Tuesday, 15 March 2011

So... What would YOU call it?

Just following on from my previous post about Australian green tea, and whether it should be called sencha or not - Jackie, for example, seems to feel NOT - but what more exciting name than just 'Australian green tea' could be used instead?

For example: Oolong tea grown in New Zealand is called Zealong... Apparently the tea is very good but I am afraid the name doesn't really work for me; it just sounds kind of silly.

Moreover, what if there were more than one kind of tea being produced? For example, green tea grown in Australia but processed as for longjing, chun mee, bi luo chun? Clearly just calling the whole lot 'Australian green tea' wouldn't cut it - you would need to differentiate somehow. Would 'Australian XYZ-style tea' be adequate? I am a bit less sure now than I was when I wrote the previous post.

What do you think?


  1. Thanks for drawing attention to the post on Sencha; I have something to say about that (which I posted there).

    I feel similarly about other styles of tea. Zealong is a brand name: it cannot legally be used to refer, in general, to other New Zealand oolong (and who knows? we may see other New Zealand oolong in coming years, especially if Zealong is successful--I'd like to see this happen, personally).

    The Chinese naming scheme works well for identifying both style and region. For example, you have Anxi Qi Lan and Wuyi Qi Lan, and you also may have varietals familiar to Anxi or Wuyi grown in Taiwan. The same happens with Mao Feng and other green teas.

    Sometimes it's tricky...where do you draw the line? Upton Tea Imports solves this problem by identifying teas "in the style of Keemun" that are grown outside Anhui province. On RateTea.net I would classify these as Keemun, but I allow separate filtering for only Anhui Keemuns (or, for the purists, only those from Qimen county). I think the best results for everyone involve come when companies are clear and honest about where the tea is coming from.

    I do think though that as a general rule, if tea is assumed to originate from a particular location (i.e. with Keemun, Dragon Well, etc.), if the tea is produced outside of that reason, it is important to identify the region of origin of the tea.

    I personally like the diversification of teas. For example, I've found that I love Ceylon greens, and I love Chun Mee. I found young hyson from Sri Lanka and I absolutely loved it!

  2. My opinion is that it is nice to have the name of the country or distriction from where the teas come from. Australian Green Tea is a very very simple name. And it does not really say where in Australia it comes from. But calling it Australian Victoria (Green) Tea for example I would think is nicer. Like Darjeeling Castleton for example. You know it is from Darjeeling and you know from the garden of Castleton. Guess you got the point I mean right?

  3. I think using the original name of the tea, or saying "(name of tea) style tea" for eg. long jing style tea is a good name. But I think there should always be disclosure of country of origin, location/name of the farm, date or season of harvest.


Thanks for taking the time to comment... I appreciate it!


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