Iron Arhat

Iron Arhat

Iron Arhat from white2tea.

I was looking to try some different sorts of tea and I liked white2tea’s philosophy:

“we conduct business with a simple philosophy: if we would not drink it, we will not sell it.

“our approach to sales is minimalist.

“no flowery descriptions of flavors. no fairytale stories about monks and tea masters. no bullshit.

“we provide the tea. the experience is up to you.”

So, I joined their tea club to get an idea about the teas they sell.

The first shipment I got was January, and it was a selection of seven Wuyi yancha, or “Rock Oolong”. Wuyi yancha are among the most highly prized, and highly priced, of Oolong teas. They are grown in the Wuyi mountains of Norther Fujian, China. As with wine, the struggle of the tea bush to survive on these rocky slopes and tough conditions concentrates the flavor in the few leaves they do produce.

On the white2tea website these sell for between $10 and $25 dollars for 25g.

Each sample is around 8g, which is a bit heavy for a single dose, or very light for more than one.

The first Wuyi yancha tea I try is Iron Arhat.

Having read a bit about white2tea’s main man, Paul Murray, in this article from Saveur, “The Pu-Erh Brokers of Yunnan Province,” I suspect they err on the heavy side, so I do as well.

Iron Arhat, known in Chinese as tiěluóhàn, or literally, “Iron Warrior Monk”, is one of the the “Four Great Oolongs”.

I used the full sample for one batch, around 8g, brewed with water just off the boil, in a 140ml porcelain Gaiwan.

The flavors are wonderfully integrated, with none dominating. Some sweetness and minerality, with a touch of creaminess and roast flavors. Amazing length and complexity, with an aftertaste that just doesn’t quit. Great re-steepability, as well, surviving and thriving well past nearly 4 cups of water, with only a bit of grip and tannin showing up in the later, longer steeps. An amazing tea to savor as its tastes evolve over the course of the steeps.

#Cha #Tea #Wuyiyancha #yancha #Oolong #RockOolong #white2tea #white2teaclub