Sweet with notes of pine and flowers. This is a great white tea. I used a gaiwan and the entire sample pack and let it steep in 195 water for about 30 seconds. A very nice and complex flavor.
“Sweet with notes of pine and flowers. This is a great white tea. I used a gaiwan and the entire sample pack and let it steep in 195 water for about 30 seconds. A very nice and complex flavor.” Read full tasting note
“My dear friends and readers, I have a terrible confession, I am rather ill and a little bit worried. At first I had a sniffle and sore throat and I just assumed allergies (which apparently I don’t...” Read full tasting note
“I western brewed this in my red cast iron tea pot today to share with Hubby. It didn’t look like enough tea for a pot (especially since whites are very fluffy) but I trusted Gabriele that it was...” Read full tasting note
“A Yunnan silver needle. Interesting. I have yet to meet a Yunnan I didn’t love. The buds, as others mentioned, look like silver needle but not. They look like golden tips but not. What makes this...” Read full tasting note
This tea is produced in the Yunnan province, where pu’er –the most famous dark tea– comes from. Dian in Chinese is the shorter form of the word Yunnan.
The rest of the name refers to the appearance of the leaves; long buds, shaped like a needle (zhen), with a pale, silver hue (Yin).
TASTE: Full, intense, sweet, “taste of Yunnan”
Company description not available.
Yin ZhenTerre de Chine
yin zhenTerre des Chine
Yin ZhenTealicious Teas
Yin ZhenTea Cozy
My dear friends and readers, I have a terrible confession, I am rather ill and a little bit worried. At first I had a sniffle and sore throat and I just assumed allergies (which apparently I don’t have, still weirded out by that) but nope, this is something much more annoying. Not sure if it is a terrible cold or what, but it has decided to move to my lungs (like they always do) and I am coughing and wheezing up a storm. So I am unhappily living on lots of cold meds, expectorants, antihistamines, and my inhaler…long story short, I am super loopy and so glad that I take really long winded notes in my tea notebooks! It was actually me becoming ill when I first started my tea blogger that I came up with the idea of logging all my notes in a notebook ahead of time, certainly one of my better decisions.
Day two of our Nannuoshan adventure takes us to Yunnan, home of Puerh and a ton of other fascinating teas. One such tea is Dian Yin Zhen, a silver needle white tea whose name translates to Yunnan silver needle, very direct this time. It is important to distinguish that this silver needle is from Yunnan, because it is way different from its Fujian twin. See, Yunnan teas are definitely distinct, they have one of the more defined ‘terroir’ markers of tea with an at times really intense camphor to menthol note in taste and aroma, and if you are really lucky a distant smokiness. And sniffing the leaves did not disappoint, I found notes of hay, lettuce, melon, and a distinct note of sharp camphor and a hint of smoke. The aroma reminds me of a Sheng Puerh with a fruitier, sweeter tone to it, such is the beauty of tea from Yunnan!
Brewing the leaves is an adventure, the aroma really had me confused, if I had closed my eyes and sniffed I would have at first thought it was a Sheng. Upon closer nose examination I can detect notes of melon and crisp cucumber, along with that is the signature hay and strong camphor and faint smokiness. It is a pretty potent smelling pile of wet leaves. The liquid is fruity sweet with notes of melon and peaches with a bit of hay, and of course, crisp camphor.
First steeping, and let me say, if you are a fan of young Sheng you would love this tea. It is crisp with an accompanying fuzzy tingling from trichomes and gentle smoothness. It starts with a rich camphor and smokiness, this moves to hay and a bit of spinach, and a finish of lettuce and cucumber. This tea has a nice hui gan that really lasts and cools the throat.
