Review: Butiki Teas Malawi White Peony

Bai Mu Dan Tea, Butiki Teas, White Tea Add comments
Geoff’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"If you're going to imitate something, one can't go wrong with Peony."
Geoff’s Teaview: 9.2/10
Other Teaviews: Vanessa gave it 8.6/10, Shaiha gave it 7.2/10
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This wasn't the first Malawi white tea I've ever tried. Several years ago - early on in my tea explorations - I stopped by a teashop that had a Malawi on the menu. It tasted like grape paradise. At the time, I went digging for other teas from there, but they were extremely difficult to locate. least a half-decade has passed since then, and African-grown teas have gained some well-deserved press. Thanks to Butiki, I had the opportunity to give Malawi a go once more.

The leaves for this looked like a Chinese Bai Mu Dan right down to the...well...leafy presentation. Say what you want about White Peony, it looks like someone took raked tree sheddings in Autumn and packaged them. I've been delightfully fooled by this appearance before. I will say this, though, they smelled lovely - grape-like and wildernessy. Kinda what I've come to expect from white teas other than Silver Needle variants.

Brewing instructions were a little heavier than usual whites with a recommendation of roughly a tablespoon per 8oz. of 185F water and a steep of two-and-a-half minutes. I had no argument with this approach. Naturally, I would've gone lighter, but these looked rather resilient.

The liquor brewed to a pale gold. Well, pale compared to most teas, but rather dark by the standards of other white teas. The aroma was lightly grassy with a faintly sweet residual; I expected a little more strength to the scent but no matter. Taste-wise, it delivered. It was light, slightly butter, fruity, sweet, and only slightly grassy. Definitely a White Peony. In fact, that might be its greatest strength AND weakness. It mimics the effect of White Peony so well that it doesn't have a discernibly unique character of its own. Unlike, say, Kenya's White Whisper, which looked like Silver Needle but differed considerably in taste. That said, if you're going to imitate something, one can't go wrong with Peony. I would happily imbibe it again.

— To purchase Butiki Teas Malawi 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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