Leaf Type: White
Where to Buy: Life in Teacup
Production Year – 2012
Production Season – Spring, first day havest
Production Region – Fujian, Fuding County
Learn more about this tea here.
I can always count on Life in Teacup to offer some of the very best teas … and this Bai Hao Silver Needle – also known as Yin Zhen – is a perfect example of what I mean by that. The dry leaves are so beautiful with the coloration ranging from pale green to silvery white, and each needle is soft and covered with fluffy fuzz. The aroma of the dry leaf is soft, with notes of flower and hay.
The flavor is delightful. On the Life in Teacup website, there is a short discussion on brewing this tea using boiling water … this is something I’ve not tried (or if I have, I don’t recall having tried it!) I’ve always used a lower temperature, but today I was feeling a little rebellious and while I wasn’t feeling quite so courageous to try boiling water, I did turn up the heat just a little, using water brought to 185° instead of the customary 160° that I usually would use for a silver needle. The flavor is stronger … but not too strong. But … it certainly is no longer the “delicate” flavor that I’d expect from a silver needle.
And while I have a great appreciation for the delicateness of a white tea, I like the slightly bolder flavor of this cup using a higher temperature. Maybe next time, I might even try boiling water on my white tea!
As it is, though, I’m finding this to be quite delightful. The flavor is sweet and vegetative … but not a green tea vegetative taste. It’s more like the flavor of sweet flowers and hay … similar to the fragrance I enjoyed from the dry leaf. There is an earthiness to this as well … and I find that the earthiness here is where I notice the biggest difference between the lower temperature and higher temperature brewing water. The earthiness really comes out with the hotter water.
There are subtle notes of fruit to this cup as well, and I notice that as I continue to sip, the fruit notes become more distinguished. Overall, the cup is sweet, refreshing and light … but with a fullness to it that I find really satisfying.
If you are one who generally finds white teas to be too soft or delicate in flavor, I recommend trying a slightly higher temperature … this really brings out the flavor, and I am not noticing any bitterness or scalded tea taste from the higher temperature.
A really enjoyable tea experience – thanks to Life in Teacup!
Anne started her journey with tea as a casual drinker and became more serious about her tea drinking when she realized that she couldn't drink coffee. Shortly thereafter, she started becoming obsessed with the beverage and she started creating small-batch, artisan blends of tea that she sold online as LiberTEAS. After a few years, she realized she wasn't cut out to be the sole proprietor of a business so she closed LiberTEAS and started reviewing teas online. She met Jennifer through another blog that they both reviewed for and they decided to start their own review blog. This review blog!
Throughout her journey as a tea reviewer, she discovered 52Teas and became enamored with the idea of creating a new tea every week. When the founder of 52Teas decided he wanted to move on, he offered the business to Anne but knowing that she wasn't cut out to be a sole proprietor, she instead offered the company to her oldest daughter who employs her as the Mad Tea Artist for 52Teas!