Second time around this tea’s aroma takes on a slightly bready, yeasty, almost sourdough tone along with sweet straw and a bit of smoke and camphor at the finish. Tasting the tea, the camphor and smoke notes have definitely mellowed out a good bit, they are still present, but this time they are only at the finish. The beginning of the sip is sweet and fruity, with notes of peaches and hay, this moves to a yeasty bread sweetness along with a hint of sourness that transitions nicely to the camphorous finish. I have really mixed feelings on Dian Yin Zhen, it is a fascinating tea with intense flavors, but I am not sure if I like it, and this is definitely not the first Dian Yin Zhen I have had where I spend the entire sipping session not sure if I like it or not, and I certainly foresee many more sessions like this.
I western brewed this in my red cast iron tea pot today to share with Hubby.
It didn’t look like enough tea for a pot (especially since whites are very fluffy) but I trusted Gabriele that it was right (and it was). The leaves were white and furry covered.
When infused they turned a bright green.
This brewed up a light golden colour. It reminded me of a cross between a black and white tea. First there was that malty flavour that is always part of blacks along with sweet honey notes. A bit lighter were hay & wood notes and under that was a milky creamy flavour. This tea brewed well at a higher temperature (even higher than green!) with no bitterness- very full bodied but light.
I would consider getting this one. I just loved it (Hubby liked it too).
Flavors: Honey, Malt, Milk, Wood
A Yunnan silver needle. Interesting. I have yet to meet a Yunnan I didn’t love.
The buds, as others mentioned, look like silver needle but not. They look like golden tips but not. What makes this different is the downy fur covered buds are straw color. They are so soft to the touch.
The dry scent immediately says Yunnan. It’s part leather, pepper, and hay.
After about a 30 second steep at 195 F this looks colorless until poured. In the cup it seems a grayish or possibly green tinted honey.
The taste is everything I love about Yunnan tea. Absolutely no bitterness. It has a warm earthy flavor that lingers between leather, cave mineral, slightly mushroom, and loam. It almost has a smoky presence but I am pretty sure white tea is not fired to halt oxidation.
After sipping this I realized I have sampled something similar in the form of white puerh.
My Nannuoshan samples came in! Hooray! This was the first of the four I decided to try out; I know they offered to send more than that out to a person, but I knew I wouldn’t have time to review more than four promptly for them, so I limited the ones I requested. I picked out one silver needle – one of my favourite straight tea types, as well as two darkers oolongs for operation “explore more oolongs this year” and the one Pu’Erh they were offering, to explore that tea type a little further as well.
With all the samples coming in lately (Tea Ave. and Nannuoshan) as well as birthday stuff, I’m impressed that I’ve managed to balance drinking new teas and old teas as well as keeping my cupboard from puffing up. I’ve been hovering around 120 teas pretty consistently! And that’s a good number for me.
I enjoyed my first pot (both pots were done Western style) of this one early into the afternoon with my Dad; it was cool actually getting to pull out my tea set and share it with someone instead of just drinking on my own which is what I usually do. I should offer to share tea with Tre more often; as long as I’m brewing up something fun and flavoured he’s usually fairly interested if I don’t try to teach him about it.
I wish I’d asked my Dad’s impressions on this one; he has a history of not liking white tea at all and I’m wondering if, the more I serve it to him when he visits, that’s changing at all. He did have two cups of it though, so I know he didn’t hate it. That’s pretty high, even if unspoken, praise from him – when I made him Teavivre’s Jasmine Silver Needle he wouldn’t even finish one cup.
I found the first pot had a very soft, milky taste with a light floral edge to it which was really enjoyable. I know it was placebo, but the milky flavour made the tea liquor seem thicker and creamier to me. In the finish, I also noticed a bit of citrus flavour. While, apart from the creamy, milk note that made up most of the body flavour, the flavours in this tea were much more generic I think I liked this infusion just slightly more than the second.
I’m just finishing up my second pot now; there’s definitely a difference in flavours although there are similarities too. Most of the milky flavour has faded, though it’s still there as a supporting note, and the citrus flavour now reads to me as decidedly more lemony and is present in the body of the sip and not just the aftertaste. The floral note has become a little harsher, and is the first thing I’m noticing as I sip. It’s a little too strong for me. I’m also getting some camphor notes, which I didn’t notice in the first pot. Not sure I’m loving them.
