Old White Tea – White Tea
Old White Tea is rare outside China – most people drink fresh white tea and many are not even aware that White tea can be aged like Pu Erh tea. Ageing makes the tea taste and texture become smoother and fuller. The infused tea color is light yellow at first, while later steepings become brown with a red tone.
Here is what James and Denny from Tea DB thinks of this tea
Sweetness of vanilla and burned sugar, honey, wildflower heather near lake in the woods, wet old wood, acorn and leather.
Round velvety soft mouthfeel, slight pleasing astringency. Vanilla, burned sugar, honey, wildflower heather with a hint of acorn.
Old White Tea has a relatively low caffeine content compared to other tea, however something in the ageing process makes it a powerful tea that may give a tea high feeling if consumed in large amounts. It also has a high amount of L-theanine which has a calming and relaxing effect on the brain.
Gong Fu Brewing:
Use approx. 4 g leaf pr. 100ml water. Rinse once or twice, steep times should be around 20 seconds and add around 10 seconds for each subsequent steeping. Temperature should be boiling (100 degrees celsius). This tea can be prepared in Glass teaware for a sweeter more delicate taste, or it can be brewed in a Yixing pot to get a thick, creamy delicious brew with a darker palate.
Lao Bai Cha can be brewed Gong Fu style like any other tea, however it is also very popular in China to boil this tea over a longer period of time – preferably after a few steepings in gaiwan. It brings out a lush sweetness that can not be found brewing it the normal way. Boiled with a bit of honey is believed to give the tea a medicinal quality to cool the human body and to soothe sore throat.
Most people will not have a tea boiler at handy, in which you set a temperature and keep it sizzling. It is ok to use a normal water boiler as well, just keep hitting the boil button a few times – a few minutes boil will be enough to start sipping this thick sweetness, add more water as you pour out into your cups and keep it boiling.