Unique seasonal black tea from the oldest tea forests in Yunnan with floral notes, crisp vegetal aftertaste and bright body. . . .
AS FEATURED BY Andrew Zimmern’s
Quarterly Subscription box #ZIM02
Master Han is collaborating with co-founding member Master Zhou of the Zhenyuan Dongsa farmers cooperative to bring us this wild-picked black tea. Master Zhou wild forages from trees between three hundred and five hundred years old to bring us this rare and striking black tea. Every edition we try is an incredible and powerful reflection of the unique terroir of Qianjiazhai, and a testament to how fine and evocative Yunnan black tea can be. Master Zhou recently started making black tea from his maocha, and calls the tea nu’er hong, or “Daughter’s Black Tea” to mark his only daughter’s marriage last year.
Master Han speaks about the cooperative’s wild picked tea
This unique black tea is closer to a sheng pu’er in its perfumed florals, crisp vegetal aftertaste and bright body. Yet, it is definitively a black tea in its cream and chocolate notes. A tea like this challenges the hold fast lines between categories and in doing so, challenges our palates with new pairings.
As this tea steeps out, it becomes a true textural experience combining the woody forest flavor of wild Yunnan with the rocky mineral flavor of the Ailao mountains of QIanjiazhai. Herbaceous notes come through as a nod to the medicinal herbs growing around the wild tea trees in Qianjiazhai.
Date of Picking:April 2015
Location of Picking:Qianjiazhai forest region near Mengsong Village, Xishuangbanna. Altitude 2100 meters.
What Was Picked:Young leaves and buds from 300yr - 500yr old wild trees
Quantity Acquired:Our initial purchase was 18 pounds.
Brewing Golden Fleece, a similarly wild-picked Yunnan Black
Gongfu Brewing: Use 4g of leaves for a 5-6oz gaiwan or yixing pot. Heat the gaiwan or pot with boiling water and pour out. Add leaves, rinse leaves with boiling water for less than a second. Use this steeping to heat cups and pour over yixing. Steep each round for 2-3 seconds, increasing time by 3 seconds each steeping after the third steeping. Enjoy at least 15 infusions.
Western Brewing: Use 4g of tea (2T) in 6-8oz of fresh-boiled (205°F) filtered or spring water. Steep for 30 seconds in a brew basket or equivalent. Enjoy many infusions. Add 10-15 seconds with each steeping, or to taste.
Iced Tea (Cold Brewing)
Use about 4 grams of tea for every 12oz of water. Combine with room temperature water in a covered vessel and refrigerate for 8-12 hours. Enjoy!
Iced Tea (Flash Chilled)
Use 1TB (5 grams) of tea in a 6-8oz vessel. Steep for 1 minute with filtered boiled water. Fill a martini shaker (or equivalent) with ice, then add brewed tea and shake until well-chilled (usually 10-30 seconds). Pour out through martini-shaker top over fresh ice in a new glass and serve.