Our Nantou Dong Ding is entirely handcrafted by Tea Master Gao Que of Pure Hearts Seeking Tea in Taiwan. Master Gao Que's family has been making tea for three full generations, a fact which clearly shines through in all of his teas. He takes extreme pride in producing teas of only the highest quality, which is evident with our Alishan Jinxuan. Upon examination of the balled tea leaves pre-brew, you get a real sense for how much care went into his tea. It’s color, size, spread, are all remarkably uniform. Further, you will find minimal breakage upon examination of the infused leaf. Master Gao Que tries to keep his prices relatively low by selling teas out of the first floor of his own home, the home he was born and raised in, to avoid fees for commercial real estate. He has been making teas for the past 15 years, and regularly judges at local tea competitions.
Master Gao Que only selects the best raw materials from gardens and growers he trusts based on relationships he has had in the industry himself for 15+ years, and which his family has had for generations. Gao Que buys his leaves from gardens throughout Taiwan based on the product he wants to make. After carefully choosing the best quality tea leaves from his suppliers, he handles the rest of the process himself, occasionally employing the aid of his wife and two daughters. His goal is always to create the truest expression of the teas which he makes (sometimes swimming against popular convention). Master Gao Que often creates better expressions of the teas from a given garden than the garden does itself (a lot of gardens in Taiwan just grow the leaves, don't actually prepare & perfect the tea), so we always like to give the most credit for Master Gao Que's teas to Master Gao Que himself.
Before devoting his life to tea Master Gao Que ran a printing shop for several years after graduating from college in Taiwan. One day he decided that he had had enough of the rat race, that the chemicals from his printing work were too harsh for his body, and that he wanted a simpler lifestyle. After he decided he wanted a change, he closed his business down inside of 24 hours, and moved back to the house he grew up in to start a business.