Rebeca Yu's Handmade Bai Hao
This sensational tea comes in its original, unaltered, fifty gram package along with an airtight ceramic jar, a special edition label, and steeping instructions—all inside of a lovely gift box.
Emei, Hsinchu lies in the heart of the largest wetland ecology in Taiwan. The low-lying elevations and insect rich summers make for strenuous theaculture. This is the site where Rebeca Yu, a local artist and producer of superlative Bai Hao tea (erstwhile Dongfang Meiren “Eastern Beauty”) makes her living, tending and caring for a healthy ecology of wild and free-seeded tea plants. The rich diversity in the ecosystem allows for the complex interplay that makes Bai Hao possible: the collaboration of plant, insect, and animal kingdoms. When bitten by an indigenous jassid, the tea plant releases a natural, defensive hormone to attract predators of the insect. This hormone smells of honey, white flower and peach skin and is what imparts itself to the finished taste of the tea. If there are too many jassids in the garden the tea will be bitter, too few and the effect is underwhelming. Each batch from Ms. Yu’s garden is hand-plucked, hand-rolled and finished only by sight, touch, and smell. She dedicates a portion of her finished tea to market, the rest to age and vintage. In her own words, “I hope my tea will touch your heart."