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Tieguanyin tea, originated from Anxi in south China's Fujian province, is a famous Oolong tea named after the Buddhist saint Guanyin, or Goddess of Mercy. Like other Oolong teas, Tieguanyin¡¯s taste comes in between green tea and black tea.
Tian Ran Xiang teashop is an exclusive seller of Tieguanyin tea on Beijing' Maliandao street. The shop owner, Ms Sun, is a born in the town famous for this type of tea. When I visited the shop, she was drinking Tieguanyin tea, saying it helped her lose weight.
Back in Sun's hometown, there are many legend behind this tea. The most popular legend is about a farmer called Wei Yin. Wei voluntarily cleaned a temple in which had an iron statue of Guanyin. Touched by his kind heart, Guanyin appeared in his dream, telling him of a cave behind the temple, where a treasure awaited him. That treasure was the Tieguanyin tree.
At Tian Ran Xiang, I saw various colorful packages of Tieguanyin. Ms Sun also showed me some loose Tieguanyin. The leaves are rolled into small tubes and then dried, for simple storage and consumption. According to different quality, tea price varies from RMB 30 per 500g to over thousand yuan per 500g.
You can bargain with the owner, but she can't speak much English. So be sure to bring pen and paper.
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