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“Fresh Tea” – The Artistry of Chinese Tea

"Fresh tea" takes on a new meaning in China.  In the West, where fresh is understood as recently harvested or new; on China-side, fresh tea is a type or class of tea produced in the spring and made to local customs.  Typically not highly processed, these teas are made without a prevailing standard, are handmade and offer a rich palette of flavor defined by local custom and taste.

While the varietal may be known, such as a Mao Feng or Mei Zhan in Fujian Province, tea farms and local farmers harvest these teas and process them according to their taste or the prevailing local flavor.  The resulting "fresh" tea has aroma and flavor qualities usually not found beyond the local area and they are produced in comparatively small quantities.   

These teas often vary in appearance and taste year-to-year.   The flavors vary as there is no blending and no standard beyond the color of the leaf and the discretion of the tea maker. The result is "fresh" teas, not well known but certainly some of China's most interesting and prized teas.

Difficult to find, rich in palette flavors, these rare varietals offer an opportunity to enjoy some of China's finest teas.

Silk Road Teas "Fresh Tea" offerings:

  • Big White

    Big White

    Big White is an exceptional, handmade "fresh" white tea grown in Fujian Province. This is a tea not typically sold outside of its area as it is made in very small lots and consumed locally. This white has a very evident, pleasing flavor as, in this case,...
    Herbaceous, notes of stone fruit.

  • Black Cloud

    Black Cloud

    This Meizhan varietal is an early-spring harvest black tea known in China as "fresh tea" denoting it is made to a local custom. Not made to a standard and certainly varied in its taste season-to-season, this tea well exemplifies China's small farm tea...
    Flavors of cocoa powder, fruit & chocolate w/ lingering sweetness.

  • Black Fragrance - Hei Xiang

    Black Fragrance - Hei Xiang

    Black Fragrance is in the class of early spring teas known as "fresh tea". These teas are early spring harvest lots made to local customs of processing to bring out the favored aromas and flavors of the surrounding population. Typically, they are made in...
    "Fresh tea", notes of molasses & fruit, with a lingering finish.
  • Empress Green - Lu Huanghou

    Empress Green - Lu Huanghou

    There is a class of teas harvested early in the spring & processed to local customs of appearance, flavor, and aroma. Typically made in small lots and rarely exported, these teas are often exceptional and offer a window into the great...
    "Fresh tea", strong, nuanced and refreshing

  • Flower Fragrance

    Flower Fragrance

    Early harvest teas, even when processed to black style, often have fragrances reminiscent of spring flowers. In this tea, the teamaker found hints of flowers thus the name. The aroma of the wet leaves is light evergreen, almost mint. Taste reminds us of...
    Ambrosial, fragrance of spring flowers
  • Fried Fragrance No. 1

    Fried Fragrance No. 1

    In the tradition of crafting early-spring, high-grade leaves in small lots for the local market, Fried Fragrance is a good result. The farm's cultivar, Mei Zhan, was harvested in early April, withered, shaped then pan-fired at a comparatively high...
    Strong leaf flavors, clean, hint of vanilla & spring flowers.
  • Full Moon Harvest Cake

    Full Moon Harvest Cake

    Herbaceous, fruity and naturally sweet all come to mind in tasting this Fall harvest white tea cake made using a high-grade Fuding area Dai Bai Da Hao varietal.    Lot Notes Appearance wise, it is a stunning cake. Large White Peony...
    Celebrates the Full Moon Festival, herbaceous, fruity and naturally sweet, 357 grams.

  • Green Fragrance - Lu Se Xiang Wei

    Green Fragrance - Lu Se Xiang Wei

    FuAn area farms are widely recognized for the quality of their cultivars, particularly the famous Da Bai. A mountainous area along the coast of the China Sea, FuAn offers a terroir ideal for developing nuanced, rich tasting teas. In the last few years,...
    Bright, fresh, enlivening
  • Green Monkey

    Green Monkey

    Green Monkey is made using the varietal, Mei Zhan, a slow growing, locally treasured tea bush offering deep, rich flavors.  Mei Zhan prefers the higher elevations of Fujian Province where temperatures rise and fall...
    "Fresh tea", vegetal to citrusy notes.

  • Small Green Leaf

    Small Green Leaf

    Spring teas in China embody tradition, terrier, and skill. In FuAn traditions in farming and processing of tea run deep. Their cultivars are famous, their flavors in great demand. Each year, we seek out these teas made to these local farming practices...
    fresh asparagus, a bit of nuttiness