Someone told me once that white tea just tasted like a cup of hot water to them. I probably would have agreed early on in my tea journey. When your tastebuds are accustomed to strong root beer and sweet, fizzy, highly flavored soda it takes a while to train your palate to find subtle flavors, at least it did for me. Perhaps the real foodies “get it” right from the start.
I haven’t had unflavored white tea in a while and decided that today would be a good day to take a cup of Bai MuDan outside and enjoy its simplicity while sitting in the sunshine, a rare treat in late winter. Though very windy, it is warm and the sun is welcome after many days of rain.
The packet called for two grams of leaf for twelve ounces of water, which I thought seemed to far too little at first. I used my new Upton Digital Tea Scale since large leaf white tea can be tricky to judge. Teavivre recommends five to eight minutes, and I steeped for about five because I was ready for my break!
First, this is a beautiful golden cup of tea. The color is rich and deep and it actually LOOKS full bodied in the cup. The flavor did not let me down. No one could mistake this for a “cup of hot water!” The flavor lingers for quite a while, too.
I see a lot of white tea described accurately as tasting like sunshine on hay, mainly Shou Mei, but this Bai MuDan tastes like golden stalks with a hint of spring in the air, with the scent of distant flowers laid over, and maybe even a little soft, sweet vegetable like snow pea or sugar snap peas.
I think this is going to be my go-to quiet time cup for a while.
Want to Know More About This Tea?
Leaf Type: White
Where to Buy: Teavivre
Teavivre’s White Peony Bai MuDan tea is farmed and produced on Mt. Taimu, using material from Dabaihao tea trees. While this is a slightly oxidized white tea, it is produced with the same minimal processing as Silver Needle white tea, with the main difference between the two being that silver needle uses only buds, while bai mudan includes opened leaves as well.