Don't call this Gunpowder Tea!
This is a fascinating Zhu Cha (Pear shaped tea) which is made in a more remote part of Anhui Province. It may look similar to Gunpowder Green tea, with it's muted colours and rolled shape, but this is a totally different tasting tea.
While most Gunpowder Greens are mass produced in Zhejiang and have a rough and smoky taste, this tea is floral, fruity, bright and elegant with absolutely NO smokiness. Yongxi Huo Qing has been made in Jing County since the Ming Dynasty so it has centuries of history.
Yongxi Huo Qing (Jade Fire) is processed slowly over about 12 hours with charcoal-fired woks at low temperatures. This contributes to the darker colour but don't let that fool you. As the pearls open you can see the quality of these leaves - fabulous lime green, tender pickings with a but and two leaves. The taste is refreshing, sweet and uplifting, full of pomelo and sweet biscuits.