It's almost time to say goodbye to the Year of the Rat. Every 60 years of Rat (庚子年) for the past several hundred years has been recorded as blighted with bad news; such as earthquakes, wars, diseases and sadly this past year Covid-19. So, we look positively forward to the upcoming Chinese New Year of The Rabbit on the 12th February, 2023 which brings the promise of peace and success.
Chinese New Year is the East’s version of Christmas in the Western countries. It is the longest holiday in the whole year. All family members are gathered to have a large dinner in the Chinese New Year's Eve, or 圍爐. Many traditional dishes must be included as good luck, such as fish, pork, dumplings ie, "Buddha Jumps Over the Wall", 8-Treasure Rice, etc. Eating so many rich dishes, can be heavy on digestion, conveniently, pots of accompanying tea always served at the same time, major function of degreasing (breaking down fat in the meal).
Traditionally high mountain oolong is the most popular tea historically for Chinese New Year in Taiwan High mountain tea is from a high altitude farm over 1,000-meter above the sea level. Because of its high altitude, the sharply different temperatures between day and night provide the best environment for plants to grow and sleep, which create the best quality natural oolong tree leaves. Formosan Farms Alishan High Mountain Oolong farm is located at 1,500-meter above the sea level; famous for its scenery, a place of the sunrise and cloud-sea, the natural moist and dry environment is perfect for oolong tea trees. Growing in such a stunning natural environment, Alishan High Mountain Oolong needs no complicated processing, but just through a development of light fermentation at a 15% level, and naturally dry the leaves. Not just the light but rich aroma of high mountain oolong is ideal for a traditional big Chinese dinner, but also it provides a beautiful meaning of "climbing high (步步高升)" as the sunrise.
After the big family dinner, there is the desert and tea time for the most exciting "Red Envelop" (紅包) moment. Kids and elders can get Red Envelop with money in it, meaning the money for slowing down the aging. It was told the Red colour could get rid of every bad thing, so wearing red, eating red (cake), drinking red (tea), and get Red Envelop....Red brings good luck in the new year, while gets rid of bad luck in the past. Red tea, such as the most precious indigenous tea, Taiwan Native Mountain tea, is believed to enhance the body energy with the best luck. Formosan Farms Taiwan Native Mountain Tea farm is located in the most famous Sun Moon Lake in the centre of Taiwan. It is "Purple-Bud" tree with big leaves for the best taste as 100% fully fermented black tea. Because the farm's tea trees are mostly 180~200 years old, the tea is smooth and calm for young and old family drinking in the late evening (no worries of sleeping problems).
These two typical "Mountain" teas are traditionally popular in Taiwan for the Chinese New Year family reunion. Try our special Alishan High Mountain Oolong with a slight longan-wood roast, as Mr. Chien's family farm's tradition. The best quality Formosan Farms High Mountain & Taiwan Native Tea Leaves is available in the UK via an easy click.
We wish everyone can get rid of the bad Year of Rat and expect the good luck soon!