Huang Zhi Xiang is also known as “Yellow Twig”, “Yellow Branch” or “Yellow Gardenia Aroma”.
A great tea with a long name! It’s a beautiful Dan Cong Oolong from the Phoenix Mountains of Northern Guangdong Province in China. The Phoenix Mountain range extends between a height of 300 and up to 1500m. According to local history of the area, the near-by Phoenix Mountains were first cultivated for tea production over 600 years ago. The climate here is tropical, bordering on subtropical, and the yellowish-red soil is rich and fertile. The ideal terroir for growing tea!
This tea is directly from the Li Zai Ping village, the highest altitude village in Mt Wudong. Tea cultivation in this area is a tradition that dates back hundreds of years. Well-known since the Song dynasty when the Chinese went to tea rooms to relax and talk to friends. Huang Zhi Xiang was also a tribute tea during the Song Dynasty. This variety is known for its orange blossom aroma and taste.
Name gives us clues as to what this tea has in store for us as drinkers, as does the aroma of its leaves. It possesses a delicate, high mountain taste combined with graceful and elegant notes of gardenia flowers and orange blossoms that rise from its dry leaves and these notes only increase in intensity after steeping. This is a rare tea that is only available in limited quantities and seldom seen outside of China
Huang Zhi trees are old, single strain trees with very characteristic straight trunks and umbrella- like branches. The average age of the trees is about 50 years. The trees are spread throughout Guangdong province and are grown just like wild plants along the mountain slopes. Since the single trunk rises straight up and the branches form an umbrella, it makes harvesting the leaves particularly difficult. Pickers must use tall ladders or must climb the trees in order to harvest the long leaves. Due to the limited amount of 30- to 50-year-old trees, the production of the tea is limited.
Next… Huang Zhi Xiang in my cup