Malawi Bvumbwe Peony White Tea

Tea type
White Tea
White Tea Leaves
Autumn Leaf Pile, Cut Grass, Dry Grass, Floral, Peach, Rose, Sweet, Tea, Fruit Punch, Pear, Hay, Apricot, Fruity, Malt, White Wine
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Loose Leaf
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Edit tea info Last updated by eastkyteaguy
Average preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 30 sec 4 g 10 oz / 286 ml

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From What-Cha

A huge leaf tea with a smooth and sweet honeyed taste with apricot notes. Another great white tea from Satemwa which makes a great ‘everyday’ white tea.

Sourced direct from Satemwa Tea Estate in Malawi who are dedicated to pushing the boundaries of great tea production while caring for the local environment, providing their employees a fair wage and contributing to the local community.

Tasting Notes:
- Smooth texture
- No astringency or bitterness
- Sweet honeyed taste with apricot tones

Origin: Satemwa Tea Estate, Malawi, Africa

About What-Cha View company

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7 Tasting Notes

38 tasting notes

Malawi is a country I associate with the score upon score of colorful fish that fill up its eponymous rift lake. Lake Malawi is a precious jewel to those studying vertebrate evolution— those fish are geologically young species, and relatively closely related, yet incredibly diverse in form and favor, and still radiating at a rapid clip. It was this image of Malawi— Malawi, place of adaption— that I sat down to make this tea.

Firstly, if you taste with your eyes, you’ll love this one. Verdigris, ocher, and sable splay across big, furling things. The leaves look great in the bag and even more enticing in the pot.
One of the reasons I picked this tea out was those striking leaves. The other is that I have not had tea grown in Africa before and think it’s interesting to compare teas grown in the plant’s native range to those outside of it. This is certainly unlike any white tea produced in China; it has changed in its new country (perhaps not surprising, given that African growers have had since the late 1800s to apply artificial selection to their bushes). It shares with its kin a sweet and floral, almost rosy nose, but on the tongue is another animal. It is almost bracing, with a sturdy heart of tea and velvety peach skin, and a long finish that plays out on the palate in sequence. First comes grass and autumn leaves— it reminds me of how the air smells after mowing the lawn for the last few times— then peach resurfaces, skinned this time, and it’s an unusual peach in that it’s not accompanied by nectar-sweetness. It’s an assertive, just-picked peach, still firm and almost sour. Then comes grass, fresh at first, which dries and dies along with the flavor. For this transformation alone it is worth drinking. I grabbed this expecting something simple and easy to follow along while I worked on a drawing, but wound up stopping briefly just to take note of that finish.

I quite enjoyed this taste of Malawi and will likely double down my efforts to try more African tea as a result.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Cut Grass, Dry Grass, Floral, Peach, Rose, Sweet, Tea

185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 0 sec 5 g 16 OZ / 473 ML

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7 tasting notes

Quite a surprising tea! I didn’t expect anything in particular since I haven’t got an extensive experience of white tea and it has been a rocky journey. The colourful and widespread dry leaves tingled my nose with fruity hints of a backgarden, but I wasn’t fond of their overripe – flirting with moulden – character when steeped. Happily, the infusion smelled of cooked pear (almost a pie!) and yielded a delightfum note of mirabel on the tongue. With an ever so slight bitterness that highlights its sweet beginnings, this tea stimulates the entire mouth and ends in a long and fresh aftertaste. A sweet note of each remains once cooled.
Although quite pleasing, this is the kind of aromas that I would expect from an oolong, whereas I go for white when I need something light and flowery ; I know this sounds narrow-minded, but my point is that I’m not sure when I would drink this crossover tea.

Flavors: Fruit Punch, Peach, Pear

195 °F / 90 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 7 OZ / 200 ML

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1719 tasting notes

This is just such a neat tea. Maybe the largest leaf of any I have ever seen. It tastes of apricot and peonies in a mountain stream. In later steeps add in plums. It is smooth and mellow with just a hint of bite trying to peek through. To me it is almost like something from Nepal instead of Africa. It is a white tea, so it is on the subtle end. This is the first tea I have brewed in two weeks that I felt like paying attention to detail. Hopefully I am on the road to well. Tea – how I have missed you.

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921 tasting notes

I am so nervous! I finally grew a pair (and admitted that it was tolerably complete) and entered my Scourge army into the monthly painting contest on the Dropzone Forums. I have been told numerous times that my army is awesome, and I am very pleased with how it came out, but I will be going against professionals and seasoned painter, this is my first army (well I did finish them, and decided I wanted a different scheme so I stripped them and started over, so second?) I feel like it is such a glaring pile of newb mistakes. But on the other hand I am one of those people that obsesses over details and never really calls a project complete….so maybe I should stop worrying? Wish me luck! This is my first time putting my painting really ‘out there’ so it is a little terrifying.

