Tea Hunting Expedition: Exploring Ancient Tree Tea in Yunnan

July 19, 2017

Tea Hunting Expedition: Exploring Ancient Tree Tea in Yunnan

Tea Hunting Expedition: Exploring Ancient Tree Tea in Yunnan

I am always on the hunt for the ultimate tea. I go all over China to places where literally no foreigner has gone before in my quest.

Once, for eample, I was in Anji, Zhejiang Province which is famous for Anji White Tea. I have always seemed the farm version on the market, but never heard of a wild version. I stayed in a sort of farmer’s inn on the mountain by a waterfall. The farmer began brewing Anji White Tea.

I asked him what it was and to my surprise he said this is “ye sheng cha” which means wild tea. I nearly fell off my seat as I never heard of a wild Anji White tea. I asked him for directions to where I could find it and quickly set off, but first finished my cup. Only after 20 minutes I found my first wild Anji White Tea.

The Difficulty of Wild Tea

Wild Tea is one that is hard to source especially for quantity, but ancient tree, which is still difficult to source is more abundant. I have always been on the hunt for good Moonlight White as I love it and so do all my female customers as they love the soft whiteness contrasted by the jet black on the back of the leaves. I have tasted many Moonlight Whites but this one guy I met who has a family tea plantation of ancient tea trees here in Yunnan, had something quite special.

His Moonlight White was nothing like I had ever seen before.

The quality of the buds and leaves was mesmerizing by the amount of soft, whiteness that filled the bag. The taste and smell was incomparable to any other. Then he pulled out a black tea which knocked my socks off. I am a huge fan of Yunnan Black Tea otherwise known as Dian Hong, as I love the chocolatey, sometimes coconutty and honey flavors that can come out of it, but this black tea was in a class by it’s own.

This guy’s team farm is something else too!
Below is a picture of the young guy who runs the family farm and tea business, Zhang Tian. He is standing next to one of his ancient tea trees, which is actually small compared to some others he’s got.


Tea Farmer Tian Zhi with an Ancient Tea Tree
This guy grows not only this Artisan Golden Tips, but also Ancient Moonlight Whiteand Ancient Moonlight White Buds. All three teas are of stellar quality and will impress the most finicky of connoisseurs. Check out these fresh picked Moonlight White Buds below:

2012 Ancient Moonlight White Tea What I noticed was interesting about these Golden Tips is that they had the same jet black side of the leaf that makes an interesting contrast with the front side of the leaf.

Here is a description of the Golden Tips to wet your appetite: These expertly hand picked and traditionally processed tea leaves release a naturally soft, sweet chocolate, coconut like flavor that lingers on your palate. One whiff and you will be hooked.

The soft fuzzy golden leaves have a slight curl to them and inside is a jet black leaf creating a unique Golden Tip like no other. Coming from Jinggu in Yunnan, these Golden Tips are hands down the best black tea in Yunnan. Shana says it is her favorite black tea ever and oh she has tried a lot of them. It is the fresh 2012 Spring harvest so the best time to try black tea is when it is freshest.

2012 Ancient Artisan Yunnan Black

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