|A tea shop|
Fresh tea leaves are baked to remove the bitter taste. Quality green tea is picked around Pure Brightness (beginning around April 4-6) and Grain Rain (beginning around April 19-21). The water is clear and the leaves remain green.
The temperature of water should be varied according to the type of green tea. Generally, water temperature of 85 Celsius degree is the best.
Well known ones include Longjing from the West Lake, Biluochun from Wu County, Suzhuo, Jiangsu Province, Huangshan Maofeng from Mt. Huangshan in Anhui, and Junshan Silver from the Hills of Junshan, Dongting Lake , Hunan Province.
The tonic effect of green tea has long been known. Its radiation-resistance effect makes it a top choice for people who sit before computers for long hours. Since it reportedly helps keep one fit and has a whitening effect on skin color, women prefer it.
Fresh tea is not appropriate for everyone, as some unwholesome substances may not have oxidized because of its certain medical effect.
The most famous include Qi Hong, Dian Hong and Ying Hong. Hong means red; It is called Hong Cha, red tea, in Chinese.
Qi Hong originates from Qimen, Anhui Province. It has been the favorite black tea among Chinese black tea connoisseurs since it was developed in 1876. By 1939 this type accounted for one-third of black tea consumed in China. Qihong, Darjiling from India and Uva from Sri Lanka are the world's three major types of black tea.
Dian Hong is from Yunnan as Dian is the short name for Yunnan. The area's favorable climate ensures the widespread production of black tea, especially in southern and western areas.
Ying Hong is from Yingde, Guangdong. The British royal family enjoyed its unique sweetness with the flavor of milk.
Oolong tea reminds tea gourmets of gongfu tea, which features a whole set of tea wares from a small oven to a pot and tiny cups. Gongfu means skill. Tea is poured into tiny cups one by one. The mellowness of oolong tea as well as that of friendship is strengthened as time passes by. The three major oolong growth areas are Fujian, Guangdong, and Taiwan. Tieguanyin has become the representative of oolong tea although the most precious is Dahongpao (Big red robe), which was once used as a tribute.
Tea compressed into the shape of brick is called brick tea. It is very popular among the Tibetan, Mongolian and Uigur for making yak butter tea or milk tea. For nomads, it is easy to transport. There are many places in China producing brick tea, including Hunan, Hubei, Sichuan, Yunnan and Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. Sichuan is the largest producer, while pu erh tea is grown in Yunnan province. Pu erh has come into vogue among white-collar workers in major cities owing to its unique earthy mellowness.
Scented tea is a mixture of flowers with green tea, black tea or oolong tea. The flowers include jasmine, orchid, plum, gardenia, rose, and sweet-scented osmanthus with jasmine being the most popular. There are strict rules about the proportion of flowers to tea. If there are too many flowers, the scent of flowers will dilute that of tea; if too few, the tea is not perfect. Scented tea is sweet, pleasant and delightful to the palate. Fuzhou in Fujian Province and Suzhou in Jiangsu Province have long been famous for jasmine tea.