Chinese History of the White Tea & its Types

White Tea is one of China’s special treasures, made from the youngest and most tender hand-picked leaf tips and buds. The name “white tea” refers to the silvery-white hairs that cover the unopened leaf buds on tea plants, they give the plant a white appearance, but the drink itself isn’t white at all. Instead, it’s a pale golden yellow.

Due to amount of work involved in making it, this type of tea is also one of the most expensive teas in the world. In India, white teas are widely produced in Darjeeling as well as the Nilgiris. The cool mountain air and nutrient-rich soil conditions all bestow the tea plants with an exceptionally fragrant flavor profile.

White Tea Types:

White tea is minimally processed and is made from the unopened buds and occasionally the first shoot, of the plant. The most popular types of White Tea are White Peony and Silver Needle white tea. White Peony is made from the first and second tips of a tea stem and gets its name from the way the brewed leaves seem to bloom like the buds of the first flowers in springtime. Silver Needle is the most expensive of the White Teas.

white tea photographed

It is made only from the single tips of the tea stem which when dried, look like silver needles. The tea has a light yellow colour and refreshing taste and aroma. To make a white tea, the leaves are only withered and lightly rolled. As a result, the beverage is extremely light, pale-colored and is characterized by a mellow floral-fruity flavor.

Tea, be it green tea, black tea, white tea, or oolong tea, has antioxidants which can potentially deliver protection against a host of adverse conditions. Researchers found that white tea, more specifically, silver needle loose leaf white tea is one of the best natural remedies to look and feel young.

It also is known for keeping a check on blood glucose levels. So, drinking white tea on a regular basis helps reduce or possibly even prevents the symptoms of diabetes. White organic tea comes with lesser concentration of caffeine compared to other forms of tea available in the market. The low level of caffeine present in white organic tea makes it one of the best stress- relieving in the world.

White Tea & its Chinese History

Going back to the time of the Song Dynasty (960-1279 AD), white tea was historically produced exclusively in the Fujian province of China. This is still the primary production area, but now you will find white tea producers in Nepal, Taiwan, Thailand, Sri Lanka, and India. There are a handful of American producers as well.

White Tea & its Chinese History

Some tea experts and producers recommend brewing white tea for a shorter period (1-3 minutes) while others recommend a longer steep (nearing 5 minutes). This depends large on personal preference, as well as whether you’re using loose leaves or teabags.

Finally, white tea does better at lower temperatures than other types, so it’s not usually recommended to go over 180°F when you are heating your water. Scalding the delicate leaves will make for a bitter drink. Try Halmari Tea’s premium quality Silver Needle White Tea for a taste and aroma like no other.

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About trekkerp

Author of The Girl from the Woods and a Travel writer from India looking forward to collect quirky tales from around the world

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