Appearance & Taste
The dry Gong Mei tea leaves are pretty similar to Shou Mei – a bunch of scattered dead leaves. However, as an opposite of its unimpressive appearance, the taste of the tea is very pleasant as it has a mellow and fresh floral aroma and a long-lasting sweet aftertaste with unique white tea flavour. Our 2015 Gong Mei has been aged for several years, and as a result, it also contains a jujube and lotus aroma. The colour of the tea soup is in clear bright orange/yellow without any impurities.
Adjust the amount of tea based on your own taste
1）For simple glass vessel/teapot brewing:
Use 3g Shou Mei for 125ml teacup or Gaiwan, 6g Shou Mei for 250ml glass or 12g Shou Mei for 500ml teapot.
Use 100°C hot water to infuse the tea leaves for around 5-6 minutes. Re-steep for around two or three times.
2）Using Gongfu Style:
The detailed brewing guide is below:
- Warm the teaware with hot water. Discard the water afterward
- Add 5g of tea leaves (1g tea for every 30ml to 50ml water or adjust by personal taste)
- Fill the teaware with 100°C hot water.
- Infuse the tea for around 5s for the first brew, while the second brew is around 10s, then gradually increase steeping time for subsequent brews
- Can be refilled for 4-5 times.
The origin of this Gong Mei is Pan Xi Town, Fu Ding City, Fujian province in China. 90% of the area in Pan Xi town belongs to high mountain area, with an overall elevation of around 600-1200 metres. The forest coverage rate of this town is over 88% while the greening rate is over 96%. Its primitive environment manages to preserve many ancient trees, with 318 registered well-known ancient trees in the area.
In the morning and evening, the mountains are surrounded by clouds, fogs and mists, so the rainfall there is abundant. Despite the high elevation of the entire town, there is still plenty of sunlight for better growth of the tea trees, which is conducive to the synthesis of amino acids and nitrogen-containing aromatics inside teas. The quality of the white tea produced from Pan Xi town is always at the top grades.
Gong Mei’s picking standard is of “one tea bud with two or three leaves”, which is very similar with White Peony. However, normally the raw material of Gong Mei is Xiao Cai Cha which is a group species mixed cultivar widely planted in the northern Fujian for thousands of years. In compare, Sliver Needle and White Peony is using Fu Ding Da Bai or Zheng He Da Bai tea leaves as raw material. The tea leaves of Xiao Cai Cha are smaller than Da Bai tea leaves, and because of this, Going Mei was also called ‘Xiao Cai Cha’ in the past. It was used as tribute in the Qing dynasty. In Chinese, a tribute is pronounced as ‘Gong’, so this particular white tea is so called ‘Gong Mei’.
However, due to the low yield of Xiao Cai Cha nowadays, our Gong Mei was made by Fu Ding Da Bai leaves instead of Xiao Cai Cha.