Overall, I think this is a pretty good tea – though I chose not to continuing steeping after the second infusion because I felt the direction the flavours were heading was not one I would have been able to speak too favorably about. In particular, I like the milky/creamy flavour and the way the lemon/citrus intertwined with it.
Thank you Nannuoshan for the sample!
Flavors: Camphor, Citrusy, Cream, Floral, Lemon, Milk
Additional notes: I tried the remainder of my sample with a hotter temperature as Nannuoshan suggested in my last review. I cringingly poured the water over the leaves only a mere seven minutes after boiling the water. I’ve never steeped a white tea hotter. The taste is just fine, but still isn’t my favorite white tea. Though there wasn’t a noticeable difference in flavor from the last time I steeped these leaves, it’s a real eye opener that white tea doesn’t seem to become bitter. If anything, it will be fun rediscovering some favorite white teas in my collection with a hotter temperature.
Steep #1 // 3 grams // 12 ounce mug 2/3 full // 7 minutes after boiling // 2-3 minute steep
Steep #2 // 10 minutes after boiling // 2-3 min
Since I tried the Yin Zhen first, I have some frame of reference. The dry leaves are much longer and spindly. As Tealizzy put it, they look like a cross between a silver needle and a golden needle Yunnan. They have a mild, perfume-like scent.
First steep: 2min
Second steep: 2min 30sec
Third steep: 3min 15sec
The liquid is very, very pale and clear. It’s a creamy shade of yellow. The scent is floral with strong notes of oakmoss and spice that sets the back of my throat tingling before I’ve even taken a sip. Evergreen is the first flavor to hit my tongue. It’s very much like the camphor you’ll find in a sheng puerh. The spice gives my tongue a pleasant tingling sensation as the taste melds into a long, sweet creaminess. Immediately following is a flavor that to me is distinctly Yunnan. It’s a thick, syrupy, caramel pudding flavor that seems to stretch on forever. As the tea cools I catch hints of cut wood—pine, maybe—beneath the creaminess. The wood-like flavor grows a bit stronger in the second steep. It leaves a fresh, almost minty feeling in my mouth. Long creamy finish is again present and accented with a juicy fruit flavor that I can’t identify. The final steep features thick, dairy notes at the forefront with earth, evergreen and wood underneath. It’s a very tasty tea! Thanks to nannuoshan for giving me the opportunity to sample this one.
Flavors: Camphor, Caramel, Cream, Floral, Fruity, Milk, Pine, Spices, Wood
Thanks so much to nannuoshan for all the samples! This is my last one and I can honestly say that all of them were of excellent quality and delicious. I will be picking up some tea in the future.
The dry leaf of this tea looks like a silver needle crossed with a golden needle yunnan black. It is sea foam green color and smells fresh, with some potato and mint notes.
I followed the recommended gong fu parameters, but was able to enjoy a couple more infusions than were listed. The liquor is like a creamy yellow/taupe color, but clear and lightly viscous. The first sip tastes sweet with a juicy texture. There are definite potato notes and a delicious grilled taste with maybe some sweet pipe tobacco. This is amazing! It’s like velvet in my mouth.
Wow, this tea is so different than other white teas. Usually, white tea has hay or cucumber notes, but the grilled taste in this one is just fabulous! The uniqueness of this one makes it stand out to me, and it has definitely earned a place on my “buy” list.
Pics of the leaf and liquor:
So I am not generally a white/green/oolong tea fan. Whites in particular tend to taste like sweet water to me. I opted to brew this one western brew for about 3 mins. The taste here reminds me a little of wild monk from mandala but not quite. there’s a sweetness here that is really tasty and something that could almost be smoke..but that isn’t. I am a fan! I might even consider picking more of this up in the future…which says a lot for a white tea :)