A cake with all the floral sweet crispness and spice of a fine Yunnan white, and the nuance of clove and malt coming through as the tea matures. . . .
Our search for the most flavorful and intriguing silver needle white tea brought us to this beautiful white cake, pressed for aging. A growing number of tea masters in China are becoming interested in the aging potential of white teas, as they have been observed to deepen in flavor and unfold into a sweeter and more lingering aftertaste than a conventional white tea.
This 2011 cake still exhibits all the fresh qualities we love about Yunnan silver needle. It is floral like honeysuckle and lilac, but balanced by a certain green grassiness and the signature silky texture and cinnamon spice notes of Yunnan budset teas. Yet, being pressed into a cake and allowed to begin aging has introduced other intriguing and harmonious flavor profiles.
There is a crisp alfalfa quality tempered by a malty flavor like bread or semolina pasta, along with a darker and more lingering aftertaste that hints at nutmeg and rosewater. These additions make our Aged Yunnan Silver Needle Cake one of the most intriguing and promising white teas we have tried.
Note: cake size is 357g, or 12.6 ounces.
Date of Picking:2011
Location of Picking:Xishuangbanna, Yunnan
What Was Picked:Silver needle bud material, picked and steamed, then pressed into 357g cakes.
Quantity Acquired:Eight Bricks
Sourcing Agent(s):Wang Yanxin
Recommended Brewing: Use freshly boiled filtered water or spring water. Limit infusions to six ounces or less. Use 5 grams of leaf for a full six ounce infusion. Steep for 20 seconds with 190 degree water. Reduce steeping to 15 seconds for the second infusion, and then 25 seconds for infusions 3-5. Add time in five second intervals after the fifth infusion. A gaiwan is recommended, but a small mug with a covered brew basket will work as well.