Bai Mu Dan also called White Peony is a traditional Chinese white tea, produced in Fujian Province. It is a historical famous tea in Fujian Province.
Bai means “White” and Mu Dan means “Peony”. The brewed tea leaves floating in the water looks like Peony blooming, so it is called Bai Mu Dan.
1. Legend of Bai Mu Dan
According to a legend, during the Western Han Dynasty (202 BC-8 AD), there was an official called Mao Yi, who was honest and upright. Because he can’t get used to the corrupt officials, he abandoned his office and went back to the countryside with his mother.
When they arrived at a mountain, they suddenly smelt a strong fragrance, so they asked an old man with a white hair and silver beard hanging over his chest.
The old man pointed to eighteen white peonies at the lotus pond and said the fragrance came from it. When the mother and son saw that like a fairyland, they decided to build a temple and roads to protect the lotus pond and peonies.
One day, his mother fell ill because of her old age and tiredness. He was looking for medicine everywhere and very anxious and tired. When he fell down on the road and fell asleep, he met the old man in his dream. The old man told him tea can treat his mother.
When he got home, surprisingly, his mother had the same dream. Suddenly, the eighteen peonies turned into eighteen tea trees, and the trees were full of green buds and leaves. He picked the buds and leaves and made them into tea. After drinking it, his mother’s illness was gone. Later, they named this kind of tea “Bai Mu Dan” (White Peony).
2. History of Bai Mu Dan
Before 1922, Bai Mu Dan was first created in Jianyang District in the northern part of Fujian Province. At that time, it was mainly exported to Southeast Asia.
After 1922, Zhenghe County of Fujian Province also began to produce Bai Mu Dan and became the main producing area of Bai Mu Dan.
Up to now, there are more than five producing areas of Bai Mu Dan in Fujian Province.
3. Characteristics of Bai Mu Dan
Bai Mu Dan is mainly picked in March, and the picking time is only about 15-20 days. so the output of Bai Mu Dan is relatively low and its price is relatively high.
Bai Mu Dan is made from one bud with one leaf or with two leaves. Among all the Chinese white teas, the quality of Bai Mu Dan is second only to that of Bai Hao Yin Zhen, because Bai Hao Yin Zhen is made from 100% of buds.
Although the quality of Bai Mu Dan is not the best, its aroma is the strongest among them and smells like flower fragrance.
The dried Bai Mu Dan tea leaves are covered with a layer of white fluffs, so the color of it is green covered white.
After brewing, the tea leaves slowly unfold in the water, like the white peony gently swinging in the water. The color of the tea soup is apricot or orange-yellow; the taste of it is fresh, light, and aftertaste.
When tasting Bai Mu Dan tea, it is recommended that it’s better not to add sugar or milk. Otherwise, it will destroy the fresh and natural taste of Bai Mu Dan tea.
According to the material, technology, and production area of Bai Mu Dan, there are about 20 kinds of fragrances of it.
Here are common kinds of aromas of Bai Mu Dan:
- Fruit fragrance
- Grass fragrance
- Herbal fragrance
- Orchid fragrance
- Jujube fragrance
- Baking fragrance
- Gardenia fragrance
- Osmanthus fragrance
Besides, according to its quality, Bai Mu Dan tea can be classified into four grades. The higher the grade, the better the shape, fragrance, and taste.
4. Health benefits of Bai Mu Dan
Bai Mu Dan tea has a high content of flavonoids, which has a strong antioxidant effect. One cup of Bai Mu Dan tea has the same effect as 12 cups of orange juice.
Bai Mu Dan tea is more effective than green tea in sterilization, anti-virus, and anti-inflammatory.
Here are the main benefits of Bai Mu Dan:
- Eye protection
- Protecting the liver
- Relieving summer heat
- Clearing heat and detoxifying
- Promoting blood sugar balance
- Anti-inflammation and sterilization