Bai Ji Guan

Tea type
Oolong Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
Grain, Grass, Green Apple, Hay, Herbs, Honey, Mineral, Orange, Raisins, Roast nuts, Sage, Vegetal, Apple, Green, Bell Pepper, Broth, Almond, Floral, Nuts, Salt, Smooth
Sold in
Loose Leaf
Caffeine
Not available
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by Jim Marks
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 5 g 5 oz / 159 ml

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10 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Another 5g sample. Spring 2017 harvest. This is only the second bai ji guan yancha I’ve tried, and is, if I can recall, much different than the other one which was twice light-roasted. I got 10...” Read full tasting note
    92
  • “Sooo excited to try my first bai ji guan! ever since I saw that Meileaf video about it I haven’t stopped wanting it so yay!!!!! :D The dry leaf looks just like in the pic, and smells pretty much...” Read full tasting note
  • “Where to begin with this one? Bai Ji Guan is a classic Wuyi oolong cultivar. Along with Da Hong Pao, Tie Luohan, and Shui Jin Gui, it is one of the Four Famous Bushes. Of the four, it is often...” Read full tasting note
    94
  • “Pleasant. Perhaps a bit too far toward the green end of the spectrum for my tastes. But I love the flavor of golden raisins and apple in this. It reminds me of certain Darjeelings, yet more robust...” Read full tasting note
    70

From Verdant Tea

Bai Ji Guan is a rare and incredibly unique varietal in Wuyi. The Li Family cultivates a small amount of Bai Ji Guan on their mountainside plot facing the Longchuan Gorge. This extremely light, beautiful, almost Dancong-like tea is full of the mineral notes that define Wuyi. It is thick and packed with unique vegetal undertones and florals. The Li Family’s careful cultivation and roasting means gorgeous giant light-colored leaves and a bright crisp brew.

About Verdant Tea View company

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10 Tasting Notes

92
409 tasting notes

Another 5g sample. Spring 2017 harvest. This is only the second bai ji guan yancha I’ve tried, and is, if I can recall, much different than the other one which was twice light-roasted.

I got 10 steeps with 5g of leaf in my 100mL clay gaiwan. Boiling water and a short rinse.

The dry and rinsed leaf presented as very fragrant with an aroma of musty hay, orange blossom, yeast, cream, sweet pea floral, and elderflower.

Immediately with the first steep of 5 seconds, the pure golden liquor was swimming in taste. Sweet pea floral and vegetal, elderflower, hay, buttered yeast roll and mineral. The liquor was fragrant, brothy and tart with an already strong, lingering sweetness. As the session progressed, the flavors amplified. More elderflower sweet-tart came forward turning into mineral lemon water. Something reminded me of vanilla sugared egg yolks and a hint of lightly drying salted almond butter. The aftertaste was strongly floral and sweet, sometimes like honey, sometimes like white sugar. I went to the post office and grocery mid-session and was gone for an hour, all the while enjoying the persistent aftertaste. Toward the end, a pleasant brassiness and citrus zest showed up in the mouth with the brothiness transforming into a thickness. One thing I noted was if allowed to cool, the butteriness and some astringency became prominent. I was reminded of movie theater popcorn butter flavoring. I would recommend a strainer for this tea since it seems some of the delicate leaf disintegrates with boiling water.

Overall, I’m really digging this tea. It has such a complex and deep profile and strength in aroma and taste while remaining bright. Too sweet of an aftertaste for me to be a daily drinker but I’d like to keep some on hand.

Preparation
Boiling 5 g 3 OZ / 100 ML

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141 tasting notes

Sooo excited to try my first bai ji guan! ever since I saw that Meileaf video about it I haven’t stopped wanting it so yay!!!!! :D

The dry leaf looks just like in the pic, and smells pretty much like a roasty green tea

in my warm gaiwan it smells .. sorta like iced tea powder, grass, honey,

Oh my god I could just sit here sniffing this wet leaf for hours, orange/peanuts, with some greens, I’m so happy.

First steep: bit of a thin body, uh some gummy taste, super smooth, a nice tingle in the mouth, grass, it’s so fruity, I love this.
the second steep brings out more orange, and a sort of vague nuttiness in the aftertaste
Third steep was a little bland if im honest
the fourth actually tastes like the later part of a session of some kind of green tea, the familiar dryness on the tongue. If you fed me that blind I would’ve thought it was green tea.
It’s very dry, very green tea-ey. I’m pretty sure the typical verdant recommended 98C/208F is too high. I’m trying 95 for the next.. now it just feel too thin, lowered it further, even worse, and I just.. I don’t know what to do anymore. I shoulda just kept smelling the wet leaf after the rinse. The first steep was good. The rest was kinda eh. :(

eastkyteaguy

Just out of curiosity how much leaf were you using and how long were you steeping? I had misgivings about the temperature myself, but opted to go with it and see what happened. I got eight really good steeps out of it using the method I settled on. The other steeps were okay, but kind of typical for late session steeps.

