Tea type
White Tea
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Hay, Herbs, Honeysuckle, Musty, Pine, Sweet, Thick
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Edit tea info Last updated by Whispering Pines Tea Company
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 15 sec 8 oz / 236 ml

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10 Tasting Notes View all

From Whispering Pines Tea Company

About the Tea
Our pure bud white tea is a very unique type of tea. Also known as yabao or white pu-erh, this tea is harvested in the late winter and sun-dried. It carries notes of pine needles in the aroma and a silky sweet mouthfeel with notes of rosemary, pine, and honeysuckle.

Our Wild Winter White Buds have the ability to be aged to develop more complex notes, similar to pu-erh. To age this tea, puncture a few dozen holes on each side of the packaging and store in a place away from strong odors and away from light and high humidity. Sun-dried teas will develop complex flavors over time. This tea is also very forgiving, and can be brewed however you see fit! The leaves will sink to the bottom of your cup should you choose not to strain them — this is my favorite way to drink this tea.


How to brew the perfect cup:
Steep 1 tablespoon of leaves
in 8 ounces of boiling water
for 5 minutes.

2nd infusion: 6 minutes
3rd infusion: 8 minutes

Sun-dried White Tea

Yunnan, China

March 2012

Caffeine Content


About Whispering Pines Tea Company View company

Whispering Pines Tea Company is dedicated to bringing you the most original, pure, beautiful tea blends. We use only the highest quality ingredients available to create additive-free teas teas inspired by the pristine wilderness of Northern Michigan. Our main focus is on customer satisfaction and quality.

10 Tasting Notes

72 tasting notes

Delicious. I treat this the same way I steep/drink my Longjing – Pour water at correct temp into a tall glass, leave buds/leaves in, drink until 1/3 left and then add more water. Repeat until flavour is gone. Sometimes I even mix the two together; there is no bitterness that I can taste when doing this.
By itself:
The aroma is full of sweet pine. It reminds me of Whispering Pine’s Sleeping Bear.
The taste is what you’d expect from a white tea: light, delicate and a very gentle aftertaste of honey.
The buds dance around the tall glass going up and down throughout out the session.

Boiling 8 min or more

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2460 tasting notes

One of two bedtime “Mini Cups” of tea. I packed this with because it’s new to me, and I’ve been fascinated by it since first seeing it – and now that it’s actually in my possession I think it smells really lovely dry; and I needed to try it sooner rather than later. This trip to Regina seemed like the quickest way to sample it.

I’d really like to write a longer, more thorough review but I’m super tired and it’s late, and I know my little sister’s gonna wake me up as soon as she can tomorrow morning. So I’ll be briefer than I want to be.

I was planning a shorter steep time, but my little sister’s Dad stopped by to drop some stuff off for her that she left as his place before heading to Mom’s for the weekend – and I ended up talking to him for nearly eight minutes while my tea sat in the kitchen steeping. I hadn’t seen him in over a year, and it was good catching up. We maybe have a weird relationship because he and my Mom got divorced when I was about… 13? But for nearly all my early childhood memories he was as much “my Dad” as my actual Dad was, sometimes more so. But after he and my Mom got divorced I no longer saw him on a regular basis – just whenever B (I’m gonna not reveal my sister’s name – not that I don’t in general trust Steepster people, I am after all very open about my name and life and such, but she’s really young/underage) was around.

But the point is; this is quite a forgiving tea just like is claimed in the tea description. It got very, very close to a ten minute steep albeit at a lower temperature, and it’s not bitter or astringent at all. In fact, it’s very sweet! I get incredibly prominent honey notes and a rich silky mouthfeel, as well at light notes of hay, oats, and rosemary. More of a sweet rosemary than a savory rosemary, though. I’m also drawing comparisons to the Corn Silk tea I tried not too long ago; I am definitely experiencing a sort of “corn chip” like flavour to this, but I don’t see anyone else has observed crazy that so I feel a little crazy admitting it.

I’ve been wondering lately if the way I view “pine” as a flavour is different than how others do; because when I think of “Pine notes” I think of the sort of pine flavour that’s so strong and common with Juniper berries; crisp, clean, a little woody? There’s no way I’m tasting that here; and I’m disappointed because this is the second WP blend I bought on BF described with “pine” as a flavour, and I’m just not getting it.

I loved this though! Despite seemingly absent pine notes and relatively different observations than others. Maybe my prolonged steep time messed with the flavours present? Or the balance of flavours?

