It turns out that China regularly determines the best teas to highlight the most outstanding species from all variety. Although there are different opinions about who exactly should enter the notorious list, most of the celebrities in it are present unconditionally.
The history of tea counts more than a thousand years. Once upon a time, Lu Yu wrote a treatise “The Tea Canon”, in which conditionally divided the whole of China into nine regions producing tea. Since then, every imperial dynasty has chosen its favorite.
For example, during the reign of the Tang Dynasty, Yangxian Cha was loved, about which they said: “Until the Son of Heaven will not take pleasure in Yangxian Cha, the flowers do not dare to appear in the eyes.” Under the emperors of the Song family, among the drinks to be offered was the Fujian Jianzhou tea. In those days, even a special garden of imperial tea was created for this species.
When Ming was in fashion, tea from the U-i mountains was collected before the summer rains began. By the end of the era of this dynasty and with the beginning of the reign of Qing, new types of teas, as well as the famous places where they were grown, have come to the forefront. The real classification of tea began only with the formation of the People’s Republic of China.
Then it began to reveal the very ten famous teas. It includes virtually the entire range of these Chinese drinks. There are green and yellow, turquoise and red teas there. Most of these species have long been known throughout the world. Today, in times of market economy, PR and advertising play a significant role in choosing a buyer, it is not surprising that on our list, periodic teas change places.
It should also be noted that the rapid development of the tea industry in recent decades and the interest in this drink have led to the emergence of a large number of twins. So the acquisition of truly original tea has become a difficult matter. Therefore, deciding to purchase one of these types, one must also remember the dependence of its quality on the place of production and the time of collection.
After all, tea, even collected at the same plantation, but at different times, will have different taste characteristics and qualities. Yes, and bushes of one kind, but growing in different places, will also give a different result.
Tea of this variety is grown in dozens of places, but the one that belongs to the top ten is produced only in the Xihu district of Zhejiang province. After all, each place has its own microclimatic conditions and the specifics of the environment. Yes, and the name of the place can hide a dirty trick. So, included in our rating, Dongtin Bilochun is grown near the Dongting mountains near Taihu Lake, that area has a unique microclimate. But also near Dongting Lake in Hunan Province, tea of the same species is also grown, but it does not have those unique properties inherent in its namesake. And there are many such examples, almost every excellent tea has its own double. However, let’s return to the top ten of the best and most famous teas in China.
This tea excels in the list by right. He literally bewitched countless people from the very moment of his appearance. Even during the Qing Dynasty, the Emperor Kangxi, visiting the “marching palace” in Hangzhou, ordered the local Lungjin tea to be included in the list of official teas for offering. Later, Emperor Qian Lung appreciated the unique aroma of the drink when, while traveling to the south at the foothill at the foot of Mount Shifeng, he sipped so delicious tea that he immediately ordered the fencing of eighteen tea trees located right there. The tea was called imperial. This evaluation of the drink by the “Son of Heaven” quickly spread its glory throughout the country, today in China there is hardly anyone who does not know the name of Xihu Longjin. This tea has four precious qualities, which determine its reputation. First of all, this is an emerald color, followed by a perfect aroma and taste, do not forget about the wonderful taste.To fully appreciate the excellent drink, you need to take a 200-millimeter glassware, fill 4 grams of tea and pour clean and soft water with a temperature of 80 degrees. To make tea, three minutes is enough.
There are many fruit trees near Taihu Lake, among them Bilochun tea is grown. Crowns of pears, peaches, mandarins and plums serve as umbrellas for low tea bushes. Trees closely intertwined with branches and roots, while the leaves of the tea breathe air, which is filled with the scents of flowering and ripening fruit. It is during the ripening of fruit trees that raw materials are collected for the production of exquisite Bilochun tea. This allows the drink to receive a unique fruity aroma and taste, although it is usually determined by the microclimate and the characteristics of the soil. The main features of Bilochun is the early collection and exclusive selection of the tenderest kidneys. In total, there are seven varieties of this type of tea, in accordance with quality. To get 1 kilogram of special quality tea, one must break about one hundred and forty thousand unblown kidneys. Referring to the special qualities of this tea, it should be noted that its creation from young and tender leaves brings many amino acids and polyphenolic compounds into the composition, which has a beneficial effect on health promotion. Outwardly the tea is fragile, has a thin spiral shape, it is covered with villi. Bilochun with its thick aroma and rich taste got the glory of a drink with a floral and fruit flavor. The color of the magic liquid is light green jasper, and the leaves have a light green shining appearance, which is beautiful even after the ceremony. Such tea is also often referred to as “one tenderness and three freshnesses”, understanding as a tenderly torn leaf with a kidney, and under freshness – a light aroma, taste and color.
