Single Origin Tea Producer: Mr. Lin of Che Shi, Anxi, China

Previously the village doctor, Mr. Lin — a trained physician from a family with generations of single origin tea producers and farmers — gave up his medical practice one day upon realizing that the tea-drinking villagers were just too healthy to need his services. He went back to tea farming with zeal, and decided that he would make his mark in other ways.

Discontented with just having grown a true, high mountain, organic Tieguanyin oolong (most organic teas grow on low, flat areas), he has now ambitiously decided to build the first biodynamic tea farm on the highest hill top in his village. Home of the original Tieguanyin, the varietals that grow at his village are the original versions with the best aroma and body. Still not content to leave it at that, he cross hybridized and created a Yellow Gold Tieguanyin Hybrid called Gold Guanyin, which he made into Golden Robe and Red Guanyin.

His plants are are not only organic; they are are grown in traditional methods. For example, using sheep manure for fertilization instead of chemical fertilizers that other organic farmers use. He chooses plots of lands that have the best slope and water run down, and will not allow any crops to be grown nearby neighboring crops fields, such as rice paddies. Mr. Lin was elected Mayor of his village recently, and he leveraged his power by bidding for the most sought after hilltop to grow his biodynamic farm.

Traditional farmers like Mr. Lin, who innovate out of understanding how to make quality tea, rather than relying on machinery and convenience, are truly rare artisans nowadays who deserve our support and patronage!

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