• Reviews

    Zhen Tea Lu’An Gua Pian

    Country of Origin: China Leaf Appearance: deep green, twisted Ingredients: green tea Steep time: 1 minute Water Temperature: 195 degrees Preparation Method: glass gong dao bei Liquor: greenish gold Gua Pian is an unusual kind of green tea because it is made solely using mature leaves. Buds are usually the more prized type of leaf but the tea producers in Anhui purposely make the tea this way. I’ve realized that green tea (with the possible exception of yellow tea) is probably the one category that I drink and write about the least. I hope you guys don’t get the idea that I don’t enjoy green tea because nothing could be farther than the truth.…


  • Reviews

    Zhen Tea Rou Gui – Ma Tou Yan

    Country of Origin: China Leaf Appearance: long, dark and twisted Ingredients: oolong tea Steep time: 30 seconds Water Temperature: 212 degrees Preparation Method: porcelain gaiwan Liquor: dark amber I was introduced to the kind folks at +ZhenTea when they exhibited at the New York Coffee & Tea Festival. When I ran into them again at World Tea Expo I was amazed that they had remembered my love of Rou Gui. They brought a sample for me all the way from Ottawa. How sweet is that? Fall is here and this tea was exactly what I needed. The roasting was on the subtle side, allowing the complexity of the tea to shine through. Dark chocolate was…

  • Reviews

    Zhen Tea Shui Jin Gui

    Country of Origin: China Leaf Appearance: dark, twisted Ingredients: oolong tea Steep time: 30 seconds Water Temperature: 212 degrees Preparation Method: porcelain gaiwan Liquor: amber I must confess to neglecting my Wuyi oolongs lately. I really do love them so but I don’t get as much opportunity to drink them. The kind folks at +ZhenTea gifted me a bit of this tea when I saw them at the New York Coffee and Tea Festival. Shui Jin Gui is often translated as Golden Water Turtle. There’s a few different legends on how this tea got it’s name so I’ll be writing a Legends of the Leaf post on it soon. The first thing that I noticed…

  • Reviews

    Zhen Tea Tie Guan Yin – Classic

    Country of Origin: China Leaf Appearance: small, somewhat dark and twisted Ingredients: oolong tea Steep time: 30 seconds Water Temperature: 212 degrees Preparation Method: porcelain gaiwan Liquor: brassy gold When I saw +ZhenTea at the New York Coffee and Tea Festival, this tea really caught my eye and they were kind enough to gift me a bit to take home. Prior to the 1990’s Tie Guan Yin was produced as a strip style oolong with heavier roasting. This tea was produced in that older style. The vividly green, tightly rolled oolong that we know today is a result of influences from Taiwanese processing and changes in market demand. The difference was quite remarkable. My tea…

  • Reviews

    Zhen Tea Bai Hao Yin Zhen (Silver Needle)

    Country of Origin: China Leaf Appearance: large jade green with silver hairs Ingredients: white teas Steep time: 3 minutes Water Temperature: 212 degrees Preparation Method: glass gaiwan Liquor: very pale I was really intrigued by the brewing directions for this selection on +ZhenTea‘s website. So many times I’ve seen it repeated that white tea needs lower temperature water or it will become bitter. The truth is that a good quality white tea can stand up to and even shine using boiling water. However, poor quality teas will show their faults unless treated delicately. Their recommended leaf to water ratio was 3g to 150ml. Most of my pots are quite a bit smaller so I…