What is Silver Needle Tea?
Silver Needle, or Bai Hao Yin Zhen in Chinese, is one of the Chinese Ten Famous Teas. It is the queen of white tea as it holds the highest standard for tea leaves. Only a very limited amount of Silver Needle is produced every year, not to mention Silver Needle Premium. It is a slightly fermented white tea produced exclusively in Fuding county, Fujian province, the tea province in China. You can recognize Silver Needle Premium tea by its needle-shaped body covered with white hairs.
When was Silver Needle Premium discovered?
Silver Needle Premium was first produced by the Fuding people in the Qing Dynasty (1796 A.D.). And it began to sell overseas in 1891. However, the rare and precious Silver Needle Premium was exclusive to the noble class due to its high price. Back then, this tea was presented as tribute from the Fujian province to the emperor every year since the emperor loved its taste. Today, Silver Needle Premium is still the most loved white tea in the market.
Where does the tea come from?
Silver Needle is produced in a few different regions in Fujian. The very type produced in Fuding, among all, is of top quality and its appearance is as white as silver. It grows high up in the mountains of China’s Fujian province and this organic tea only consists of the most delicate buds from the newly grown tea plants.
Fujian province is one of the best tea production regions of China. Mostly mountainous, this province is traditionally described as “Eight parts mountain, one part water, and one part farmland.” Its subtropical climate and mild winters create perfect tea growing conditions and it is famous for its production of white tea, particularly Silver Needle. Fuding County, home to the popular white tea bush varietals ‘Fuding Da Hao’ and ‘Fuding Da Bai’, which are noted for their delicious taste and delicate floral sweetness.
How is Silver Needle Premium Made?
The processing of Silver Needle Premium is rather simple. The most significant part lies in the plucking of the tea. Only one single bud on top in perfect condition is selected. If it is rainy or if the dew has not disappeared, there is no harvesting. The first 2 rounds of plucking in spring produces the best batch of Silver Needle Premium. After collecting the supreme tea leaves, tea farmers leave them to wither in mild sunlight and then roast them on low heat for a very short time. This way, the natural flavor of tea leaves is best preserved.
What does Silver Needle tea look and taste like?
As the name goes, Silver Needle Premium has a needle-shaped, straight tea body covered in tiny white hairs. Beautiful as it is before brewing, the tea leaves stand up straight upon brewing. It looks like the tea leaves are dancing in the hot water the way they go up and down.
Silver Needle Premium has a fruity, honey-sweet fragrance and pleasant, mild mellow taste. It is rich in minerals and antioxidants.
Why is it good for you?
High Antioxidant Content – White tea is rich in minerals and antioxidants. Actually, the content of them is twice of that of other tea. Antioxidants like vitamin C and K are important for the health of your skin, blood vessels, tendons and ligaments. Its high antioxidant content is beneficial for protecting your body from oxidative stress that may lead to some common chronic diseases.
Antipyretic Quality – The white tea family has a special quality of coolness and mildness. It can reduce fever or heat in your body. In Traditional Chinese Medical Science, white tea is usually used to soothe dampness and fever. It is also known to being able to treat measles.