This tea belongs to the yellow group. It grows on Mount Junshan, which rises right in the middle of Lake Dong Thin in Hunan Province. Tea grown in Jiushan is used since the time of the Qing dynasty, then about 9 kilograms were delivered to the court for a year. An indispensable condition for the collection was the time – before the beginning of the period of grain rains, tea should have one kidney and one leaf, besides being abundantly covered with white villi. And to the collection process, serious demands were put forward, expressed by a special rule of “nine unbroken”. According to him, tea could not be collected on a rainy day, except that one should make sure that there was no dew on the kidney, it was not hollow or purple. It is forbidden to tear even a slightly opened kidney, damaged by frost or insects, and also sluggish, long or short. And the process of processing tea is very scrupulous and consists of eight stages. It is believed that it is better to use a glass or crystal glass to brew Injen tea. It is his transparency and purity that will allow us to appreciate the full beauty of the shapes of silver needles, and also to enjoy the look of a wonderful dance performed by tea leaves.
This drink belongs to the group of green teas. It grows near the famous Huangshan Mountain in Anhui Province. Once upon a time the emperors chose this tea for offering, and it still remains a gift option, also called a “state treasure.” Every year, with the onset of the spring holiday of Qingming in the mountainous regions of Huangshan Taohuafeng and Ziguangge, tea of the highest quality is created. Huangshan Maofeng tea is divided into 4 categories: special, first, second and third. The very same special is also divided into three groups: the higher, the middle and the lower. The remaining categories have two subgroups. This tea, like some others, has a “Maofen” component in its composition, but unlike other representatives there are yellow-gold tea leaves, and the color of ivory liquid. When brewing tea is not recommended to use dishes made of clay, especially teapots from the lilac variety.It will be best to use either porcelain gaiwan (a cup with a lid and without a handle), or ordinary transparent glassware. In the tank you have to pour tea with pure water with a temperature of 80 degrees and brew three minutes, as a result you will get a clean infusion with the shades of that yellow almond and the ivory itself. In this case, the drink will be perfumed with the delicate aroma of mycelium, literally intoxicating with its freshness.
This tea stands out for its special features even in the group of its red fellow Gunfu Cha, produced only in China. Abbreviated drink called Tsihun. According to historical documents, once Nong Gancheng, a native of Zhide visited Fujian, where he discovered that red tea is very popular there. Returning to the province of Anhui, he decided to start a tea business in order to make a profit. The tea house was opened to them in Tsimen province. There, Nun, following the learned Fujian methods of processing red tea, began to produce a very good product. For the time being, only green species were produced here, but seeing the good demand and the cost of the novelty, the producers quickly reoriented to the production of red tea. So, unexpectedly, Tsimen County became one of the producers of red tea varieties. The popularity of local varieties not only in China, but also outside the country was due to its excellent taste qualities, which arose by local unique conditions for the growth of shrubs. Yes, and local producers have continuously improved the processing of tea. This is what allowed the unique aroma of Zihong to gain a foothold in the top ten of the best teas of the country. After brewing tea, it retains its strong aroma for quite a long time, creating the feeling that the whole room is saturated with a honey smell with a smell of orchid smells. This flavor even got its own name “Tsimen’s fragrance”. Tsihun is also called “outstanding among teas.” To appreciate the taste, you should use porcelain dishes. It is best not to add sugar, milk, or any other additives to the beverage. After all, this tea itself is self-sufficient. A set of such qualities made it the most expensive among the red teas and the most desired.
Among the green teas, this tea is in a special position. The beginning of its production dates back to 1905, when the decline of imperial China began. The external similarity of tea with pumpkin seeds, the flat form of leaves gave it the name “Guapian”, which means “flat seeds”. The main production site was the province of Luan, which eventually gave the full name of tea – Luan Guapian. Now tea is produced in Anhui province, bushes grow on the jagged low mountains, at an altitude of 100 to 600 meters above sea level. Here the average annual temperature is 14.5 degrees. Guapian is very different from his relatives. After all, his collection takes place at the height of the rainy season, when the stormy vegetation of tea bushes is just beginning. Collectors tear off only the kidney and two or three first leaves, after which the harvest is sorted. From it, unpaired buds and rough leaves are removed. After that, already homogeneous raw materials are fried by hand in three different ways in special pans. Tea is given the shape of the seeds, drying them to a normal moisture content of 5-7%. Used in the collection, roasting and drying of special technology allowed the tea Liuan Guapian become a representative of this prestigious list of eminent teas. Quite a high price and a special position of tea on the market always attract fans of this drink, who want to get maximum pleasure.
This green tea is created in Taiping County, Anhui Province. The bushes grow mainly in the Hawken area near Taihu Lake. On three sides there is water, and on the fourth side the terrain is protected by a mountain ridge with peaks that look like an inverted tripod. The peaks are called Phoenix, Monkey and Rooster.Plantations are located at an altitude of 777 meters among green mountains with hats of clouds and fogs in a local climate of subtropical monsoons. Everything gives an absolutely unique microclimate. Hawkeye began to grow at the end of the Qing dynasty. Then tea growers from Nanking opened a representative office in Taiping County, which bought local tea growing around the mountain peaks. Gradually became popular houken tea, obtained by selecting young and tender leaves and kidneys. Over time, one of the tea vendors, named Van Kuuchen, working in the fields near the Phoenix peak, selecting the youngest and most delicate leaves and buds, created a new kind of tea called Kuy and called it his name. The excellent qualities of the new drink and its specific capabilities made it the best of all the teas of Hawken. Therefore, over time, the name changed its original name and turned into Hawkuy. This tea is straight and flat. Two of his leaves wrap around the kidney and look completely smoothed out. Often the tea is described as follows: “Two points of Hawkeye do not rash, do not protrude and do not bend.” The veins, which are painted in a uniform dark green leaf color, conceal a red tint, called the “thread of red silk”. The first brewing of the drink gives a very strong flavor, the second – a rich taste. The original and deep smell is not lost not at the third, nor at the fourth brew.
