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Silver Needles

Yunnan, China

With notes of

  • Vanilla
  • Citrus
  • Stone Fruit
  • Ships Tuesday
  • Free in-store pick up

Silver Needle, also known as “Bai Hao Yin Zhen,” which literally translates to “White Down Silver Needles,” is a type of white tea that is made with only buds. The “white down” refers to the fine silver hairs that cover the buds. Historically, white tea production began in the late 18th century during the Qing Dynasty. The earliest records of Silver Needle production date back to the 1800's. It is thought that the tea was harvested from the buds of wild tea bushes and produced exclusively for the emperor.

White tea production is the most minimally processed tea type as it involves just a few steps: withering, drying, and sorting. Traditionally, tea leaves are withered and dried in the sun, but inclement weather conditions may require that the tea leaves be dried indoors. Due to their nominal processing, white teas primarily showcase the varietal and terroir more than any other tea type. However, the simplicity of white tea production does not mean that the process is easy. Tea producers must continuously assess the weather conditions and the readiness of the bud. If they wait even one extra day, the bud may sprout into leaves, and the quality of the Silver Needle will be compromised.