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Spring 2020 Yingpan Shan Yunnan Black

  • Tea plantations of Yingpan Mountain, near Pu'er City
  • March 1st 2020,
  • Yunnan black tea, dried with hot air
  • Loose leaf black tea

On the outskirts of Pu'er City grow many tea plantations. They were established about 30 years ago and are made of a diversity of varietals. You can find Oolong cultivars, black tea clones. This tea, however, does not come from a clonal varietal, the plantations were established with seeds, we call it the 'old varietal'. These plantations grow at an altitude of 1300-1600m.

The area is known for its affordable black tea. The tea trees are heavily pruned in order to get a higher yield. The trees sprout from mid-February to the end of November. In the past, they were conducted with pesticides and fertilizers in order to get a high volume and satisfy the demand for cheap Yunnan tea. In 2016, the local government decided to restrict the use of agrochemicals on the old varietal, in order to increase the quality of the tea and lower the impact of the plantations on the environment. These tea trees are in the process of being converted to organic agriculture, which requires five years without pesticide use. While the producers haven't received the organic certification yet, these teas offer a great price for value. The yield has decreased but the price remains almost the same as before.

This is a classic 1 bud/2 leaves yunnan black. Withered for 18 hours, rolled for over an hour, oxidized for 5 hours and dried with hot air. This is a fairly low oxidation which allows a punchy mouthfeel with a very floral aroma. The tea was dried in one step, which very lightly roasts the surface of the leaves and gives a nice extra touch to the natural fragrance of the leaves.

A very good daily drinker that performs well in a mug, large teapot or gongfu style. Refreshing and straightforward.