Today we talk about Shui Xian tea in Fujian Oolong. Shui Xian tea can be divided into Northern Fujian Shui Xian and Southern Fujian Shui Xian in terms of origin, and the most famous Northern Fujian Shui Xian is Wuyi Shui Xian. At the same time, Zhangping Shui Xian represents Southern Fujian Shui Xian. Although they belong to the same category as Shui Xian tea, they are entirely different in appearance and taste.
Both Wuyi Shui Xian and Zhangping Shui Xian are produced in tea in Fujian Province. However, they are far apart, and there are differences in the growing environment and climate, which lay the foundation for the difference in their quality.
Wuyi Shui Xian originates from Wuyi Mountain in northern Fujian. Wuyi Mountain is a typical Danxia landform with an average annual temperature of 16℃ ~ 25℃ Celsius. Nature’s magic work has created a cool, humid climate surrounded by mountains and nine clear streams. Lush tea trees attached to the mountainside or between the rock walls, or caught in the cracks of the rocks, Wuyi Shui Xian tea relies on the natural environmental advantages here and slowly forms a unique quality, leaving a ” No tea more mellow than Shui Xian . ” said.
Zhangping Shui Xian originates from Zhangping in southwestern Fujian Province, where the annual average temperature is 18℃ ~ 28℃ Celsius, the forest coverage is about 78%, there are abundant water resources and good water quality, the climate is humid, the rainfall is high, and the soil is fertile, which is ideal for growing tea trees.
Shape and Taste
Wuyi Shui Xian is a strip-shaped tea with twisted leaf ends and a dark, oily color. The tea stems are cleaned to ensure the purity of the finished tea. The main aroma types exhibited are orchid, woody, etc. The aroma is more pronounced and subdued than Zhangping Shui Xian. Since the roasting process in Wuyi Mountain is one of the best, Wuyi Shui Xian has different flavors, such as light, medium, and high fire. Wuyi Shui Xian has an evident rock charm, and the tea soup is thicker and denser than Zhangping Shui Xian.
Zhangping Shui Xian’s roasting is generally lighter than rock tea. It’s the only tightly pressed tea in the oolong tea category. The tea is pressed with stems, which is more obviously different from Wuyi Shui Xian. The dry tea is square in shape, greenish-brown in colour with a golden hue, with a burst of floral fragrance; the tea soup is golden, the aroma has the elegance of orchids and the warm smell of osmanthus, and the long bubble does not diminish the after-smell. The taste is smooth and delicate, the sweetness after drinking is evident, and the fragrance lingers on the lips and teeth.
Generally speaking, Wuyi Shui Xian is more expensive than Zhangping Shui Xian.
Wuyi rock tea (including Shui Xian) has always been one of the most expensive oolong teas, partly due to its unique flavor and the more demanding skill required in its production, which requires more significant labor input.
In the Wuyi Mountains, where every inch of land is gold, and the terrain is complex, the leaves of Wuyi Shui Xian can only be picked by hand. These tea leaves then undergo a complex roasting process that can take several days. This step requires skill and attention to detail and is time-consuming and expensive.
On the other hand, this tea is also highly sought after by connoisseurs, further pushing up the price. As a result, Wuyi Shui Xian is usually considered a luxury tea and is often reserved for special occasions or as a gift.
Zhangping Shui Xian is much more readily available and is generally less expensive. Although it is a high-quality tea, it is more affordable for the average tea drinker.
It is important to note that the prices of Wuyi Shui Xian and Zhangping Shui Xian fluctuate depending on factors such as the quality and rarity of the tea. In addition, teas that win awards or are highly rated by experts may be more expensive.
As for the choice between Wuyi Shui Xian and Zhangping Shui Xian, it depends on your personal preference. If you like delicate, floral flavors, Zhangping Shui Xian may be the right choice. Wuyi Shui Xian may be more to your liking if you prefer a bolder roasted flavor.
If you enjoyed this article, you might also like to read the following articles: