Yellow Tea from Teaneer Teas and Vijayalakshmi Natural Farm

Here is a product that I have not seen before. This is a yellow tea from the Nilgiri District of south India. This sample was provided by Teaneer Teas from the Vijayalakshmi Natural Farm.

Yellow teas are rarely found being produced outside of China. Even within China, the art of producing yellow tea is in decline. It will be interesting to compare this to the two other yellow teas currently in my collection, both of which are from China.

Look for Teaneer Teas on Facebook, Twitter, WordPress, and LinkedIn. You may also view the profile for VijayaLaskshmi Natural Farm at the Tealet Teas website by clicking here.

The sample pack is opened, and the appearance of the Teaneer Yellow Tea is very different from the Chinese yellow teas that I have come across. Let the journey begin…

Teaneer Yellow Tea Dry Leaves
Teaneer Yellow Tea Dry Leaves

The dry leaves have a fairly uniform dark yellow to dark brown color with some silver tips. The majority of the leaves are whole and attached to the stem, which clearly shows a three leaf and small bud pluck. A few leaves are separated from the stem, but appear to be whole leaves or almost whole fragments. The leaves appear to be hand twisted. The aroma has scents of hay with a light smokiness.

Three grams of leaves were placed in a five ounce (150 ml) ceramic infusion cup. Purified spring water was heated to 175°F (75°C). The leaves were infused for two minutes.

Teaneer Yellow Tea 1st Infusion
Teaneer Yellow Tea 1st Infusion

The first infusion produced a liquor with a light, pale yellow color, clear and transparent. The aroma has scents of hay, light smoke, and a very light ripe fruit hint. The body is light, with a delicate and soft feel. The taste has strong notes of hay, grass, and floral (hyacinth/lavender). The aftertaste is floral and pleasant.

Teaneer Yellow Tea 2nd Infusion
Teaneer Yellow Tea 2nd Infusion

The second infusion produced a liquor with a slightly deeper shade of pale yellow color. The aroma retains the scents of hay and light smoke. The body remains light. The taste has a better balance, and retains the hay, grass, and hyacinth/lavender notes.

Teaneer Yellow Tea 3rd Infusion
Teaneer Yellow Tea 3rd Infusion

The third infusion produced a liquor slightly lighter in color than the second infusion. The aroma has only slightly lightened. The taste has lightened slightly, and retains the same basic characteristics, with the addition of a slight mineral taste appearing. Honestly, I think this third infusion has been my favorite of the three. The taste is not as strong, and is better balanced than the other two infusions.

Teaneer Yellow Tea Infused Leaves
Teaneer Yellow Tea Infused Leaves

The infused leaves have a uniform fresh green color, which was unexpected given the fairly dark color of the dry leaves. There are very few fragments, and those few are very large. Most leaves are whole and attached to a stem. Stems show anywhere from one leaf and bud to three leaves and bud. These are very fresh, healthy, and impressive looking leaves. The aroma is fresh hay and dandelion flowers.

At first, I was not feeling too strongly for this Teaneer Yellow Tea. However, as I sipped the second and third infusions, I began to better understand the tastes. I am planning to give this tea a quick rinse as I progress through the sample to see if that will eliminate some of the stronger hay and barnyard tastes that I felt in the first infusion. The look of the leaves both dry and infused displayed the care that was put into plucking and processing them. The aroma was consistent with other yellow teas, consisting mainly of hay scents.

As I mentioned earlier, I will be interested to compare this Yellow Tea side by side with my Chinese yellow teas. This was a great experience, and I thank Vijayalakshmi Natural Farm and Teaneer Teas for providing this sample. Cheers!

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Yellow Bud Yellow Tea from Tealet Teas and Vivid Huoshan

On October 1st of 2013, my journey through the world of tea tasting took me to the Vivid Tea Garden in Huoshan, Anhui Province, China. This sample of Yellow Bud Yellow Tea was purchased from Tealet Teas, who sourced the tea directly from Vivid Huoshan. To view Tealet’s profile for Vivid Huoshan, please click here.

Although this is not my first yellow tea, it is the first that I have had the opportunity to spend time properly reviewing. Yellow tea is one of the more rare forms of tea, as the “yellowing” process that makes this tea distinct from white and green teas has in large part been lost to the past. There are some in the tea business who market their teas as yellow, but is technically processed as a green tea. However, there are a few authentic yellow teas that can be found. Without seeing the physical processing of the tea leaves, it is difficult to differentiate a true yellow tea from a green imposter. If Elyse at Tealet says this is authentic yellow tea, then I will certainly take her word as fact.

As I open this sample pack, an unusually sweet smell hit me. This is not a green tea, nor a white tea. This is something special. Let the journey begin…

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The dry leaves of the Yellow Bud Yellow Tea have a yellowish-green to green color. The leaves are fully intact, appearing to be one leaf and bud, with the occasional two and a bud. There is a very low amount of breakage. The aroma of the leaves are unusually sweet, most similar to dry fruit. The length of the leaves range from 0.5 inches (13 mm) to 1.25 inches (32 mm). Some leaves appear that they may have been very lightly twisted, while others appear to may have taken this shape naturally during processing.

The standard preparation method was used for this sample. Filtered tap water was heated to 175ºF (80ºC). Eight grams of tea were placed in a 32 ounce (950 ml) glass teapot. The leaves were infused in the water for 2 minutes.

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The first infusion produced a light yellowish-gold liquor, clear and transparent. The aroma of the liquor is delicately sweet and floral, with a slight vegetal scent. The liquor has a light body and a very mellow texture. The taste is delicate, with a nice balance of floral and very light sweet and vegetal notes. There is no bitterness to the taste. The finish and aftertaste are light and floral. This tea leaves the mouth and throat feeling refreshed.

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The second infusion produced a slightly darker liquor, but still a light yellowish-golden color. The aroma is slightly more floral, less sweet, and maintains the slight vegetal scent. The liquor maintains a light body. The taste has a stronger floral flavor, with vegetal and very light sweet notes. The aftertaste remains floral and refreshing. This second infusion was arguably more tasteful than the first infusion.

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The third infusion produced a liquor more similar in color to the first infusion. The aroma remains floral with a very light vegetal scent. The taste is also very similar to the first infusion. It is slightly lighter than the second infusion, but retained the floral flavor with light vegetal notes. The aftertaste remains floral and light.

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The infused leaves have a lively, fresh light green to green color. Fully intact leaves from standalone buds to one and two leaves with bud. Few leaf fragments, mostly fully intact buds and leaves. The aroma is of fresh wet leaves and light flowers. The leaves have a soft feel with moderate durability, suggesting that a fourth infusion may be able to produce an acceptable flavor.

As a yellow tea should be, this Yellow Bud Yellow Tea from Vivid Huoshan displays characteristics of both white and green teas, and yet has characteristics that are unique to yellow teas alone. The flavor is delicate and void of bitterness, like a white tea. It also maintains the fresh vegetal notes of a green tea. The smell of the dry leaves is unusually sweet, unlike a white or green tea. I do not understand why this art of tea is dying off. It is a perfect combination of white and green tea. The skill involved in processing this tea is evident in the infused leaves. As usual, this is a great find by Tealet Teas. I am excited to try future teas from Vivid Huoshan, as it is clear that they put much care in to their teas. Thanks Tealet and Vivid Huoshan!

Thank you for taking your time to read this review. Please leave a comment and start a discussion.