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Qianjiazhai Gu Hua Sun Dried Black

Qianjiazhai Gu Hua Sun Dried Black

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Master Zhou’s favorite harvest,
finished as a black tea.
The Cooperative uses traditional finishing techniques on their early autumn harvest, skipping a final roast for flavors that deepen with age. Notes of strawberry, steamed bun, cinnamon, and vanilla.
Autumn 2021 ♦ Mt. Ailao, Yunnan
Master Zhou’s favorite harvest,
finished as a black tea.
The Cooperative uses traditional finishing techniques on their early autumn harvest, skipping a final roast for flavors that deepen with age. Notes of strawberry, steamed bun, cinnamon, and vanilla.
Autumn 2021 ♦ Mt. Ailao, Yunnan
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Crafted by the Dongsa Cooperative

True zero-intervention wild tea, foraged from ancient tea forests in one of the most remote tea growing regions in the world.

The Dongsa Cooperative was founded to promote responsible stewardship of these tea forests and pass on old-school pu’er hand-crafting techniques that yield incredibly complex tea.
    • DATE OF PICKINGAutumn 2021
    • QianjiazhaiMt. Ailao, Yunnan
    • ELEVATION2140 m
    • Qianjiazhai AssamicaTea Varietal

    This is the first year this tea has ever been made. The Gu Hua harvest is an early autumn picking possible only in the cool high elevation mountaintops of Qianjiazhai, favored by Master Zhou for its fruity, rich flavor. In years past, this has been used exclusively for sheng pu’er. This year, a small portion was set aside to sun-oxidize as a black tea. The results are stunning! It has all the juicy flavor of the sheng pu’er but with a creamy nutty depth only possible in a black tea.

  • true
    50
    fresh strawberry
    true
    85
    steamed bun, whipped cream
    true
    70
    licorice, cinnamon
    true
    40
    vanilla
    false
    true
    rich, thick, buddy

    Tasting Profile

    • fruit - fresh strawberry
    • savory - steamed bun, whipped cream
    • spice - licorice, cinnamon
    • floral - vanilla
    • texture - rich, thick, buddy


Master Zhou also recommends:

  1. Hand Fired Black Tea Dragon Pearls
    Hand Fired Black Tea Dragon Pearls
    While the Li Family uses sun drying to bring out rich texture and spice in their sun dried black tea, they have recently started experimenting with a light roasting process, done entirely by hand over a special wood-fired wok. This brings out much sweeter flavors in the black tea. This Dragon Pearl is made with the Li Family's hand fired black tea, closer to a traditional Dian Hong than their Sun Dried Black tea, with savory notes of honey, walnut, fig and a warming hint of cinnamon and tulsi spice.
  2. 2021 Wild Crassicolumna Sheng
    2021 Wild Crassicolumna Sheng

    This tea is sustainably wild-foraged from ancient Camellia Crassicolumna (厚轴茶) tree, a close relative of tea native to Qianjiazhai. This year's tea is available both loose and in 100g cake pressings. Crassicolumna is naturally caffeine-free and rich in antioxidants. The giant leaves and buds picked from this wild-growing tree stock are allowed to gently sun dry without any heat processing to keep the most natural flavor. Wild crassicolumna trees can be anywhere between several hundred and over a thousand years old, and are incredibly tall and difficult to climb to harvest these precious leaves, but the rich nuanced flavor and lingering aftertaste is worth the effort. Master Zhou pressed the leaf material from part of this years harvest into 100g cakes and 205g Xiao Jin Gua perfect for aging and long term storage.

  3. 2020 Qianjiazhai Hand Fired Black
    2020 Qianjiazhai Hand Fired Black
    The Dongsa cooperative wild-forages the leaves for their hand-fired black tea from trees well over one hundred years old, growing on the cool high elevation slopes of the Ailao National Forest Preserve. The biodiversity and well established root stock makes for deeply nuanced and complex tea, normally reserve for pressing and aging as sheng pu’er. This experimental offering is a new project by the cooperative to hand fire over low heat in a wok for a more classic Dian Hong style. The application of heat makes this more closely related to other Yunnan Black, and indeed it shares a rich sweet potato thickness similar to our Yunnan Golden Fleece, but with Qianjiazhai’s signature tulsi complexity and touches of citrus, and florals.
  • 'However much moisture the tea wants to release, that is how much evaporates…. If you roast it at high temperatures, you are changing what it wants. The tea wants to hold on to a little moisture, but the [high] heat forces it out...'

  • 5
    6-8
    212
    20 seconds
    10
    5
    6
    212
    10 seconds
    2
    5
    12
    room temp
    8 hours

    Steeping Instructions

    Western

    5 g.6-8
    oz.
    use 212° watersteep 20 secondsresteep many times
    add 10 sec. each infusion

    Gongfu

    5 g.6 ozuse 212° watersteep 10 seconds
    add 2 sec. per steeping
    enjoy many steepings

    Iced/Cold

    5 g.12
    oz.
    use room temp. waterrefrigerate overnight
    8 hours
    add ice & enjoy

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