High altitude natural tea gardens material from Jingmai Mountain
1 bud/2 leaves, heavy oxidation, sun-dried black tea
After days without being able to source fresh leaves, we were eager to produce more. Our cousin brought a bunch of fresh leaves from her natural tea gardens. While laying them on the withering mats, we noticed how tippy the material was, this could qualify as a 1 bud/2 leaves, even though the picking was not standard. It's delightful to see such tender leaves in the midst of the autumn season. Most of the leaves we get are coarse, this is to be expected in this season.
It was time to try something. How far can you push the oxidation? Let's test it.
After 30 hours of withering, we started the rolling process in the evening, we piled the tea in a cloth bag until the next morning... and decided we'd like to play with fire. We let the oxidation go on until noon. It was the latest we could go if we wanted to have a dry tea by the end of the day. The extra hours in the morning, warmer than during the night, allowed for more reddening. We then dried the tea and collected it from the mats at sunset.
The result is a highly aromatic tea with low sourness and a mellow mouthfeel. This experiment has producing an interesting and unexpected result that we're happy to share with you.