White tea,of all the tea types, is the least processed.The young leaves and buds are simply left to dry naturally.While tea won’t really go “bad”, it can get aged.Fresh picked white tea is refered as a “raw” tea and it is believed to have a higher amount of beneficial properties over time.
The overall flavour profile of white tea includes date, vanilla, chocolate, mild, subtle, delicate, floral, grassy, honey, fruity, melon, peach and sweet.The grassy,floral and light flavor will slowly reveal a more mellow and honey flavor after aging.
Types of White Tea
White teas can be classified into five different types: Silver Needle(Bai Hao Yin Zhen) , White Peony(Bai Mu Dan), Tribute White (Gong Mei), Long-lived White.
Silver Needle is a highly prized tea and the most sought after white tea. The shape should be uniform with no stems or leaves and should have long, needle-like silvery tips. This tea has a pale golden infusion with a sweet floral aroma and a light woodsy body.
White Peony is also a premium quality tea. It consists of two leaves and a silvery bud and has a richer, yet shimmery golden color and texture. It has a sweet, yet nutty taste with a slightly roasted finish. Because white peony lingers longer on the palate, it is an excellent white tea to blend with.
Tribute White is a good quality white tea, though of lesser standing than Silver Needle and White Peony. It consists of young leaves without buds and the taste is darker and fuller, with a bold finish.