If you have been drinking tea for a while you know that there are some teas that stick out above the rest. The teas that make you pause to take a closer look. The teas that make you remember why you drink tea in the first place. At Herbal Republic, we try our absolute best to make sure that all of the teas we offer to our discerning clients fit these criteria. We source and select our teas very carefully to make sure that every tea we sell is exceptional both in terms of quality and in overall experience. Even so, there are some teas that surpass even our wildest expectations. There are some teas that make even the most experienced and seasoned tea drinker take a step back and sigh with admiration and appreciation. Our Silver Needle white tea is such a tea.
Sourced from the Wuyi mountains in China, our Silver Needle tea has the flavour characteristics of high elevation, mountainous terroir. While the Wuyi region of China is known most commonly for producing some of the most famous oolong teas in the world, the region is also perfectly suited for the production of white teas. Wuyi’s rocky terrain and clean water lends rock mineral notes, full complexity, and clean profiles to the teas grown in the region. This tea is no exception. Characterized by honey sweetness, rock mineral and floral under notes, a thick body, and a pale yellow colour when brewed, our silver needle white is one of the finest examples of a single origin, pure white tea on the market.
When brewing this or any other white tea, it should be noted that with white and green teas in general, the lighter flavour profiles and more subtle notes are more delicate than the notes in, say, a black or oolong tea. The delicate nature of these subtle floral and sweet notes means that they can easily be “burned” off by using water that is too hot. Boiling water tends to be too hot for green and white teas which can lead a lot of people astray. Most tea drinkers would use boiling water for every type of tea that they drink as water’s boiling point is a good and reliable marker of when water reaches a certain temperature. While boiling water is perfectly suitable for black, oolong, and most herbal teas, when it comes to green and white teas, using boiling water can lead to bitterness and a flat flavour profile. If you’ve ever tried to make green or white tea at home using boiling water you will know that the resulting tea is often bitter and unpleasant to drink without some kind of sweetener. Green and white tea should be naturally sweet and this sweetness can be preserved if the water being used is at the correct temperature.
So, naturally the question becomes, “what is the right temperature for brewing green and white tea?” There seems to be a general consensus in the tea world that the proper temperature for brewing lighter teas is around 175 degrees fahrenheit. Most of us don’t have water thermometers on hand (nor the patience to measure the temperature of our water throughout the heating process) which means that we will have to try our best to guess when the water reaches this temperature. I have found that waiting 2 minutes after the water boils before brewing is a good general way to make sure the water has reached the right temperature. Boil the water, wait 2 minutes leaving the water in the kettle, and then proceed to brew your tea as normally.
Because of the fine nature of this tea, we highly recommend drinking it with others. Hosting a tea tasting party or get together can be very fulfilling and giving the chance for your guest to feel the leaves and watch the brewing process can be a great way to introduce people to the hobby. The tea has a complexity of flavour but is in no way difficult to drink. The sweetness and lightness on the palate, matched with the viscous tea liquor makes our SIlver Needle white tea a joy to sip slowly. The magic of high quality teas is that can be enjoyed multiple ways. Once you have a feel for the tea using a traditional hot brewing method, cold brewing it can be a great way to drink it too, and perfectly suited for drinking after a workout.
Regardless of what occasion or method you choose to drink this tea, we hope that it is enjoyed in good health. We are proud to offer our Silver Needle White tea to our clients and believe that it is a perfect example of teas coming from pristine regions that have been left free from the harms of pollution. Put simply, few other teas can reach the level of purity and quality that is offered in this example. Every once in awhile a tea sticks out above the rest. We believe this to be such a tea.