Yellow tea is a very rare and spacial chinese tea. It is processed similar to green tea, however the appearance of the leaves as well as the infusion is yellow. The objective in manufacturing yellow tea is to remove the grassy flavor typical for green teas. The drying phase is longer and the leaves are allowed to wither until yellow.
Historically yellow teas were known as the teas given as gifts and tax payment to the Chinese Emperor by peasants, thus they were the best quality teas. The name of the tea stems from yellow being the royal color, but those teas have little to do with what we know as yellow tea today, except for their quality.
The art of yellow tea is becoming extinct due to it’s complicated and time-consuming making process. The leaves are usually quickly friend in small quantities, then wrapped in cow skin paper and left to dry for a few hours. This process is repeated over a period of a few days until the tea is finished and has reached the appropriate color and flavor. It is produced in small volumes, even smaller then the exclusive white teas. However, thanks to the internet it’s not that hard to get ahold of them. The three most popular yellow teas are Meng Ding Huang Ya (yellow bud from Sichuan province), Jun Shan Yin Zhen (yellow silver needle from Hunan province) and Huo Shan Huang Ya (yellow bud from Anhui province).
When it comes to placing yellow tea on a scale of exclusiveness it’s usually between white and green tea. Yellow tea is perfect for those who don’t like the grassy taste of green tea.
Places where you can find yellow tea