Category : Tea-producing countries

Rock tea: a mysterious name

Rock Teas

Last week I wrote about “rock teas”, because I had just returned from that region of China. When you ask local farmers where the name comes from, some talk about the fact that the tea must be rocked at a particular stage during the processing. But others draw an analogy between the tea’s smooth flavour, its minerality and strength, and the amazing rocks around which the camellias grow.


Posted in Country : China by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags : ,

Da Hong Pao: a legendary oolong

blog-24-10-2014

In China there is a very famous group of teas called “rock teas”. These semi-oxidised teas come from Wu Yi Shan, a mountain range in the north of Fujian province. The best known is Da Hong Pao. You have to taste it at least once in your life to realise what an exceptional tea this is. It has a rare strength and length in the mouth, yet remains subtle. It is fruity, toasted, woody and sweet at the same time.


Posted in Country : China by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags : , , ,

The origins of “lapsang souchong”

blog-17-10-2014

Calling all smoked teas connoisseurs! It is here, in a Chinese regional park in the north of Fujian province, that all lapsang souchongs were produced for two hundred years. The origins of this tea date back to the 19th century, when a high-ranking Chinese army officer requisitioned the tea factory that stood here before this one, to house his regiment, leaving the farmer no choice but to dry his tea outside, over burning spruce roots. Which is how smoked tea came about.


Posted in Country : China by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags : , ,

An isolated farm at the end of the world

blog-26-09-2014

During my childhood, I spent every summer in Brittany, on a small island without running water or electricity. I learnt to economise on resources. So I don’t feel out of place when I find myself at the end of the world, on a fairly isolated farm with no mod cons. I feel good. I don’t miss anything, other than what is superfluous.


Posted in Country : Nepal by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags : , ,

Pairing tea and cheese: the example of goat’s cheese

blog-05-09-2014

Pairing tea and cheese: the example of goat’s cheese Fresh goat’s cheese is one of my favourite cheeses, and I like going to the farm to choose mine. I prefer to accompany it with tea rather than wine. More precisely, a Premium Bao Zhong served at room temperature. To prepare it, first steep the tea for six minutes, then remove the leaves from the pot and leave it to cool for 30 minutes. Serve in small clear liqueur glasses. It will make an interesting change for your guests, and you will love the pairing: the tea does not overwhelm the subtle flavour of the cheese; on the contrary, it accompanies it, as the tea’s vegetal and floral notes make way for the milky, delicate animal qualities of the cheese. They make a fine match.


Posted in Country : Taiwan, Recipes by François-Xavier Delmas | Tags : ,

The author

François-Xavier Delmas is a passionate globetrotter. He’s been touring the world’s tea plantations for more than 20 years in search of the finest teas. As the founder of Le Palais des Thés, he believes that travelling is all about discovering world cultures. From Darjeeling to Shizuoka, from Taiwan to the Golden Triangle, he invites you to follow his trips as well as share his experiences and emotions.

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