The origins of our Meng Ding Gan Lu Tea
Although not as widely known as some other white teas, this Chinese loose-leaf is rated as one of the finest teas of China with a smooth mouthfeel, delicate floral tones and complex fruity finish.
Our single-origin No. 77 Meng Ding comes from Tea Master Chen's ancient tea garden, situated amid the steep and rocky peaks of the misty Meng mountain in Meng Ding Shan, Sichuan Province, Central China. The elevation of the garden is between 800 - 1000m above sea level and, with a lesser amount of sun that is gently diffused through the mist, cooler weather and a high altitude allow the buds to grow steadily with little stress.
For Tea Master Chen, the art of tea making has been handed down through generations, and she has a wealth of knowledge that she shares amongst her family, who all work on the well-established tea bushes within the plantation.
For Master Chen's Gan Lu, the leaves are skillfully plucked by hand from the tea bushes only during the morning of early Spring (March). The result is a collection of the first young tender tea buds of the year, which have a beautiful green-yellow appearance, coated by white down.
Following the harvest, the Chen family gently hand-rolls each leaf before scenting the tea leaves with fragrant Orchid flowers and finally leaving the tea naturally dry.
The history of this special tea
Originating from the mountainous region of Meng Mountain, or Meng Ding, in Sichuan Province, China, this loose leaf tea has a history that dates as far back as 2000 years. Legend has it that Master Wu Lizhe planted and nurtured seven Traditional Sichuan cultivar tea bushes following his Tao beliefs instead of picking the leaves from the exceptionally rare wild tea bushes.
Following Master Wu Lizhe's death, Gan Lu tea became commonly known as Tea of The Immortals. Subsequently, during the Tang dynasty and Qing dynasty, Buddist monks took cuttings from the highly prized ceremonial tea to establish plants at each of the monasteries situated on the five peaks of the Meng mountain and gift to the emperor (Emperor Xiaozong) its tea leaves.