What does white tea taste like?

White and yellow teas are among the most subtle.

What does white tea taste like?

Postby nichm » Oct 10th, '10, 21:17

I've never had white tea but I'm looking forward going to go to my local tea store and try a cup sometime next week.

How would you guys (and girls!) describe the taste of white tea though?

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Re: What does white tea taste like?

Postby Kunkali » Oct 10th, '10, 21:26

It really depends on the type and what country it's harvested in....but generally I would say fruity and slightly floral....sometimes green beany but I find that more with silver needles than bai mudan

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Re: What does white tea taste like?

Postby debunix » Oct 10th, '10, 21:27

Floral, fruity, sometimes a little delicately vegetal--that is, like a tender young snow pea pod, maybe. The most interesting even manages a little spiciness in there too, but that's pretty rare.

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Re: What does white tea taste like?

Postby bsteele » Oct 10th, '10, 22:09

It reminds me of green tea... just more white tasting ;)

But yeah, taste like light green tea to me.

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Re: What does white tea taste like?

Postby nichm » Oct 11th, '10, 09:15

Ooo spicy and fruity? I would've never thought that, I kinda had an idea that it tasty light and a bit like vanilla for some reason but never spicy or fruity.

Thanks for sharing guys

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Re: What does white tea taste like?

Postby debunix » Oct 12th, '10, 00:39

nichm wrote:Ooo spicy and fruity?


Bai Mu Dan (or Pai Mu Tan) certainly is peachy; and I've had some silver needle and some Anji white tea that have managed a bit of spicy, sort of a tingle at the taste buds that normally respond to ginger/cloves/pepper--just a hint of it.

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Re: What does white tea taste like?

Postby TwoPynts » Oct 12th, '10, 13:44

I had some Yunnan Silver Needle today that was anything but light and fruity. More spicy and vegetal, though not in a spinachy/seaweed way. More like squash or pumpkin. Very full mouth feel, lots of character.

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Re: What does white tea taste like?

Postby debunix » Oct 12th, '10, 16:30

TwoPynts wrote:I had some Yunnan Silver Needle today that was anything but light and fruity. More spicy and vegetal, though not in a spinachy/seaweed way. More like squash or pumpkin. Very full mouth feel, lots of character.


"White tea" covers a lot of ground, and a lot of different teas with very different characters. But as a class, trying to figure out what their common element of being minimally processed creates, that distinguishes them from green or oolong teas, I think of more delicate flavors.

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Re: What does white tea taste like?

Postby entropyembrace » Oct 13th, '10, 14:55

Yunnan silver needle...if it was made from a large leaf Yunnan varietal I can definitely see having a more robust flavour than is typical :)

Bai Mu Dan and Shou Mei can get quite dark and rich flavours...especially the Shou Mei. I think it´s more the silver needles tends to be very delicate because it´s made entirely from the leaf buds rather than because of the minimal white tea processing.

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Re: What does white tea taste like?

Postby teaisme » Oct 13th, '10, 15:41

the silver needles from jing has a nice eggy touch too, finicky to extract it but when you do its delicious.
but yeah fruity is deff a stand out characteristic of many whites I have tried esp baimudan.

Delicate is not usually what I get because I brew cooler water longer steeps, so it comes out extremely fruity/sweet in your face

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Re: What does white tea taste like?

Postby nichm » Oct 14th, '10, 20:49

Hmm... I still haven't had a cup yet but I'm really looking forward to it now! thanks for the answers.

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Re: What does white tea taste like?

Postby Alex » Oct 15th, '10, 10:03

Most whites like peony and silver needle have a sort of cucumber / melon like freshness. Someone mentioned an almost slight pepper taste which I find in a lot of whites as well. Very pleasant.

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Re: What does white tea taste like?

Postby bagua7 » Oct 15th, '10, 20:52

Silver needles (Fujian variety...haven't tried the ones from other provinces) is an awesome tea and love to get drunk with it. Very pleasant and "nirvanic" feel to it. The flavour I found was sweet but subtle, fresh, fruity melon-like and definitively long lasting.

IMO, what characterises this tea is all the subtleties involved which are many plus that one brew will last you easily over 20 runs.

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Re: What does white tea taste like?

Postby verus » Nov 1st, '10, 21:09

I have two white teas that I drink regularly, a white Darjeeling and a Bai Mu Dan (White Peony). They're both quite "dark" for a white tea, so not like Silver Needles which I have yet to try.

They're quite similar, with fruity tones, the Darjeeling more apricot and the Bai Mu Dan a bit sweeter, almost biscuit-y, with lots of impressions of vanilla and honey . The Bai Mu Dan is definitely very pleasant, almost a "festive" tea, but overall I prefer the Darjeeling because it has more depth and character.

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