Review: Canton Tea Co. Fuding Bai Hao Yin Zhen (Silver Needle White Tea)

Bai Hao Tea, Canton Tea Co., White Tea Add comments
Geoff’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"The flavor was crisp, buttery, a little bit on the garden side of plant-like, but overall pleasant."
Geoff’s Teaview: 8.2/10
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cantonzhinyenbaoI've had more than my fair share of white tea. Silver Needle is my all-time favorite, and - I must say - this is by far the furriest I've ever seen. Fuzz, in other food groups, is usually an indicator of something spoiling. With white tea, it's a sign of youth and vitality, and this offering from Canton Tea Co. had 'em in spades. All of the needle-rolled leaf buds were bountifully furry. I wanted to pet them. Heavy pet, even.

The natural aroma for this was quite strong, resembling a Bai Mu Dan on first sniff; fruit/floral tones with a mild sweetness. I was waiting for the inevitable herbal or vegetal quality to manifest, but it never did. The scent was delicate and delectable. I would concur with Canton that "melon" notes were present.

Recommendation per the vendor site stated to brew 1-2 tsp in 167F water for up to three minutes. I middle-grounded the measurement and went with a tablespoon's-worth. I figured I'd get maximum leaf-age that way, lending to a more robust brew. I was feeling daring...-ish.

The infusion manifested as almost colorless with yellow coronas at the base, sides and mouth. The scent was equally as light, indicated a hint of a floral presence, but the fruitier aspects were reserved; present but only peeking. The flavor was crisp, buttery, a little bit on the garden-side of plant-like, but overall pleasant.

A part of me thinks that this could have brewed for longer or at a higher temp. White tea is usually understated, true, but I've infused a good hearty bunch in my day. Or maybe my palate has changed for the deeper varieties, spoiled by Bai Mu Dan or Silver Tips. I don't know. Overall, this was a decent Silver Needle, it excels where it needs to. For anything extra, though, go for something fuller.

— To purchase Canton Tea Co. Fuding Bai Hao Yin Zhen (Silver Needle White Tea), or for more specific information on ingredients or the story behind this particular tea, click here to go directly to the manufacturer's web site.

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