Updated: Apr 4, 2020
I tasted yellow tea much later than any other teas. I did not know what to expect and the first yellow tea I wrote about made me question if my Chinese let me down and I bought a good green tea from Huangshan (Yellow Mountain).
Later I tried Junshan Silver Needle and I was convinced that it was a ‘better’ example of yellow tea as it was distinctively different from a green tea. This one looked considerably different from both of them and its taste was sweeter than Huo Shan Huang Ya but not as flavoursome as Junshan Silver Needle.
Jin Zhai yellow tips also come from Anhui, where yellow tea was originated. I discussed the labour-intensive process of making yellow tea here. It is worth remembering that due to the long time the yellow-tea processing (yellow sealing) takes, most cultivators tend to make green tea which is easier to make. While yellow tea lost popularity, masters who know-how to make yellow tea also disappeared with their knowhow and recipes. Today, only a handful of masters can process yellow yea and genuine yellow tea is extremely rare. I’ve read about a couple of warnings that some fine green teas are marketed as yellow tea by some cunning sellers who would like to fetch higher prices.
This tea had a nice sweet taste and I could see some fuzz on the dried leaves which were of different colours (green, brown and some dark yellow). The tea liquor was bright and clear yellow.
What is your favourite yellow tea?
Origin: Anhui Province
Harvest time: 2019
Leave colour: Brown, green and dark yellow buds and leaves with occasional fuzz
Liquor colour: Clear and bright yellow
Tea aroma: Fresh and floral
Tea taste: Sweet and delicate
Steeping/brewing: You can use 90°C water temperature and steep for up to one minute in gongfu style or up to three minutes in Western-style. You can brew the leaves many times (until the taste is lost). To each infusion add additional time.
Shelf life: 18 months (to improve shelf life store the sealed tea leaves in a dry, dark place with low temperatures)