Great value, delicious, soothing yellow tea from Zhejiang Province.
Generally, there are only three types of yellow tea available in the United States – Mo Gan Huang Ya, Meng Ding Huang Ya, and Jun Shan Yin Zhen. Now, thanks to the arrival of this batch, there is one more. We are very proud to be the first and only U.S.-based tea company to offer this rare yellow tea. Pingyang Huangtang originated in the coastal areas around Wenzhou in Zhejiang Province roughly 200 years ago, during the Qing Dynasty. At the time, Wenzhou was famous for its abundance of excellent green tea. Demand for Wenzhou tea was widespread and crept further and further north, all the way to Beijing and Tianjin. As was the case with the historical emergence of puerh, the extra travel time caused the leaves to lightly oxidize, dampen, and mellow; the leaves’ aromas, flavors, and colors quieted considerably, and a wonderful and unique new type of tea was accidentally created. Tea drinkers in the north loved this less vegetal, less green, more “yellow” tea, and soon they began asking for it by name, calling it Wenzhou Huangtang (“yellow broth from Wenzhou”). Farmers, in turn, quickly developed an ingenious way of creating this product intentionally: just after picking, they would slightly oxidize and dampen the tea by heating it under cloth. Wenzhou Huangtang quickly became an imperial tribute tea, meaning it could only be sold to the imperial palace (then ruled by Emperor Qianlong). Today, production has shifted to Pingyang, a small town south of Wenzhou, and our tea maker (a retired professor and poet) has won several awards for his Pingyang Huangtang. This tea comes in many grades, and we intentionally sourced this particular, middle grade one because it comes in at an accessible price point and is a great introduction to this rare, amazing, uniquely Chinese genre of tea. This tea is an extraordinary value, and we are thrilled to get to introduce US tea drinkers to it. It is beautiful, soothing, delicious, and healthful, with a mellow overall feel and a light umami base (owing to the steaming and coastal growth). According to Chinese medicine, yellow tea protects the spleen and stomach, aiding in the production of essential digestive enzymes, and penetrating into fat cells to help restore metabolic function. It is also rich in polyphenols and is believed to have stronger cancer prevention qualities than any other tea.
Method 1 (Grandpa style): 4g or 2 tbsp. tea, 10 oz. tall glass, 185° water, enjoy directly from cup in which tea is steeping, add more hot water as you wish (and definitely once you are down to about a quarter of the liquid).
Method 2 (Gong fu style): 4g or 2 tbsp. tea, 6-8 oz. teapot or gaiwan, 185° water, 1 min. 15 sec. Steep 4-5 times, adding 10-20 seconds each time.
See our Temperature Guide for help.