And hey; despite trying to be concise in my wording this ended up long winded afterall. Darn!


I actually really like yabao. Although I think the one I tried from Norbu was the best so far. Verdant’s is super piney, which is neat, but it sounds like this one isn’t.


I feel like yabao is more pine wood than pine needle/juniper, maybe that’s the difference?

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1025 tasting notes

I haven’t written a note on this yet? Haha oops! I have had this tea for quite some time, in fact, my package is labelled ‘Wild Winter White Buds’, the previous name of this tea! Ah well, luckily it is somewhat of a puerh tea, so it has been um, aging? :D

I didn’t take detailed notes on this one, but I had a nice little gongfu session with it, did 2 rinses then short steeps. I combined later steepings into my mug, and actually got inspired to paint! I did my first ocean painting of the pictures I took on our trip and I am very pleased with how it turned out! Haha, but this note is supposed to be about tea, so I will talk about the tea.

This is a very tasty Yabao, with the delicious brown sugar notes I adore in it. It was woodsy and fresh yet still sweet. I think this one is even sweeter than Verdant’s version. It was perfect for a frigidly cold day and perfect to inspire me to paint. It also may have been the cup I was drinking the tea out of that inspired me. Regardless, this was a very tasty tea, and I plan to do more gongfu sessions to use up a bit more of my bag of this. Very good tea!

Picture from the session:

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484 tasting notes
Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

Happy New Year to you too!

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972 tasting notes

Continuing on with older samples! This one came from Mikumofu. What a unique and cute tea! It’s made up of little white tea buds (literal buds, with their protective outer layer and everything). They don’t have much of a scent while dry. I used the whole sample in my 8 ounce cup after looking at the suggestion of 1 T on the website.

It smells very herbal and reminds me of sheng in a way. The taste is actually quite musty, which I did not expect (almost like raspberry leaf or something). It’s a very herbal flavor. I can also taste some of the pine and rosemary notes mentioned in the description. The liquor feels quite thick in the mouth, although I wouldn’t necessarily call it smooth, as it leaves my mouth feeling a bit fuzzy. There’s a definite sweet aftertaste, similar to honeysuckle nectar. Overall, this is strange and it’s not something that I’d drink, but I’m glad I got to try it.

Flavors: Hay, Herbs, Honeysuckle, Musty, Pine, Sweet, Thick

200 °F / 93 °C 3 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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504 tasting notes

Ooh. Now this, I like.

I like it a lot.

It’s beautiful in my mouth. Almost sweet, incredibly silky. I’m not quite sure what this tastes like, but it is really good.

Yes, I could drink a lot of this.

And it’s inexpensive, as far as that goes, too. I will be getting some more of this with my next WP order and try aging it.


And I forgot to post about my kitty, Penny, again. It seems the antibiotics are starting to work as he’s been out and about this evening, wandering through the downstairs instead of hiding behind the couch. Yay!


Oh glad to hear!

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256 tasting notes

New tea from Whispering Pines, and 100th tasting note!

This tea is very pleasing to look at, coming in the form of little buds with silver down on them. Once brewed, the buds open up slightly. The aroma is, surprisingly, a lighter version of Zheng Shan Xiao Zhong, with musky pine and longan fruit sweetness. The taste is much more subtle and faintly sweet. It reminds me of a southern California garden in full sun with the fragrance of drying herbs, but not many flowers. Looking at the description later, rosemary was probably what I was thinking of, we have plenty of that around here! A very enjoyable light tea that I will experiment more with.

(This tea is now sold as Yabao on the website instead of Winter White Buds.)

Whispering Pines Tea Company

Oh, thanks for reminding me, gotta update that on here :)


That was fast, thanks for paying close attention to customer input!

Whispering Pines Tea Company

No worries, thanks for providing the input! How else would I survive? :-)

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276 tasting notes

Method: 1 tbsp, 8 oz, 208 degrees, 5 minutes, Forlife brew in mug strainer & Dr. Who mug

Dry Leaf Aroma: Lightly Evergreen

Brewing Aroma: Same as above

Flavor: Fascinating. This was a very mild and lovely tea. It definitely doesn’t look like most teas. The buds are very pretty. This wasn’t sweet, but it didn’t need any additives. It’s really hard for me to describe. I could taste several distinctive flavors, but aside from a lightly evergreen flavor, I couldn’t tell you what the rest of them were!

I think I am going to need to try this one a few more times, paying special attention to the flavors. Maybe over time I will be able to identify more. This one is absolutely worth the effort!

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec 3 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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