Anji Bai Cha is a kind of Chinese green tea, produced in Anji County of Huzhou City, Zhejiang Province. It is a specialty of Anji County and is a national geographical indication product of China.
Anji Bai Cha is also known as Anji white tea. Bai means “white” and Cha means “tea”. Although Anji Bai Cha is called white tea, it is not a real white tea and is just produced from the green-white tea leaves from the special local tea trees.
1. History of Anji Bai Cha
According to historical records, Anji Bai Cha has a history of nearly a thousand years. As early as in the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127), there was a tea book called <Da Guan Cha Lun> recording some records about Anji Bai Cha.
Bai Cha was also introduced in the <The Classic of Tea> written by Lu Yu in the Tang Dynasty (618-907).
In 1930, an Anji tea farmer found dozens of wild Bai Cha trees on the mountains. But at that time, people did not use these wild tea trees to make tea.
Until 1982, during the general survey of agricultural resources in Zhejiang Province, a thousand-year-old tea tree was found on the mountain. Its tender leaves were green-white and then it was bred into a good tea variety. Later, the local tea farmers began to plant and produce Anji Bai Cha.
The formal production history of Anji Bai Cha is not long, but it soon became famous due to its unique style and high quality.
In 2004, Anji Bai Cha became a national geographical indication protection product of China.
On November 15, 2019, Anji Bai Cha was selected into the Chinese Agricultural Brand Directory.
2. Characteristics of Anji Bai Cha
Anji County, the origin of Anji Bai Cha, belongs to subtropical marine monsoon climate, which is characterized by sufficient light, mild climate, abundant rainfall, mild climate and four distinct seasons. It is very suitable for the growth of tea trees.
Anji Bai Cha is made by the processing technology of green tea, so it is a kind of green tea. The reason Anji Bai Cha is called “white tea” is that it is made from the raw materials that are green-white fresh tea leaves.
The tea tree of Anji Bai Cha is a variant tea tree. In spring, the tender buds and leaves are green-white or jade white. In summer, the buds and leaves will become green gradually.
Anji Bai Cha is picked in spring, so its buds and leaves are all green-white and its production time is usually only one month.
Anji Bai Cha has different prices according to its quality and grade, from tens of dollars to hundreds of dollars per 500g.
3. Types of Anji Bai Cha
Anji Bai Cha can be divided into three types according to its shape: Phoenix shape, Dragon shape, and Orchid shape. In addition to different shapes, the three kinds of Anji Bai Cha also have differences in color, fragrance, and taste.
Phoenix shape Anji Bai Cha
It is the most common Anji Bai Cha on the market. The Phoenix shape Anji Bai Cha is usually made from one bud with two leaves, like the tail of the Phoenix, so it is called Phoenix Anji Bai Cha.
Dragon shape Anji Bai Cha
It is made by the processing technology of Longjing tea (Dragon Well tea). Dragon shape Anji Bai Cha is a little white and light green and it is rare. Some local tea farmers may produce it in small quantities.
Orchid shape Anji Bai Cha
It appeared a few years ago and made by a new processing technology. Its shape is like the orchid.
4. Health benefits of Anji Bai Cha
Anji Bai Cha is rich in many nutrients, including 18 kinds of amino acids needed by the human body. Its polyphenols are less than other green tea, but it has a very fresh taste without bitterness.
Theanine in Anji Bai Cha has the effects of enhancing immunity and memory. Besides, Anji Bai Cha has many other pharmacological effects of green tea.
Here are the main benefits of Anji Bai Cha:
- Weight loss
- Inhibiting cardiovascular disease
- Enhancing immunity and memory
- Reducing blood sugar and blood lipid
5. How to brew Anji Bai Cha
- Tea sets: glass cup or porcelain cup.
- The ratio of tea leaves to water: 1:50. 3g of dried Anji Bai Cha need 150ml of water.
- The temperature of the water: 80℃-85℃.