener oolong or green tea? it was unlike any other oolong or green tea I've had) with an intense floral aroma, but one completely unlike anything I have tried since. I've had Dong Ding that very slightly hinted at the aroma of this tea, but nothing else has even reminded me of it. The tea was outstanding, and the powerful aroma lasted through many infusions, even when using a relatively small amount of leaf.

I saved the wrapper in the hopes that someone could help me to identify it and possibly locate it again or something similar. I finally got around to uploading the pictures of the wrapper. I would be grateful if anyone could share any insight into what, if any, information is on the label.

Here's the wrapper:

And the other side:

Thanks in advance for any insights!


  1. The wrapper says "King of Tie Guan Yin" :D

  2. Those three big words are Guanyin Wang 觀音王. They mean "Guanyin King." It is a common marketing name for higher grade Tie Guanyin oolong.

    I'm pretty sure your bag lists the brand on it someplace but I couldn't see it in the photos.

    Good luck with your hunt :)

  3. The largest characters say "Guan Yin Wang", so I assumed this was related to Tie Guan Yin tea. A quick search on Baidu led to this wiki entry:

    The gist of it is that this name is usually given to premium kinds of Tie Guan Yin tea. In general, it's limited to the type of tea that wins first place in Anxi's Tie Guan Yin competition, though this is not always the case. Do the leaves in that article roughly match what you had?

    It's also mentioned here (under Guanyin Wang):

  4. My vote: 觀音王 Tie Guan Wang - Iron Goddess 'King'.
    King is a slightly higher grade / different style than other jade Tie Guan Yins.

  5. Ask the folks at Dream About Tea - I havs some teas from them in similar wrappings. Just a guess. Good luck!

  6. That makes sense...I'm reading up on this tea and this sounds like what it was.

    I unfortunately do not have a photo of the leaf, but it looks almost identical to the pictures I see of Guan Yin Wang, and reading the description, I'm pretty sure that's what it was.

    Thank you so much to everyone who replied!

  7. These are generic bags you can buy in tea malls in China by the hundreds. They do not identify the maker or anything -- the smaller (black) words are just a poem about tea. Most small time vendors (some of whom can sell very good tea) use these bags as customers purchase them, so there's no way you can tell what's in the bag by what the bag says.

    An equivalent would be if your local teashop here puts all their black teas in bags that say "Premium Black tea" without regard for what type/grade it actually is. This is what this bag is.

  8. Yeah, as MarshalN said, most of the bags are generic, and very often the other characters on the bags are poems and calligraphy for decoration purposes (like this one). Unless the logo is a famous shop such as Ten Fu (they claim their goal is becoming Starbucks of Chinese tea), usually the manufacturer is not famous in any large circle because there are so many of them, most manufacturers are small ones and each covers only a tiny small share of the market.