Ok, I have managed to calm myself down enough to write a blog about tea! A tea that looks like a pile of mulch! What-Cha’s Malawi Bvumbwe Peony White Tea is a tea that if I was not more knowledgeable, I would think I am being trolled. I have seen some gloriously fluffy Bai Mu Dan, but this tea takes the cake with its massive whole leaves, and instead of being the usual shades of green these leaves are brown and dried, like autumn leaves. The Satemwa Tea Estate in Malawi never ceases to amaze me with its unusual teas (remember the Antler tea?) So, the aroma of these leaves is anything but dry and smell-less (as some giant dried autumn looking leaves can be) they are in fact leafy and a bit loamy smelling, but the real show stopper is the honey drizzled peach sweetness and touch of fresh growing vegetation and hay. This tea reminds me of the edge of summer into fall, it has that warmth of summer with the crispy leafiness of fall.

Leaves this size do not fit in my normal gaiwan, so I used my green gaiwan-ish thing. Technically this thing is a gaiwan, but it also is called a travel gaiwan or easy gaiwan, I thought that its built in strainer in the lid and short-wide profile would make for a good pseudo houhin until I can get a real one (or a shiboridashi, a girl can dream) they fit perfectly inside the wide gaiwan. When they are wet they become beautifully mottled colored, and oooh the aroma is nice. Notes of sun warmed hay, scuppernongs, and apricots, so delightfully sweet and fruity! The liquid is a veritable summer picnic of fruit, with melon, apricot, peaches, honey, and a distinct note of sun warmed alfalfa and grass.

The first steep tastes like a field and fruit, it is sweet and full of sun drenched life, warm wildflowers, alfalfa (like the grass not the salad sprouts) with a finish of dried apricots and melon. This tea is delightfully sweet and has a cooling effect, which would make this an excellent summer tea me thinks. Even though it has a cooling effect, it also has a very relaxing lazy feel to it, like I want to sip it while lounging under a shady tree on a warm day.

Yes, I definitely went for a second steep, and this one I decided to give it a long steep, I steeped it for a whopping ten minutes. I really like pushing the boundaries with white tea because I have found that it takes a lot to screw up the taste, and usually what you get is something bland rather than bitter. The aroma of the second steep is really muscatel and has a tiny hint of honey and hay. Steeping it really long brings out the muscatel notes, along with rich honey and apricots, oh man it is so rich and sweet, almost like a dessert! This might be one of my new favorite White Peony teas (why is it that almost all my favorite White Teas come from Africa now?) it is just so rich and sweet, plus the leaves are so fun!

For blog, photos (and a link to my Scourge album):

195 °F / 90 °C 2 min, 45 sec
Maddy Barone

Good luck! It’s always hard to put your creativity out there. I hope you do great!


Thank you :D

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3708 tasting notes

Another late-night tea from What-Cha. I’ve been interested in their Malawi teas since I found them on the website. However, this was the only one that was inexpensive enough to add to my order (I was sticking to teas that were $5 per 25g or under). The leaves of this tea are huge – they’re full leaves and they’re flattened. Color is a warm red/brown with some darker leaves. Dry scent is hay and apricot.

The steeped tea has a very mild aroma, but I can pick up on hay and some stonefruit. This is definitely a very mellow tea (maybe next time I’ll use my usual white tea temperature of 185 degrees). The flavor is very sweet with strong hay notes. I can also taste autumn leaves which makes me think of oxidized oolongs. The package mentions a “gentle apricot taste”, but I don’t seem to be picking up on that. Overall, this has a simple but nice flavor, especially for an evening tea.

Flavors: Autumn Leaf Pile, Hay, Sweet

175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 8 OZ / 236 ML

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894 tasting notes

The leaves of this tea are huge and fluffy. Two leaves and a bud, not twisted or rolled to make them more compact. The leaves are a mixture of medium brown and green colours, and smell faintly malty.

The directions say to use 3-4 teaspoons per cup, but good luck measuring this tea with a teaspoon. I pulled 3g of tea out of the bag with my fingers, and put it into a 1oz tea cup for weighing. There was a little mountain of tea in that cup, and the leaves were poking up from the top of my medium Finum brew basket.

Steeped the liquor is golden and clear. It smells faintly boozey, like a white wine, but very delicate, with a touch of malt and apricot.

I initially steeped for three minutes but ended up going for four and a half. Hot, there’s not much flavour. It gets better as it cools, with a slight fruity note and a “tea” flavour, all very mild.

All in all, I’m left really wanting more from this. I think perhaps a longer steep is in order – a blog review recommends 7-8 minutes, which I will try next time, since I bought 25g of this.

It’s awesome to be able to try teas from new regions, but this one was a bit of a disappointment.

Flavors: Apricot, Fruity, Malt, White Wine

175 °F / 79 °C 4 min, 30 sec 3 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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