Silver Needle from Rare Tea Republic can only be described as perfection. Arriving in an air tight re-sealable pouch, the 1st thing I noticed was the label. Odd, I know, but, how many times have you seen the date the leaves were plucked, and hand written lettering. Ok, so, I’m a bit impressed, but, the real treat came when I opened the bag.
Light, mellow and inviting, the aroma that this tea has puts you in the mind of a wind swept field. Also too, Rare Tea Republic does not use commercially grown teas. All the tea that is used, is grown on small plantations and is all hand processed. To say that this is a top quality tea is an understatement. The leaves themselves are tippy, bright silvery white and feel as soft as rabbit fur. I know that “downy” is the word, but, it just doesn’t do this tea justice. Whole leaves showcase the beauty of this tea grown in Bihar.
The liquor brews to a pale yellow and displays the “dance of the tea” wonderfully. Bright and floral, with a light fruit finish that lingers enhances and afternoon tea, of light brunch. In fact, I would recommend using it in place of champagne over brunch, especially if it is a light and “less than adult” affair. As a palate cleanser, this is a perfect drop. Inhale the light floral and mellow apricot notes, and allow this brew to lighten your soul. This is truly the highest quality white I have EVER had the privilege to sample.
Rare Tea Republic describes this tea as:
Large, downy needles produce a sweet and creamy, full-bodied golden liquor with notes of peach blossom and dried apricot. This is a unique selection from a little-known origin. Plucking date: August 10, 2011.
The Rare Tea Republic offers you fresh teas from the world’s finest tea gardens. Each season they travel to specific tea origins, work directly with artisans of the leaf and choose from hundreds of small lots to procure the teas that best express the character of the region. Just to see the leaves and the packaging, you can tell that Rare Tea Republic uses the utmost care in selecting a perfect cup.
Doke Estate, the producer of Rare Tea Republic’s Silver Needle tea, donates proceeds from every Kilogram of tea purchased to the Indus Foundation, an organization focusing on international education and a brighter future for India. They also share profits with their tea growers and provide funds for the purchase of seeds, solar power and education for the next generation. Using fair trade and Organic Teas make this company not only a philanthropist, but is also doing their part to help the planet.
Ok, I know that I harp allot on the preparation of teas… IE: Green, Pu-ehr… ect. BUT, this one is a MUST when brewing. Boiling water WILL destroy this tea. Rare Tea Republic recommends water at 190 f or 88 c but I found that it tastes better to me at closer to 175°F or 80°C. No sweetener is needed with this lovely stand alone tea, and cream or milk will just waste great tea. Iced, with a few pieces of raw peach or apricot will make this one a summer refresher that people won’t be able to get enough of. Either way, hot or cold, this one is in my humble opinion, the best White Tea I have tasted. Please enjoy.