Mackie

I had a 5g sample in my new Gaiwan that’s apparently 5-6 oz, which is obviously too much water to leaf so I wasn’t filling it all the way, maybe halfway. And I’m not 100% sure about my steep length but I never did anything atypical. I mean I’d be willing to retry in a much smaller brewing vessel, (especially after reading your review) but I used my whole sample :/

eastkyteaguy

I was just asking because I had a similar issue using a slightly larger vessel and brewing at 208 F. I tried the same temperature in a smaller vessel and got much different results. I still think one could safely reduce the water temperature a bit though. I almost feel like if one insists on using the recommended water temperature, then flash steeps may be the way to go. As a side note, I hope this tea continues to be regularly offered. I want to play around with my brewing methods a bit more and I don’t have much left myself.

eastkyteaguy

Oh, and I forgot to mention that everything I have been reading on Bai Ji Guan suggests that it tolerates a wide ranging of water temperatures and steep times. If that’s true, it may just come down to the amount of leaf used. I’ve also read that it can be kind of a temperamental tea in the sense that the cultivar is very fussy and sensitive, does not produce tremendous or consistent yields, and the traditional production process has to be very precise in order to keep it from being undrinkable. That’s apparently why it’s so rare and so inconsistent from year to year.

Mackie

Damn. I wish I knew that going in, I have a ~60ml Gaiwan on its way right now that I could’ve waited for. I may have to get another sample in my next verdant order

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94
801 tasting notes

Where to begin with this one? Bai Ji Guan is a classic Wuyi oolong cultivar. Along with Da Hong Pao, Tie Luohan, and Shui Jin Gui, it is one of the Four Famous Bushes. Of the four, it is often believed to be the least popular, at least in the West. Being a big fan of Wuyi oolongs, I jumped at the opportunity to try this one since I had never been able to try this cultivar before.

I prepared this tea gongfu style. After a quick rinse, I steeped 6 grams of loose tea leaves in 4 ounces of 208 F water for 5 seconds. I followed this initial infusion up with 12 additional infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 8 seconds, 11 seconds, 15 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, and 3 minutes.

Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves gave off a vegetal scent somewhat reminiscent of a Japanese green tea. Verdant describes it as a matcha-like aroma, and I can see that being at least somewhat accurate. I also picked up the same aromas of hay, sweetgrass, and watercress noted by the folks at Verdant, as well as a slightly herbal scent. After the rinse, the intense vegetal aromas were still present, though I also noted the emergence of subtle roasted nut and mineral aromas. The first infusion produced a notably more balanced aroma that also displayed a hint of citrus. In the mouth, the vegetal notes dominated the entry. The expected touches of hay, sweetgrass, and watercress were there, though there was also something that reminded me a little of radish. Once the vegetal notes calmed, I immediately picked up notes of basil, sage, roasted nuts, and minerals. Subsequent infusions saw the vegetal character mellow, as fruitier qualities began to emerge. Aromas and flavors of honey, mandarin orange, green apple, nectarine, golden raisin, and lime zest presented themselves, creating an interesting contrast with the tea’s more vegetal and savory qualities. Later infusions saw the vegetal character return, though mostly to frame the now suddenly more pronounced aromas and flavors of minerals, sage, roasted nuts, and basil.

Now that I have had some time to process this, I am left with the impression of a busy, complex tea with surprising depth. I found the integration of aromas and flavors to be masterful. Compared to some of the other Wuyi oolongs I have consumed, this almost came across as a hybrid of a green tea and a traditional oolong. Indeed, I found it to display some of the best characteristics of both. Though this is the first Bai Ji Guan I have tried and I have no idea how this one compares to some of the others on the market, I feel that if I was able to enjoy this one as much as I did, then this cultivar and I are going to get along famously. I think I could confidently recommend this tea to those who are fans of both oolongs and green teas and who wouldn’t mind the idea of trying something a little different.

Flavors: Grain, Grass, Green Apple, Hay, Herbs, Honey, Mineral, Orange, Raisins, Roast nuts, Sage, Vegetal

Preparation
Boiling 6 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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70
39 tasting notes

Pleasant. Perhaps a bit too far toward the green end of the spectrum for my tastes. But I love the flavor of golden raisins and apple in this. It reminds me of certain Darjeelings, yet more robust and less floral. Can’t say I’d want to drink it all that often, but it’s nice.

Flavors: Apple, Grain, Green, Raisins

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 15 sec 4 g 6 OZ / 180 ML

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40 tasting notes

I’m not sure if I enjoy this tea. It is brothy, smooth and piquant, maybe roasted red bell pepper? Green bell pepper? It is full-flavored and there are no objectionable floavors. I think I just might not like the peppery nature of it. An interesting experience.

