Country of Origin: China
Leaf Appearance: dark, wiry with some silvery buds
Steep time: 30 seconds
Water Temperature: 185 degrees
Preparation Method: porcelain gaiwan
Liquor: deep gold
I really enjoy yellow teas but they are definitely harder to come by. This is only the fourth one that I’ve written about here on the blog. The additional wrapping step they undergo during processing changes the taste in a unique way. I’ve been obsessed with yellow tea from Yunnan in particular ever since falling in love with Golden Dragon that was sold by Teavana. In fact, I am still holding on to a small hoard of it since they closed all of their stores. That is why I was really excited to see this tea in a batch of samples that Lost Tea Co. sent to me.
The dry leaf was fairly dark in color. They were long and spindly with a good amount of silvery looking buds. During processing yellow teas can oxidize quite a bit but they are a separate category from oolong or black tea. While I like that Lost Tea Co. provides both western and gongfu brewing directions, their recommended ratios are way too light. Brewing a tea for 2 seconds might give you a lot of infusions but you won’t be getting much flavor. When tasting the tea for this review, I used 6g of leaf in my gaiwan with 30-second infusions to start. Since then I have also brewed it western style at the office. It definitely needed at least 2 minutes to get to full strength.
Yunnan Yellow brewed up a beautiful deep gold color. Once unfurled I was able to see plenty of buds along with some slightly larger leaves. The color was a bit hard to describe, not quite green and not quite brown. Reddish edges show that some bruising occurred during processing. The taste was floral and sweet with a grounding earthiness. I was reminded of wildflower honey. This is what I love so much about this type of tea. They are aromatic yet balanced with a pleasant softness that makes you want to keep drinking. There was no bitterness and it only became astringent with extended infusion times. It maintained its strength through multiple infusions and the flavor remained consistent throughout.
Have you ever tried a yellow tea from Yunnan? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!