OK, now we are starting to get serious, just to show that I really didn’t start a tea blog to talk about basic Asian market finds… not that there’s anything wrong with that though. This particular Bai Hao comes from a “mainstream” company called Numi. The reason you will see this brand crop up every now and then around here is that I have a fairly good source for this loose tea and while it is not top-notch it is very good and fairly priced for the most part. A grocery store chain called Wegmans about 2.5 hours away from me (but near my alma mater so I am in the area every now and then) has a whole section of the store devoted to tea and large canisters of every Numi tea known to man sold by the pound. However, they have no minimum weight requirement so I could try one of everything and still spend less than $20… and I have. Occasionally they even have some super-rare and fresh selections which vary by season.
This Bai Hao stacks up fairly well to much better leaf I’ve had, and is priced around $30-40/lb. (or $16/lb. on Amazon!) I lack the vocabulary to properly describe it, but I’d place it in the realm of a white tea taste but in an oolong. Slight astringency, very very slight citrus and a hint of bitterness, but overall smooth and light to almost slightly medium in body. The leaves ufurl nicely and are fairly large and in tact… however not anywhere near a much higher quality Bai Hao.
It’s a good daily drinker Bai Hao that won’t break the bank, but won’t take you to the moon and back.