Flavors: Bell Pepper, Broth

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1099 tasting notes

Finally got to try my first white cockscomb tea! It’s very, very, very nutty. It reminds me of almond butter and cashew milk…I’m getting a salty aftertaste too. As for the florals, it’s like eating flowers and salted peanuts together, but more blended in the nuttier profiles I’m getting.

Verdant’s description is kinda odd to me, but I see it. I do get the vanilla and in some ways jasmine, but again, it’s more floral in texture than in aroma or flavor for me. Cockscomb is probably the floral I’m tasting. Salted nuts is what I get continually, however. Maybe aloeswood describes the weird incense taste that I do partially detect… Overall savory for me with floral following. More floral in the later steeps.

Brewing Parameters: 3 ounces, 185 F, 20 sec, 45 sec, 1 min, 1 min 45, 2 min 30, and five minutes.

So glad to try it, but I’m not sure if I would get a lot of this tea. Maybe a little bit to savor. Rasseru, this is definitely up your alley.

Flavors: Almond, Floral, Nuts, Salt

Rasseru

Not sure ive ever had a salted peanut tea yet. Ive stuck it on my wants list, not sure if there is anything else from verdant I would like to order

Daylon R Thomas

Verdant IS expensive. The Laoshan Roasted Oolong is interesting and carob like. Their Qilan is not bad either-it’s actually kinda jasmine tasting. But very mildly, and I can’t remember which one it specifically was. I do know it was the less expensive one.

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90
99 tasting notes

Musty first steep, but promising. A bit salty? Maybe I’m just making that up. Sister had to come talk to me, so it went way too long. lol

Shorter second steep… that’s not really how it works but… yeah. These are feisty little tea leaves. It’s a little bit minerally, but it’s mostly smooth with a hint of floral.

Insert many steeps later… still going strong. I love how light this is. Leaves my tongue tingling. Yumyumyummers!

Flavors: Floral, Salt, Smooth

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec 4 g 5 OZ / 147 ML
Liquid Proust

I brew this at 90c for 45 seconds and it’s wonderful.

Casey

I realized when the tea leaves were completely spent that I’d been using some pretty toasty water. Compliments to the tea that it didn’t taste bitter at all. ;P

Apparently I’m one of those people who can’t multi-task while drinking tea—it’s kind of insult to the tea, anyway. :)

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1110 tasting notes

Going to be 100% honest about this: The first sip, I knew that this was something different.
Is that different a good or bad thing? Easily said, it’s a wonderful thing.

This tea brews up something I can only explained by story since I’m tea drunk from some sheng
Once upon a time Mr. Guan went over to a new village to pick up some rice from a friend who grows it. While in that village he met a lady known as lady Wuyi and she was a very fine lady who liked her flower garden that was prized, but her father was a very stern man and hard to get through as he knew what was ‘best’ for her. This story goes on and on to explain how love conquered and Mr. Guan and lady Wuyi became Mr & Mrs GuanWuyi, but that isn’t the importance. Their child came into the world and somehow showed promise to not only have traits of their parents, but also grandparents as they were there daily.

What does all this mean? I’m tea drunk.

Anyways, this is one lovely tea that I will buy again when I run out. I normally don’t buy tea again unless I find that it has something great to offer and this does. To me it’s like a weak dong ding with flower notes that a tieguanyin would carry. I’m still wrapping my mind around this being a wuyi because it’s very floral. My first few steeps had a nice texture to the liquid with a buttery finish to the floral taste which was pretty interesting. The best part about this is that I only used 3g for a session and it carried some nice depth to it.

Rasseru

That sounds well up my street

Daylon R Thomas

One that I wondered about yet again.

Lion

Nice story. Have you heard the actual legend beyond Bai Ji Guan (White Cockscomb)? It’s my favorite tea legend and a bit of a tearjerker.

Lion

*I meant behind, not beyond. Whoops. We’re both tea drunk.

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368 tasting notes

Still working my way through November’s TotM leaves (they come near the end of the month now, rather than mid-month, so it “feels” behind at the moment until I get used to this schedule).

I remember when this was one of the “reserve” release teas about half a year ago and I’m excited to see this is now part of Verdant’s day to day offerings.

This is a delightfully light and complex wuyi. There’s very little roast here and yet it doesn’t drift all the way into tieguanyin-like floweriness. There’s some bright floral notes, but it is the wet stone which still dominates.

There is a beautiful smooth thickness and a long finish which ends in a kind of almond spiciness rather than the flowers which is very pleasant.

The wet leaf and cup aroma are very powerful for an oolong tea.

Flavors: Almond, Floral, Mineral

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 15 sec 7 g 8 OZ / 250 ML

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