Weight: 100 g (3.53 oz).
Includes: Tea Leaves, Packing Bag.
Quality Guarantee Period: 24 Months.
Taiping Houkui is a kind of baked green tea and a famous tea in Chinese history. It is unique in color, smell, taste and shape. It can be sub-divided into Houkui, Kuijian, and Jiancha. If you taste it, you'll experience the artistic conception of "great fragrance in the first infusion, strong taste in the second infusion, and lingering fragrance in the third and fourth infusions."
Brewing difficulty: Easy.
Best season to taste: Summer.
Origin: Xinming, Longmen and Sankou of Huangshan in Anhui Province.
Shape: flat and straight with a bud between two leaves, the leaves are stretching as orchids, wearing Pekoe all over the body. Veins are green with hidden red, commonly known as "red threads."
Liquid: green crystal.
Aroma: just as orchid.
Taste: sweet and cool.
Brewed tea leaves: shoots are stretching into flowers, bright, green and uniform.
Recognizing: Taiping Houkui is very large, two leaves with one bud, and the leaves is up to 5 to 7 cm. After brewing, fat shoots swell into flowers, like budding white orchids. The color is dark green. Tea leaves look more beautiful when they are viewed in the sun, definitely not yellowish. Taiping Houkui is more durable than other ordinary tea. The lingering fragrance still exists in the third and fourth infusions, with sweet aftertaste and orchid fragrance.
Brewing Method: bottom-putting or middleputting brewing method.
Tea sets: glass.
Water temperature: 80℃-90℃.
Both of Houkui's ends are sharp, unscattered, not warped and not curl
Houkui is described "sharp, un-scattered， non warped, and not curled". After brewing the bud is like a flower, suspendeding or precipitating in the clear bright tea liquid, just like many small monkeys are giggling and flirting.
Harvesting of Taiping Houkui
Taiping Houkui fresh leaves are generally picked only 15 to 20 days between Grain Rain and Beginning of Summer. Usually it happens in sunny or cloudy mornings or afternoons. The picking standard is one bud, three shoots in the early development. It is important to carry out "four pickings" strictly. First, the tea which grows on hills facing south，shrouded with heavy clouds; Second，the tea which grows on thriving tea trees; Third，the tea from sturdy and straight tender branches; and Fourth，the tea leaves corpulent with fuzzy tips.
History of Tai Ping Hou Kui
A very long time ago, there lived in the magnificent mountains of Huang Shan a monkey couple and their baby. One day, the intrepid little monkey went out to explore the surrounding area but, caught in a thick fog, lost his way. Worried, his father set out to find him. Alas, after searching for several days in vain, the old monkey dropped from exhaustion into a ditch close to Taiping County.
An old man who used to gather wild tea in the area came across the monkey's body. Saddened by this gruesome find, he buried the monkey at the foot of the mountain and, to honor him, planted a few tea trees and other flowering plants- As he was leaving the place he heard a voice say, "Sir, I will repay you for what you have done.," The man turned around but saw no one.
The following spring, the man returned to the mountain to harvest the leaves of the tea trees he had planted there and, to his great surprise, saw that the mountain was covered in them. That was when he heard the voice again, "I give you these tea trees so that you may live well by cultivating them." Frightened at first by the strange voice, the man then remembered the monkey he had buried at this very spot, and he understood that it was his spirit he had heard. To commemorate this unexpected gift, he named the hill Hou Gang (“monkey hill”) and the tea Hou Cha ("monkey tea"). And as the tea was of exceptional quality, the name became Hou Kui (kui meaning "the first" or "the best").
On a more historic note, Tai Ping Hou Kui has been cultivated in the region of Taiping (Anhui Province) since the Ming dynasty. Harvested exclusively for emperors under the Qing dynasty, Tai Ping Hou Kui tea was awarded the title "King of Tea" at the 2004 China Tea Exhibition.