Hooty Tea Travels – Vancouver Tea February 2016

I’ve been MIA over a week because I was in Vancouver, my home town. I was in town for the wedding of a long time friend so I was quite busy as a bridesmaid.

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mmm wedding cupcakes.

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I was able to set aside one day to hit Vancouver Chinatown and do some serious tea shopping with my US dollar. Hey, it is a good time to buy from Canada right now! First off, I met up with some Vancouver local Steepster friends, which was super awesome! Tea friends also run into the issue of enabling each other into buying more tea.

I started at Treasure Green, I was able to briefly walk in last time I was in town, but I had an hour set aside this time. I was able to catch the owner this time so I had a good visit. The owner, Olivia, was good at matching one’s tastes to the teas she carried, but also considering what the entire group would like too. I walked in post-wedding hungover and all I wanted was shou and heicha, but my tea friends were more floral/lighter tea drinkers. We had a heicha session first (as I got there first), then had an excellent medium roast oolong prepared on the lighter side, which made everyone happy.

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Treasure Green has some really nice teaware, high and low priced. I was happy to find a cute small gaiwan!

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The tea selection is pretty diverse – they have rare oolong to flavored tea blends. You can go in for a gongfu session or take some tea home. I generally find diverse tea selections run thin on the high quality teas, however Treasure Green had a lot of solid pu’er and oolong.

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Rare teas? This one caught my eye, Thunderwood Oolong, which was oolong made from a tea tree that was hit by a bolt of lightning. I didn’t try it as it was certainly out of my budget. However, I now have a business plan that involves tea trees and tasers.

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Next up was The Chinese Tea Shop, one of my favorite tea shops. (ha, reused picture of the shop from my last visit, I was plenty full of tea and my pictures got blurry and awful)

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We sampled a Jin Jun Mei black tea and a 1990’s Xiaguan Sheng. Both teas were great and I somehow didn’t come home with either tea. We had a big group, so a large yixing pot was brought out.

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The most interesting experience was Daniel had a silver tea kettle. We didn’t do a proper side by side, but tasting from the silver kettle made the tea taste brighter and sweeter! The silver kettle was very expensive, so I don’t see myself owning one any time soon.

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After that entire afternoon of tea, I went out for poutine. A lot of poutine, I’m talking me, Tea Owl and Tea-hating husband ate a huge amount of poutine covered in either Montreal smoked meat or bacon/mushroom/pepper. I missed poutine.

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Vancouver Tea Haul

Haul time and this one is a doozy thanks to the Canadian dollar.

Treasure Green

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Aged Wild Shou Mei – It seems every time I find an aged white I snag it. This is a Fu Ding loose white of 2003/2010 material. I got a 100g, which turned out to be an insane amount volume wise. When I got home I immediately tried some and it is tasty. However, trying new teas is now on hold as after I got back I immediately came down with post travelling plague.

2009 Liu Bao Heicha -I thought I sampled this one, but I actually sampled the 2001 Heicha (which wasn’t in my price point but was flipping fantastic). I still wanted a heicha so I snagged this one which was priced well, tea drunk logic here.

Silver Jasmine Black – Black jasmine teas are uncommon, so when I see them I snap them up too. I just got a sample portion for this one. This jasmine black looks great as it has some gold tips.

2004 Superior Wuyi Aged Golden Buddha – Gorgeous packaging on this oolong. I was told this oolong is potent and rich and I upsell well while tea drunk.

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2010 Treasure Green Mini Waffle Shou Brick – I wanted a Treasure Green exclusive pu’er, and they have these waffle shaped cakes for a good price. They also carried bigger cakes as well as sheng. I just bought the shou, though now I regret also not getting a sheng one. Next time! Really pretty packaging on this pu’er too, I love the wrapper!

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Finally, I got yet another gaiwan. It isn’t on the website, but I only paid $10! This gaiwan’s design doesn’t wow me but the size and shape I love. It clocks in 75ml to the brim, around 65ml working room. It is a tall and narrow gaiwan so my small hands can deal with it easily.

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Chinese Tea Shop 

2013 Fu Ding White Tea Brick – Since I love their 2000 Fu Ding Bai Cha Aged white so much and that is sold out, I snagged 2 bricks of the 2013. Ya know, drink one now and tuck the other one away to age.

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2011 Moonlight White Pu’er Cake – I have had multiple people tell me this cake is good, like super honey god mode good. I’ll find out. I should of gotten just a sample, but hey cheap Canadian dollar!

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Finally, I got samples of 1992 Liu Bao, 1990’s Zhen Cang Loose Sheng (a wet storage!), and this interesting 1992 Aged Ban Sheng Shu tea that is a mix of sheng and shou!

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I also split a Changtai sheng with a tea friend. This turned out to be a killer deal thanks to this cake being cheaper than a US seller who carries it, plus money conversion.

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Total haul, pretty big. Money conversion? $80 saved. MUHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Yet again, I wish I had more time to see more shops but life got in the way. I intended to be in Vancouver longer but it just didn’t work out. Always another trip! I highly recommend fellow US tea drinkers to check out Canada’s tea scene right now!

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  • OMGsrsly

    It was so lovely to meet you! Thank you for sharing. 🙂

  • Geoffrey F. Norman

    I . . . would totally pay $30 for an oolong made from a tree that was struck by lightning.