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Fuding Shou Mei White Tea Cake 2011
Aged, healthy, worth the collection
Aged, healthy, worth the collection
Fuding City, Fujian Province, China
Dec 26, 2013
Big leaves evenly compressed into a spherical cake shape,
a slight red color with distinctive white hairs
Floral scent tinged with a whiff of aged wood
A bright and clear orange-yellow tone
A full-bodied and pure tea, texture is thick and leaves a lasting sweet taste
in your mouth and throat, a hint of red dates undertones
Nanguang Tea Garden
Low caffeine (less than 10% of a cup of coffee)
Store in cool, dry place away from sunlight; keep ventilated
The aged the better
The Shoumei Cake Tea is well aged with a distinctive taste and enduring infusions.
Usually, White Tea leaves are loose and not convenient to carry around. For practicality, they are shaped into compressed spherical cakes. But easy storage and transportation are not the only reasons the cakes are compressed; their round shape allows the tea to mature. As the year pass, the tea gets smoother and sweeter with a soft finish and mellow taste.
An old saying about tea that stems from Fuding Town claims that: Tea is only the beginning, three years later it turns into medicine, and after seven years it becomes a treasure. Every sip of aged White Tea Cake should be savored and valued.
Teas shaped into cake make it easier to store and help with the natural oxidation. When compared to loose tea leaves, the shape of tea cake is definitely preferred. Teas shaped into round orbs only get better with time and since only a small surface of the leaves is exposed to air directly, the oxidation reaction is slow and even and promotes fermentation on the inside. The process and shape of the tea give it a more enticing aroma when it's dry, a more attractive colour when it's liquid, and a more savory taste.
Chinese Gongfu Method
|Teacup: 12oz / 355ml||Gaiwan: 3.8oz / 110ml|
|203℉ / 95℃||203℉ / 95℃|
|5g Tea||8g Tea|
|Brewing time: 3 - 5 mins||7 steeps: rinse, 10s, 20s, 30s, 40s, 60s, 90s, 120s|
|Rinse time is around 5 seconds|
The Nanguang Tea Garden is located in the west of Taimu Mountain with elevation between 600-900 metres, and is 80% covered by forest.
The weather here is warm and humid, with abundant rainfall. The tea plantation is surrounded by fog which creates the perfect conditions for tea bushes, resulting in a rich array of micro-minerals and organic nutrients accumulating in the tea leaves. The tea plants growing here are mainly of the Fuding Dabaihao varieties.
Nanguang Tea Garden in Panxi, Fujian
Lin Jian, who was born in Fuding in Fujian Province, grew up surrounded by tea. His father, grandfather, and great-grandfather were all tea farmers. When he was in elementary school, he helped pick tea after school during the tea-picking season when there were not enough people to help with the harvesting. That’s when his dream of entering the tea business was born.
Mr Lin says: “My original idea was simply to make a good life for my family through my tea-growing business. But in 1993, when my tea business had gradually developed, I changed my mind. I want to create a long-term Organic Tea business.” Talking to Mr Lin, our impression was of a man with a very frank manner who speaks quickly, walks quickly and works quickly.
It would not be an exaggeration to say that Lin Jian is the founding father of Chinese white tea in the modern day. He owns nearly 2800 acres of high-grade tea gardens in Fuding, including 500 acre organic tea garden - the first organic tea garden in Fujian that has earned organic certification in the USA, Europe and Japan. He also owns a 200 acre jasmine tea garden in Guangxi Province.
In 2008, his Silver Needle White Tea won the gold medal at the annual Chinese White Tea festival in Beijing.
This Shoumei Cake Tea is produced in Panxi, Fuding which is a famous tea-producing area located in the northeast of Fujian Province. Fuding belongs to the subtropical monsoon climate, characteristic of coastal areas. The average annual sunshine lasts 1840 hours; the average annual temperature is 18.5°C and the average annual precipitation is 1661.6 mm.
This ShouMei White Tea Cake is made from the leaves of the Fuding Dabaihao tea plant, also called “Dahao” for short. It propagates asexually and is shaped like a small tree.
In 1985 it was certified as a national tea plant variety with the number GS13002-1985. It can grow up to 2.8 m high and has an obvious trunk. Spring tea, which contains 1.8% amino acid and 28.2% tea polyphenols, is a high-quality tea used to make White Tea.
In Fujian, tea has been grown for centuries. It was also important for commercial purposes and the trade centre in ancient China. The process of drying the tea was meticulously followed by old tea farmers who used a variation of hot air drying and sun drying to remove excess water from the tea leaves. These methods eased the preservation process and helped sell the tea. The leaves of this naturally dried tea seemed to appear like the Shouxing’s (the longest-living old man in mythology) long curved eyebrow (眉毛，méimáo).
As a result, people named this tea Shoumei White Tea.