Review: Teasatia White Peony

Bai Mu Dan Tea, Teasatia, White Tea Add comments
Raven’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"The fuzzy, sweetness of the bouquet follows in the wonderfully soft flow, touched with warm golden raisins and bamboo."
Raven’s Teaview: 8.1/10
Other Teaviews: Jamie gave it 8.5/10
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In the summer heat, trying to take my complexion from pasty white to gold, or at least sun-kissed, I couldn’t help find company in white tea’s pale allure and white peony seems to match the heat with its refreshing, easy air, so suited to summer breezes. Teasatia is new to me but apart from the snappy name, the company has a chic website and includes teas of each type. Sadly though, they've got their sunscreen, as they only ship within the United States. As perhaps my only chance to catch their rays, Teasatia’s White Peony seemed a rightly cup to cheers for a tan.

Despite a character suited to summer, the tea’s appearance could be the essence of fall from the assorted shapes, sizes and earthy hues of the leaves. Mostly a mix of cool brown shades, the whole leaves and stems are flat and curled, up to an inch and a half long, with a very light down. Frolicking amidst them, a few smaller needles add to the visual appeal which certainly starts to warm things up.

Getting into the tea, the bouquet is beautifully fruity. It is a wonderful welcome that almost does have a bronzing vibe. The scent has a soft dry leafiness that is a bit brown and twiggy, perfused with a light sweetness. As a result, it brings to mind nettles, thistles and dry heather from the almost floral. The sweetness spirits the fruitiness that is sun-kissed with a dried fruit goldenness that isn’t a definitive fruit, although it nods to dried apples, apricots and pineapple.

The sun is definitely on the rise but of course to bring on the shine, it’s to the brew. Teasatia kindly includes brewing suggestions on their site where they recommend steeping two teaspoons of tea for one minute at 167°F for the first infusion and greater than one minute for subsequent cups. So I followed along. From the clouds of the kettle, the tea emerges radiant, purely sweet with a kind of light yellow hue. The medium light bouquet warms as the fruitiness unfolds into cooked aromas of white grapes and golden raisins. Yet it’s a soft, innocent scent that seems more sweet than fruity as dry, fuzzy notes fall at its edges. The cup also reflects this fuzzy, sweetness, as the light flavour has a beautifully soft flow that seems like suede and clothes just out of the drier, although I can’t say I frequently nibble on my warm clothes. However, centering the sip, a tempting cooked golden raisin streams through the medium body to accent the soothing warmth with its sparkling sweetness. A light astringency tickles through, just enough to make it less refreshing, without being too noticeable, while it has a pleasing hold without being starchy. It finishes quick and sweet, leaving a light sweetness in one’s breath.

As the sun is still up, another infusion of the leaves for two minutes bursts into a darker, pretty golden yellow, almost with a touch of orange. The bouquet is more radiant than the first, floral and sweet. The scent has a petal tinged floral that’s spring like, making me think of magnolias and tulips to be quite lovely. This beams through a shade of rusty bamboo that accentuates the grapeyness of the scent from the floral notes. The flavour also rises with a wonderfully soft fullness. The medium body shines with a kind of light grain or starch, dabbled with ash and aglow with sweetness to have a satisfying weight without a dry taste. The flavour is a bit chestnut-like but reminds me more of soaked wheat or tapioca starch. This touch of starch with the sweetness also creates a nice milky or creamy quality, that reminds me of rice milk, when the tea cools. The tea is not so much refreshing or crisp as it is moist and supple, with a pleasing perk to punctuate the flavour. As it finishes with a light aftertaste, a flicker of itchiness builds in one’s throat over several sips but it’s hardly distracting.

Eclipsing the cup for a third brew, the cup still has a ray of sunshine with a pale ocher hue and just a hint of suede and sweetness to the bouquet. The flavour is quite mild, but the dryness increases enough to add definition to the light flavour that brings to mind thistles and warm cotton.

The sunny disposition of Teasatia’s White Peony certainly delights with its soft feel and splendid sweetness. It seems to have gotten its own bit of a tan that is slightly more oxidized than greener white peonies but it rewards with its golden complexion. Although I might not be any browner, perhaps a bit rosier cheeked, the tea’s pure sweetness and ease are enough to blush anyone’s cheeks

— To purchase Teasatia White Peony, 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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