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Steelergar
12-12-2009, 08:58 AM
What do you guys know about Chinese Tea because I don't know squat?

Ranger_B
12-12-2009, 04:58 PM
Sorry alls I know is its from China. Not much help.

Snake Hips
12-12-2009, 09:41 PM
Some of it's black, some of it's green, some of it's white, all of it is delicious. That's all you need to know.

Nimbus
12-20-2009, 12:58 AM
The black teas are very bitter and strong. My father likes the loose teas because he has no taste buds :pn (smoking cigarettes for 42+ years). The dim sum restaurants serve a milder version of this type of tea.

Then you have Chrysanthemum tea, which is light and a little sweet. There is very little after taste and it is usually paired with dim sum dishes. If you are drinking this tea during dim sum, you may request to have sugar added to the tea before it is served. Also, stir the pot to loosen the petals and evenly distribute the sugar.

The purpose of drinking tea during dim sum or any other meal, is the break down of oils from the food for digestion.

Do not drink dietary tea unless you want to lose water weight. You will also be in the bathroom for a very long time, many times over.

Some foreign teas have an exuberant amount of caffeine, so be aware. :2

Neuromancer
12-20-2009, 02:39 AM
The black teas are very bitter and strong....

When brewed properly, no tea should taste bitter...

Three main types of teas; black, green, and white...here are some examples:

Blacks:
Keemun - also known as China Black
English Breakfast Tea
Irish Breakfast Tea
Prince of Wales

Earl Grey - also a black tea with flavoring from bergamot (bitter orange) ** this is my favorite...it gives it a light hint of citrus :dr

Greens:
Japanese Green Gunpowder
Green Tea - any of several types

Whites:
Any of several types

If you plan on buying in the grocery store I find Twinnings to be the best brand...everything else tastes flat and stale by comparison...and you can buy most of these in teabags or loose leaf in tins

BTW - Teas age like cigars if you buy tins of loose leaf and keep them sealed to let them age

Here's a good online vendor I've bought from several times...

Simpson & Vail (http://www.svtea.com/)

Also, if you're serious you might want to google "brewing tea" online for a primer on how to brew them properly...each of the three types (black, green, white) use different temperatures and brewing times...

Enjoy :tu

Zanaspus
12-20-2009, 07:07 AM
What do you guys know about Chinese Tea because I don't know squat?
What do you want to know exactly? 99.8% of the tea I drink anymore is from China.

A (hopefully) short primer:

Blacks. These are good, but IMO, this is not where China shines. Remember, they invented tea drinking a couple millenia ago, and they never got around to this very much until the English demanded it. They will not taste like what you're used to. Major types:

Keemun or Qimen; Very small whole leaf with a nice punchy flavor.
Yunnan gold; Very peppery. An acquired taste that once acquired can become addiction.
Lapsang Souchong; Pine smoked tea. Some love it. Not for me.

Greens. This is where it all started. Chinese greens run the gamut of all tastes and processing methods (apart from steamed, where the Japanese shine). Too many varieties to go through (or know for that matter), but some you're likely to encounter with some digging;

Dragonwell or Long Jing; a flatleaf pan fired green that is ubiquitous in ints incarnations. From cheap knockoffs to really expensive shining examples. Very "nutty" and addictive.
Green Snail Spring or Bi Lo Chun; Curled tender leaves that are very difficult to brew well. When done so, a lovely flowery cup.
Eyebrow or Mao Feng; More curly light tasting and nice.
Literally hundreds more.

Oolong. Where the Chinese are kings (ignore what folks say about Taiwan :ss). Again, lots of varieties, but three major groups. Anxi are lightly oxidised "ball" type oolongs. Dancong are lightly oxidised with some roast straight leaves. And Wuyi (the king in my book) Varying stages of oxidation but generally highly roasted.

Iron goddess of mercy or Ti Kuan Yin is the most famous Anxi.
Feng Huang Dancong for Dancongs
Big Red Robe or Da Hong Pao is the most famous (and a favorite of mine) Wuyi.

Finally is Pu-Erh. Tea that is generally compressed into a cake. It comes in two types; Traditional or Sheng(unfermented) is green tea pressed into a cake. If you hear about people going nuts for 70 year old tea, this is probably it. A recent addition is cooked or Shu. This is pre-fermented in an effort to make it taste like the old stuff. Epic fail IMHO, but some like the taste of dirt and really enjoy the stuff.

FWIW, I drink about 90% Sheng Pu-erh and 10% Wuyi oolong.

Questions? Ask. I can attempt to answer or at least point to resources.

Steelergar
12-20-2009, 01:29 PM
Thanks for the info, the Oolong, White, and Pu- Erh are the newest for me and the ones I know the least about.

