Elder White is a special bud tea made from the ancillary buds of wild tea trees growing in the Western border of Yunnan.
These tea trees (Assamica Dehongensis) can be used to make Yunnan Black and PuErh tea but in late Winter some of the ancillary buds are picked in small quantities. The ancillary or lateral buds are the first shoots of the year which will become stems. This is different to the terminal buds used in most tea production (which will become leaves). These ancillary buds have a unique cone layered appearance and have to be picked sparingly otherwise the tea trees will not grow enough branches.
We have been holding on to our small batch of Ya Bao buds because the flavour of this tea benefits with a little age. Indeed, they will continue to age and change flavour like all good White tea.
The colour of the tea liquor is so bright and light and the flavour is a combination of bright flowers and fruits with a peppery ginger spice. It is great by itself although we sometimes use a couple of the precious buds to add an elderflower aroma to other teas like Greens and Sheng PuErh.