- Tea Knowledge
Surprisingly tart, the dried leaves of this Qi Lan greet the nose with a fairly mild scent…a touch of grilled peaches. It seems its careful oxidation and threefold roasting has been perfectly calibrated—present but not dominant—allowing the liquor to express a beautiful balance of fruit and florality in viscous texture. Several infusions follow, and peach gives way to apple, and an anethole sweetness on the edge of the tongue. Grown at the heart of Wuyishan in the "zheng yan" area of Liang Hua Feng (Lotus Peak), it has had its prized terroir enhanced by masterful processing for a yan cha of sheer delight.
Wuyi Yan Cha – the tea from the rocks
Wuyi Yan Cha, aka Wuyi Rock Tea or, more properly, Cliff Tea, is an ancient oolong tea (one of the six tea categories, halfway between green and black teas). Produced in northern Fujian province, yan cha are complex teas, with their typical mineral savour sharing the field with the strength from roasting and delicate floral and fruity hints.
For best results in gongfu cha, brew in the traditional gaiwan or in a Yixing teapot. Too high water temperature would burn the leaves, resulting in bitter taste.
Authentic Wuyi Yan Cha is produced in the Mount Wuyi region, a UNESCO natural heritage site. The dramatic gorges of the Nine Bend River are surrounded by a largely intact subtropical forest and smooth cliffs of black-brownish rocks. The tea plants grow in narrow valleys next to the cliffs in a mineral-rich soil.