Taiwan’s High Mountain (Alishan) Tea from Costco

Posted: October 22, 2014 in tea
Tags: , , , , , , ,

I purchased the tea from Costco in Taiwan.  Asia has a dearth of Costco locations so a visit to Taiwan would not be complete without a stop at my favorite American big box warehouse.  Teas are one genre of drink where cons are plentiful.  It’s hard for the industry to guarantee the supply actually originates out of the area specified on the box.  Taiwan recently went through a big backlash over certain tea companies importing cheaper teas out of China, exporting to Thailand only to change the paperwork and importing it to Taiwan.  They do this as the currently supply cannot meet demand so the China imports will have paperwork to show it originating not out of China so they can mix with their goods or sell to unsuspecting consumers.

I love Costco for the fact their purchasing department is large and suppliers don’t dare upset the status-quo.  Suppliers jump through hoops to sell at Costco which protects the customers with their generous return policy.  I trust Costco teas to be real and authentic, exactly as advertised on the box.  The tea industry is rife hard sell tactics as soon as you start sampling their wares leaving a bad taste in your mouth.  Costco makes the purchase process ideal.  There’s no need to sample it.  If you dislike it at any point in time, bring it back for a refund.  No other retailer can show the same faith in their products and supply chain.

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nice box

If you chose to buy this tea outside of Costco, it’s $40USD for 150 grams

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500gram packs

This is typical of higher quality tea leaves, it arrives rolled up into little balls.

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Taiwan’s high mountain teas are known for a milk after taste.  It’s fragrant as one expects Taiwanese teas to taste and it does carry the milk after taste that is prevalent from teas out of this region.  The only problem with the Costco variety, twigs.

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High end teas lack twigs.  Costco’s Sun Link Sea high mountain spring teas have an abundance of twigs.  In typical Costco fashion, customers get a very high end product for a low price.  The supplier may be providing the factory seconds as this is the first occurrence of a high end tea purchase where twigs are prevalent.

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It’s a great value for tea drinkers.  I can get 4-5 steeps out of this tea before the throwing it to the trash.  Fragrant fruit nose with a touch of bite.  I love the milk aftertaste.  It’s a trust issue when one purchases tea from Costco.  I’m tired of overpaying at the tea vendors around town.


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