Taiping Houkui ｜太平猴魁
Tasting notes: Bamboo, vegetal, seaweed
Origin: Houkeng, Anhui, China
Cultivar: 柿大葉 Shi Da Ye (Big Leaf)
Literally translated as “peaceful monkey leader”, Taiping Houkui has the biggest leaves of any green tea—up to 6cm long! It is grown in the foothills of Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) in Anhui, China, and won the "King of Tea" award at the China Tea Exhibition in 2004. It yields a smooth, velvety tea with a grassy brightness and deep notes of bamboo and seaweed.
This specialty green tea is unique in two main ways. Firstly, while most green teas have tiny delicate leaves, Taiping Houkui is made from the 柿大葉 Shi Da Ye cultivar with leaves that are astonishingly big in the tea world.
Secondly, Taiping Houkui is baked as well as pan-fired and dried flat using a series of bamboo baskets at various temperatures. Instead of being rolled, the leaves are pressed between meshes with a roller to make them flat. This helps the flavour release faster when brewed.
With deep-green leaves and the occasional white bud, this show-stopping tea has a rounder, less astringent flavour than typical green teas, which makes it a great option for those new to green tea.
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