26 Local Teas

26 Local Teas

A map of where teas are grown in Taiwan (Source: Starbucks)

I found some local teas at Starbucks in China and Taiwan.

 

Here’s a video about their local tea offerings:

 

 

In Taiwan, there’s 台灣在地茶 (zài dì chá), literally Taiwan local tea.

 

阿里山烏龍茶 Alishan Oolong Tea

紅玉紅茶 Ruby Black Tea

碧螺春 Bi Luo Chun Green Tea

東方美人 Oriental Beauty Oolong Tea

 

Chinese character: 阿
Chinese character: 里
Chinese character: 山
Chinese character: 烏Simplified Chinese: 乌
Chinese character: 龍Simplified Chinese: 龙
Chinese character: 茶
Simplified
Note that black tea is called 紅茶 (hóng chá), red tea, in Chinese.

 

Oolong, 烏龍, is literally black (烏, wū) and dragon (龍, lóng).

 

阿里山 (ā lǐ shān) is a well-known scenic mountain in Taiwan. A folk song about Alishan that refers to the beautiful young girls and strong young men of a native tribe is popular and also well known in China and several foreign countries.

 

Part of the lyrics say: 高山青,澗水藍,阿里山的姑娘美如水呀,阿里山的少年壯如山呀 (gāoshān qīng, jiàn shuǐ lán, ālǐ shān de gūniáng měi rúshuǐ ya, ālǐ shān de shàonián zhuàng rúshān ya). Translation: Mountains are green, creeks are blue, girls of Alishan are beautiful like water, young men of Alishan are strong like mountains.

 

This reminds me of the citizens of Garrison Keillor’s Lake Wobegon, a place “where all the women are strong, all the men are good-looking, and all the children are above average.”

 

And the following are the local teas in China:

 

星巴克白牡丹茶 Mudan White Tea

星巴克金萱乌龙茶 Jinxuan Oolong Tea

星巴克碧螺春绿茶 Biluochun Green Tea

 

龙 is the simplified form of 龍. It’s easy to picture 龍, especially the right side of the character, as a dragon tail with pointy spikes. The simplified dragon, 龙, on the other hand, looks very much like 尤 (yóu). So that reminds me of 尤魚 (yóu yú) or 魷魚 (yóu yú), meaning squid.

 

The following are five ways to express the idea of being local. Which one to use depends on the context.

 

在地 (zài dì), 當地 (dāng dì), 本地 (běn dì), 本土 (běn tǔ).

 

I have a friend who loved Starbucks and frogs. So one year I had a Starfrogs apron made for her. I hope I won’t get a call from the legal department of Starbucks!

I have a friend who loved Starbucks and frogs. So one year I had a Starfrogs apron made for her. I hope I won’t get a call from the legal department of Starbucks!

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