The Treasure Green Tea Company’s Emerald Silver, Gu Shu Yunnan Black, and Xiaguan Pu-erh Xiao Tuo Cha | Shop & Tea Review

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Tea received at a discount for review

Treasure Green green black puerh spoons

When I visit a new place, I can’t help but scout out tea shops. While in Vancouver, Canada, I had the opportunity to visit Treasure Green Tea Shop. Treasure Green advertises themselves as the “first authentic Chinese tea shop in Vancouver”, opening in 1981.

When I entered the store, I was greeted by Olivia, whose father opened the tea shop over thirty years ago. The shop itself had a lovely traditional tea shop vibe with shelves filled with teapots, gaiwan, teacups, and tins of teas! Olivia is a second generation tea master and is well versed in tea since she had the opportunity to learn about tea firsthand.

Olivia and I were able to sit down and drink tea and she spoke to me about her tea shop and the various teas that they offer. I find that a great way to learn about a company is for them to introduce me to what represents their brand best. I left the shop with a handful of teas that I can’t wait to share.

Let’s go!

 

The Treasure Green Tea Company: Treasure Green’s Emerald Silver

Treasure Green Emerald Silver dry

Description: “Very fine and delicate leaves produce a silky sweetness like no other. An exclusive Treasure Green tea grown in the mountainous regions of Anhui Province, enjoy soft grassy flavours with a hint of nuttiness.”

Review: As per the recommendations from Olivia, she suggested that I put the tea in the freezer to keep it fresh, so that is what I did. When I opened the tea pouch there was a strong sweet, earthy and mossy smell that I didn’t expect! The dry forest green leaves were thin, twisted, and small.

After steeping, the dry leaves expanded slightly and there was a mildly fresh grass aroma. The leaves became an emerald green which matched its namesake. The liquor was a light-yellow green with some light dusting of hair from the leaves on top of the liquor.

Treasure Green Emerald Silver wet

The flavour was a nice clean taste, that started with grassiness and which developed some savoury notes near the tail end. There was no astringency in the liquor. The flavour was very similar during the second infusion, with the liquor becoming a brighter yellow and carrying some mild bitterness at the end of the sip. It even had some dark earthy notes intermixed within.

However, I found that the third infusion was sweeter and that the grassy notes had disappeared. The recommendations had suggested increasing the temperature after the third infusion but I felt that by then the flavour was spent. Overall, I enjoyed the second steep best because there was some nice intermixing of flavours (3/5 rating).

 

The Treasure Green Tea Company: Gu Shu Yunnan Black

Treasure Green Yunnan Black dry

Description: “Rich and velvet-y smooth, this complex tea combines full-bodied texture with subtle hints of sugarcane sweetness and citrus notes. Its full golden leaves come from over 250 year old trees, which offer persistent and complex flavours throughout each brew.”

Review: One of my favourite type of Chinese teas are Yunnan black teas because I love the sweet cocoa notes that they tend to have. So, when Olivia suggested this one, I knew that I had to bring it home to try!

The first thing I noticed right away, compared to some of the Yunnan black teas that I have had in the past, is that these fuzzy leaves were mostly orange compared to just having orange tips! The smell of the dry blend was a mixture of cinnamon, baked bread, and cocoa.

Treasure Green Yunnan Black wet

The leaves became a rich milk chocolate brown, and I was able to see that there was actually a fair bit of buds with some larger leaves. The smell stayed the same and reminded me of a dessert. The liquor was a tan yellow, which was also different than I am used to, because in the past, the liquors were more reddish-brown.

The label said that the tea could be steeped up to three to four times, so that is the parameters I stayed with. The first steep was very nice and earthy, with some underlying sweetness. There was no bitterness in the liquor. I was happy when during the second infusion, a rich cocoa flavour developed with nutty undertones.

During the third and fourth infusion, the flavours were less earthy and were sweeter. Additionally, the liquor became more reddish and there was some lingering astringency during the tail end. By the fourth infusion, the flavour was very weak. I enjoyed the second steep the best because it had a nice profile of flavours and was delicious and comforting (4/5 rating).

 

The Treasure Green Tea Company: 1993 Xiaguan Pu-erh Xiao Tuo Cha

Treasure Green Xiao Tuo Cha dry

Description: Each ‘Xiao Tou Cha’ (mini tea cake) is hand-pressed and individually wrapped in rice paper, cellared, and aged in Xiaguan, Yunnan where they are well-known for producing top quality Tou Cha. The great care taken in the storage process contributes to its full-bodied rich and woody flavour [.]”

Review: While I have always seen tuo chas around, I actually have never brewed one myself! The closest that I’ve done is are tea balls such as,white2tea’s Grandpa’s Shu Puer. However, one thing to note about this is that it is a vintage tea from 1993! So, I was equally excited and nervous because it is such an old tea that has been carefully cared for all these years!

The tuo cha was wrapped in a small piece of rice paper and was a dark brown, almost black, with a few specks of lighter brown. It was pressed very firmly and had some mild deep wet forest smell. After I added in the tuo cha and the water, little bubbles came to the surface and a trail of reddish brown liquor formed around it.

Treasure Green Xiao Tuo Cha wet

After steeping the first time, the liquor was almost a rose gold colour and had very mild earthy flavours that lingered. As I continued to steep, the liquor became more of a reddish brown and the flavours quickly developed throughout the steeps. The main flavours that I noticed were sweet, earthy and rich. The liquor was smooth and thick and coated the mouth which meant that there was a strong lingering flavour.

The more that I continued to infuse, the darker the colour of the liquor became. By the fourth infusion, the colour was a burgundy colour and reminded me a bit of a red wine. The flavours became more like damp earth – musky and nutty – and some astringency developed.

I steeped the tea a total of seven times, and the tou cha was still very much one piece still. However, that is when I realized that there was mooncake in the house, and I knew this tea would fit perfectly with it because of how rich mooncake was. I have to say, it was an amazing pairing. I found this to be a very lovely tea to sip on because of how smooth it was. I really enjoyed it and it was such a treat (3.5/5 rating).

 

Final Thoughts

Treasure Green Xiao Tuo Cha giawan

Overall, I am very happy with the teas I bought. Olivia was a lovely helper while I was at the shop and was very patient and explained everything in great detail. I would recommend dropping by the shop and seeing what you might discover! Who knows, maybe you’ll find a treasure!

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