Baihao Yinzhen (Silver Needle)

Organic White Tea 2021

The delicate fragrance of Silver Needle’s nutritious tea buds is like fresh flowers. The smooth, juicy flavor fills the mouth with clean, lingering sweetness. Consists entirely of single tea buds with highly concentrated nutrients, harvested by hand from the original white tea bush cultivars from Fujian Province.

Since 2021’s Silver Needle has just been made, its fresh hay and green fruit notes are at the forefront. Cucumber, melon rind, alfalfa and even green apple are all there for just a little while before they eventually settle into the cool herbal, delicate floral, fresh cut wood, and young grain sensations typically associated with this white tea once it’s had some time to rest.

Clear selection

Tea Origin
Shaowu City, Fujian Province, China

Tea Bush
Dabai (Big White), Dahao (Big Hair), Quntizhong (Heirloom Tea Bush)

Tea Master
Chen Qingwen

Harvest Time
Late March

Picking Standard
One bud

The delicate fragrance of Silver Needle’s nutritious tea buds is like fresh flowers. The smooth, juicy flavor fills the mouth with clean, lingering sweetness. Consists entirely of single tea buds with highly concentrated nutrients, harvested by hand from the original white tea bush cultivars from Fujian Province.

High quality Silver Needle should be made up of large, healthy tea buds with most of their white fuzz intact. When infused, the buds will turn to a light green color right away. The color of the infusion is like a light honey. When compared to infused green tea, it will appear slightly yellow.

For first time tea drinkers and seasoned aficionados alike, Silver Needle is a very approachable tea. It is easier on the stomach than a green tea and even a long infusion in high temperature water will not bitter the flavor. You will find it very easy to drink and very easy to brew.

The Silver Needle white tea garden

Lots of different small green plants growing down around the base of the white tea plants.
Diverse greenery in the undergrowth around the tea bushes in an organic white tea garden, including sensitive plants like ferns.

This particular Baihao Yinzhen is made from a blend of the two main Fujian white tea cultivars, Dabai (Big White) and Dahao (Big Hair), as well as some of Fujian’s local quntizhong heirloom tea bushes. This produces a deep and complex yet balanced flavor.

Our Silver Needle is produced by a certified organic tea garden that is cared for without any pesticides or herbicides and weeded by hand. This has allowed other natural vegetation to flourish in the undergrowth around the tea plants, including sensitive plants like ferns.

The simple process of making Baihao Yinzhen

Silver Needle white tea drying naturally on large raised trays outdoors in the sun.
Baihao Yinzhen (Silver Needle) white tea drying naturally in the sun.

The sweetest of the white teas, Silver Needle is made up of only buds hand-plucked from the tea bush. Meticulously separated from the stem, the freshly harvested white tea buds are fanned on to a single layer and air-dried naturally until 85%-90% of their moisture is removed. The drying process is then completed with a gentle baking to stabilize the tea. The very low temperature drying of this tea is designed to preserve the white color of its buds. Too high of a temperature will make the buds yellow.

What makes white tea different from green tea?

 

Two side by side images of a basket of freshly plucked Silver Needle tea buds and a close-up view of the buds themselves.
The fuzzy single tea buds of freshly harvested Silver Needle white tea.

Unlike green tea, white tea leaves are never fired or steamed to kill the enzymatic action that causes oxidation. Instead, oxidation of the leaves is prevented by their lack of moisture. The withering process is very long and gradual, thus slight oxidation of the leaves (or buds) will naturally occur. With this slight amount of oxidation, white tea’s color is typically not as bright or green as you would expect from a green tea.

No chemical fertilizer, pesticide, or herbicide was used in the production of this tea. Click here to read more about our promise to fair trade and the environment.

Baihao Yinzhen (Silver Needle) brewing guidelines

5 grams (2 Tb) tea

12 oz 88°C (190ºF) water

5 min. first infusion

At least 4 infusions: 5, 5, 6, 10 minutes