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Wu Long (Oolong) Tea

Bei Dou 北斗

Just like a toasty biscuit in liquid form

Regular price $23.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $23.00 USD

Spring 2021: Toasty biscuit in liquid form 

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About This Tea

Bei Dou means "big dipper" and as its name suggests, you’ll never mistake this cultivar for another. It is unapologetically bold and blunt, both in its fragrance and its texture. Bei Dou is a tea that does not hold back in delivering what it has to offer.

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  • Origin

    Guan Yin Yan, Wu Yi Shan, Fu Jian Province, China (~300-500m elevation)

  • History and Significance

    Bei Dou is one of the indigenous and most famous cultivars of Wu Yi Shan. Wu Yi Shan is a World UNESCO Site, and the location of the best terroir for wu long anywhere in the world.

  • Category

    Category: Wu Long (Oolong) Tea

    Sub-Category: Min Bei Wu Long (Yan Cha, Cliff Tea)

    Cultivar: Bei Dou

  • Processing

    Yan Cha tea is made with only the leaves, making it one of the latest teas to be harvested each year, with Ban Yan picking time around early to mid-April and Zheng Yan early May. After the teas are sufficiently wilted, they remain on bamboo trays for a few hours before being shaken or tumbled to manage enzyme activity. This step regulates how the water inside the leaves travels outward. The process is repeated every hour, 5-8 times throughout the evening and night until morning. Once the teas are acceptably fermented in the early morning, they are then wok-fried to kill the enzymes in the leaves to stop the fermentation. Fresh out of the wok when the leaves are still hot and soft, they are rolled vigorously to break the surface membranes to bring out more consistent flavors in the tea. The most tedious step in all Chinese tea making is the stem-picking step, which in Yan Cha’s case takes place for several months following the rough tea making. It is a step where undesired yellow leaves (old leaves) and stems are picked out by hand. The “cleaned” tea is then roasted on very dim charcoal ash for 8–12 hours, 1-3 times depending on the varietal, to make it a finished Yan Cha.

  • Tasting Notes

    Bei Dou has a four-pointed balance of greenness, floweriness, nutty and savory; it’s like a toasty biscuit in liquified form.

  • Brewing Instructions

    Please see above for the category specific brewing specs for Gong Fu brewing. For brewing in a teapot, mug, or single cup visit this article here.

  • Learn How To Gong Fu Brew

    This foundational course is a great resource to help you understand the methods and motions of Gong Fu Brewing.