About White Tea
White tea is among the minimally processed types of tea. It derives its name from the white hair on its young buds, which protect the plant from insects while harvesting. White tea traces its origin to China during the reign of Emperor Huizong’s rule of the Song Dynasty (960 – 1297), who was gifted this kind of tea after grinding young tea buds into a silvery-white powder and whisking it into hot water. It was produced commercially for the first time in the Fujian province of China in the 1700s. The first loose leaf white tea was developed from two plant varieties- Da Bai and Da Hao in China. Today, white teas are considered a delicacy with their delicate, rare and aromatic flavours.
What makes white tea different from others?
While all kinds of tea are harvested from the same plant- camellia sinensis, factors such as geography, length of the harvesting period, and extent of processing are some factors responsible for a distinct tea type. Both white tea loose leaf as well as its bud have a slightly fuzzy appearance. The brewing of white tea results in light gold colour with a floral fragrance. Unlike black tea, it is minimally processed to impart a distinct flavour and colour. White tea is generally less bitter and assertive than black tea. It is also believed to have a lower caffeine content than green or black tea. However, the extent of caffeine also depends upon the geographical location, processing method and brewing technique.
How is a white tea produced?
After harvesting, the white tea leaves are allowed to wither quickly. Subsequently, they are dried in the natural sunlight or a controlled environment using heat vents or drying chambers. Some of them may be steamed or exposed to low heat to help them dry quickly and prevent oxidation. This gives the tea a light flavour and colour with rich antioxidants.
What are the health benefits of white tea?
White tea is known for its fruity and citrusy flavour and several health benefits. It is loaded with antioxidants called polyphenols, including catechins. These antioxidants prevent cell damage by countering free radicals in the body. These polyphenols are also known to avert the risk of heart damage. Moreover, the presence of caffeine and catechins like epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) help combat obesity and aid weight loss. White tea is also rich in fluoride, catechins and tannins, which fight bacteria and promote sound dental health. White tea also protects against certain types of cancers, Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson’s disease.
Types of white tea
Silver needle, is the most prized white tea for its floral aroma and golden colour. It is derived from large, full buds covered with white, downy hair, which lend it a silver colour. An authentic silver needle comes from China’s Fujian province. White Peony is a newer variety of white tea derived from young buds and nascent tea leaves. There is also a Monkey-picked white tea made from the buds and young leaves of the tea plant. It derives its name from a legend according to which it used to be harvested by Buddhist-trained monkeys from the highest tea trees in mountainous regions of China. In India, the white tea variety is called Darjeeling White tea which has different characteristics than Chinese teas but is processed in a similar way.
Where to buy white tea online?
You can buy white tea online, which is a convenient and hassle-free option. However, you must always choose reputed brands to enjoy the authentic flavour and colour. CelesTe teas are handpicked from the best tea gardens across India and do not contain any artificial flavours or preservatives to ensure you enjoy their delicate taste. We specialise in loose leaf white tea and hand made tea bags, which allows you to enjoy its wholesome flavour. Our exquisite range consists of rose white tea, lavender white tea, white ginger tea, chamomile tea and many more. Our signature and best selling white tea is called Amber Glow which fuses saffron with chamomile resulting in a blend with delicates notes. Hence, CelesTe should be your first choice for every white tea order.
How to prepare white tea?
- - Buy white tea online from a well-known brand
- - Brew it at a relatively low temperature of 175 to 190 F to retain its properties
- - Steep it for one to five minutes, depending upon the type of white tea
- - You don’t need to add sugar or milk due to its subtle flavour
- - Consume it freshly brewed hot with a light snack
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