Gazing at Teas of the World - White Tea
Out of all the teas of the world white tea is the least processed it also has 3 times the antioxidants that black or green tea have. It has been enjoyed for over a thousand years by the Chinese but has only recently became available to the rest of the world. It was drank only by emperors and high ranking people at one time as it was a tribute tea to emperors.
Made from Select Buds and Leaves
The white tea is made from select leaves and the buds of the tea plant; which are steamed and dried. It gets its name from the white-silver hairs that adorn the buds. The highest quality white tea is called "Silver Needle" which only consists of buds. The buds are hand picked before they are fully open and are taken and air dried right away. This is one of the most expensive and rarest teas but it will be worth the expense when you consider the health benefits you will reap from drinking this wonderful brew.
The free radicals that can lead to sagging, wrinkles, and aging are cleared up by the polyphenols found in the tea. The Chinese have known for hundreds of years that tea is a great aide in combating aging. There are also other properties within the tea that help in battling certain cancers.
Not picked for Several Years
The white tea has to be nurtured; temperatures, soil, as well as altitude must be right as they play a big role in the quality of the tea. The white tea is not picked or ready to harvest for several years. It is then picked during a short time in early Spring; it is not picked in the rain or if frost is still on the ground.
Inspired Japanese Tea Ceremony
White tea became popular during the Song Dynasty (960-1279) it was a favorite tea of the royal court. The leaves and buds where ground up into a silver powder which was then whisked in a bowl during the Song tea ceremony. This was what inspired the Japanese tea ceremony.
Search for the Perfect Tea
It is said there was an emperor of the Song Dynasty that loved white tea so much and with such passion that he became obsessed with finding the perfect tea. The emperor (Hui Zung) became so wrapped up in the search for the perfect tea that it end up costing him most of his empire. White tea powder and the Song ceremony where abandoned over the next several centuries for loose tea.
Less Caffeine than Green or Black Tea
The brew of white tea has a very delicate sweet flavor that is said to sharpen ones senses but is not overpowering to the taste buds. If you are someone who is trying to cut back on your caffeine intake but still enjoy a good brew; well white tea has less caffeine than green or black tea. Give it a try you may like what your sipping on which is a cup full of benefits.
Signed: Sipping Tea