This cold brewed tea easily tops our list of favorite warm weather beverages. It is crisp, extremely refreshing with a melon finish and nicely calming. Want some more good news? Since the only contents are tea and water you don’t get any ‘sugar mouth’ after swallowing. What you do get is the icy smooth texture and light crisp flavors of melon, green apple and pine. Do you want even more good news? This tea comes from wild green tea trees that are between 90-100 years old, which is extraordinarily rare for green tea. Trees that old produce far more interesting flavor, fragrance and wild tea tree feeling than young, cultivated trees could ever imagine.
The tea is from the first spring pick, but priced like a tea harvested in the off season as they take both the inner bud and the first tender leaves making it quite affordable. It certainly can be brewed hot, but truly shines when one mixes 1T of leaves with 1 quart/1 liter of cool water placed overnight in the refrigerator. Next day strain and drink. Second infusion with half the amount of water for 2 hours at room temperature yields even more goodness. If you are pressed for time, doing the first infusion at room temperature will shorten the brewing time to 2 hours. On a really hot day add in some ice cubes made from the tea for maximum chill effect without diluting the flavor.
This is a Guizhou Province green tea, so like the other greens from that area it goes really well with spicy food like BBQ. Other summer matches include fresh fruit-watermelon, grapes, papaya, etc.-and fruit or vanilla based ice creams. If you drink this tea with good quality coconut ice cream get ready to be impressed.
Storage: Store unused portions sealed in an airtight bag away from light in the freezer at 5F/-15C or below. If freezer space is not available then put in the coldest part of your refrigerator.
Brewing water: Poland Spring (called Origin Brand in some areas) brand mineral water produces the finest results. Soft water, distilled water and hard water will ruin this tea. Tap water varies wildly and is best avoided as well. If you don't have Poland Spring (called Origin Brand in some areas) brand mineral water available please see good substitutions on our water page.
Brewing temperature: 75F/24C
Brewing method: 5g tea leaves (~1 heaping Tablespoon), 1 quart/1L of 75F/24C water for 2 hours and then strain out the tea leaves and refrigerate. Alternately put the tea into the water and refrigerate both overnight, then strain out the tea leaves and drink. For the 2nd infusion use 1/2 the amount of water 2 hours at room temperature.
Notes: This tea can be brewed hot but is far superior cold brewed.