This tea belongs to the green group and it is created in the area of Xinyang City, Henan Province. Most of the bushes grow in mountain areas in the south of Xinyang County. This area is described as: “Five cloud mountains and two ponds, black and white dragons.” In this elite list, this tea came only in 1959, although the tea traditions in this region date back to the era of Eastern Zhu, when Confucius and Lao Tzu lived. But Mao-chien itself appeared only in the era of the Ming Dynasty, when pressed tea gradually began to change loose, as new production allowed to process fresh leaves from old ones. Tea from old leaves was called leafy, or “rough” tea, but young leaves were used to make kidney or “thin” tea. During the reign of the Qing dynasty, tea making technologies stepped much further and “delicate” tea began to be processed even more skillfully. The texture of the finished sheet became even more thin and dense, with white hairs, and at its tip there was a point. Then the tea got its present name – Maojian or “hairs and a point”.
This tea is a representative of the genus Oolong, or turquoise teas. The main place for its growth is the Phoenix Mountain, or Fenghuangshan, which is in Chaoyan County, Guangdong Province. Tea traditions here have developed historically, the region is located on a plain with hills that is on the northern foothills. Plantations are located at an altitude of 1100 meters above sea level. Local microclimate here is ideal for growing tea, they are engaged in it since the time of the Song Dynasty. On the plantations you can find cultural tea trees, which are 3-4 centuries old. Today, the city of Fenghuang is known primarily for producing the famous Fenghuang Dancun tea. The local mountain teas are sometimes called narcissistic, they have a rather complicated classification. The leaves on the trees ripen at different times, their leaves are often of unequal shape. Each separate group of local plants also has its own special characteristics besides form. That is why tea and got the name Dantsun, which means “piece” or “single” bushes. For today in Fenghuang Dantong tea distinguish more than 80 subspecies! Initially, the tea was called Nyaozu Cha, or “bird’s beak”. The current name of tea was only in 1956. According to legend during the reign of Sun in these parts, the phoenix bird brought a twig of a special tea tree, which gave rise to all the diversity of this species here. They mention the “Sun” tree, it grows on Mount Nyaodongshan at an altitude of 1000 meters, near the village of Lizhaiping.Here all the trees are very old, one of them is called even a “transmitting tree”, considering it to be the bearer of the original leaf. The age of the elder is more than 400 years, but it is still full of life and strewn with green foliage. Chai Fenghuang has three varieties – Dantsun, Lanzai and Shuixian, each of which is again divided into varieties. However, the best of all the teas of this group is Danchun. Their fame was promoted by a beautiful view, sweet taste, deep aroma and emerald color. To reveal the maximum this tea is not so simple, the masters use for this purpose the Chaozhou version of the tea ceremony “Gongfu Cha”.
This tea belongs to the category of South Fufuan Oolongs. Among them, the most famous, perhaps, is Teguanin. It is no accident that his connoisseur is called the “king of tea.” In the Tao tradition, the drink is also called the tea of five tastes, since the properly prepared Teguanin contains just 5 tastes: bitter, sweet, spicy, salty and spicy. Usually it is considered that there is only one shade in tea, in teguanino there are all of them. According to tradition in Anxi County, Fujian Province, once lived a very devout tea-cup. This man daily in the morning and evening brought the cup of fresh tea to the Goddess of Mercy Guanyin, asking in this way to bless and appreciate his work. As a reward for this, he appeared to him in a dream, showing a secret place among the mountains, where an unusual tea tree grew. Having woken up, the tea-pot did indeed find the plant in the indicated place. The resulting tea, which has an unrivaled flavor and taste, he named in honor of his patron Guanyin. Later, the word iron was added to the word. Many believe that tea is obliged to this fact by the color of its leaves, which when fermented acquire shades of red iron along the edges, in twigs and veins. Local monks believe that the name of tea associated with the time of its collection – in the fall, it is this time of year in their beliefs and relates to metal. Tea is grown in Fujian province in the northeast of China. Local red earth soils and climate favor the cultivation of this particular species. The best specimens are grown in the foothills of Anxi. There are frequent fogs, high humidity, and altitude plays a role. It is here, as elsewhere in China, especially strictly observe the observance of the special, mountain technology of growing bushes and subsequent processing. For tea of the highest quality, the top three or four leaves are collected, although the collection takes place during the day, it is believed that the best is morning tea.