Zanaspus
12-20-2009, 04:08 PM
Ahh, completely forgot about white and yellow. ;s

Yellow is not all that common and generally needs to be ordered directly from China for any example. It strikes me as a pricey green. But, it's deliciously tasty nonetheless.

There are a few whites, but the one most commonly encountered is Silver Needle. This is another one of those ubiquitous teas that ranges from the insipid to the wonderful depending on source and price.

OHMatt
12-20-2009, 08:00 PM
I am partial to high mountain Oolong and Pouchong from Taiwan. I like my oolong with a lighter roast. If you find yourself enjoying longer roasts by all means save money and buy the tea from China. Chinese Anxi Oolong doesn't do it for me.

Tea from China is less expensive however. I find Da Hong Pao, Pai Mu Tan, and Long Jing from China very good.

Also not to be ignored is Lipton Green Label Darjeeling. Yes, I said Lipton. The Green Label is worlds better than what you will find in the yellow box at a typical grocery. Look at an Indian grocery store to find it. It is a green tea with a wonderful "muscatel" flavor and a full pound box can be had for under $20.

I use Adagio's "IngenuiTEA" and brew up 3-4 pots most work days.

Nimbus
12-20-2009, 10:09 PM
Also not to be ignored is Lipton Green Label Darjeeling. Yes, I said Lipton.

Lipton also have a yellow label that is better than their regular production. I found it at the Asian supermarket and no where else. :confused:

Neuromancer
12-20-2009, 10:45 PM
Another online vendor I've used...

Adiago Teas (http://www.adagio.com/)

Steelergar
12-23-2009, 07:16 PM
I went into a local wine and cheese store run by a persian girl that sells tea also that a frequent once and awhile and got the deal of the year. I asked her if she had any persian black tea. She told me I'm the only person who goes in there for tea and she gave me around $60 worth of tea for $15. It included some chinese tea called Li Zi Hung black and Jasmine green tea. Anybody ever hear of the former?

Zanaspus
12-24-2009, 07:51 AM
If it's what I think it is, Li Zi Huang is Lychee scented black. Very nice change of pace if you, like me, enjoy lychee.

Steelergar
12-24-2009, 09:11 AM
yeah its very flavorful compared to English black Tea.

netsurfr
11-20-2010, 08:23 PM
If you are interested in a bit of a tutorial on various Chinese teas, you can find quite a bit of information on my site. The tea education information is located in the drop-down menus at the top of the home page.

While I specialize in pu-erh teas, I carry a rather nice selection of white, green, oolong, and black teas. I don't have any yellow tea yet but have identified a source in China and will probably have some on the site soon. Pu-erh teas are my favorites but next to that the Taiwanese Oolongs teas are the teas that I tend to go to for variety.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Best regards,
Steve
www.JAS-eTea.com
sales@JAS-eTea.com

DivineRight
02-02-2011, 03:17 PM
Chinese teas are typically not served with cream or sugar, just black. I always get a stupid smirk on when people ask for it after I brew up a pot.

SeanGAR
02-02-2011, 05:31 PM
Oolong. Where the Chinese are kings (ignore what folks say about Taiwan :ss). Again, lots of varieties, but three major groups. Anxi are lightly oxidised "ball" type oolongs. Dancong are lightly oxidised with some roast straight leaves. And Wuyi (the king in my book) Varying stages of oxidation but generally highly roasted.

Iron goddess of mercy or Ti Kuan Yin is the most famous Anxi.
Feng Huang Dancong for Dancongs
Big Red Robe or Da Hong Pao is the most famous (and a favorite of mine) Wuyi.


I've had some good semi fermented teas from mainland, but I'd be lying if I didn't say that I don't find them better than tea from Taiwan. I like lightly roasted and fermented tea, so I gravitate to baozhong (pouchong) teas from northern taiwan. High mountain Alishan can be quite nice as well.

As you probably know, Tu Guan Yin is a different tea bush than most other teas, and I've found some chinese tea labeled TGY seems to be from the more common chinshing bush, based on taste. I've also had lightly roasted TGY from china which shocked me the first time I tried it. They call it jade TGY and it is quite different from what the taiwanese make in mucha. I've spoken with several tea shop owners in Taipei who say some people call tea TGY that is not made from that bush. Not a big fan of jinshing (xin juan), but I've had nice tea from cinnamon bush tea.

In any case, good tea is good tea and I've had good tea from mainland and Taiwan. I haven't found anything from mainland (and I've tried most of the ones you mention) that quite rings my bell, although I did have a monkey picked jade TGY from jing tea ship 2 years ago that was really nice and a TGY one of my Chinese students brought over for me was likewise quite nice, but the roasting is much less than I expect for a Taiwanese TGY.