"Gunpowder fans won’t be disappointed in this full green tea revealing a slightly bitter but not unpleasant flavour."
Gunpowder is one of the most famous names in tea, partly due to the story that the name was given by a young English port clerk who thought the tiny rolled green balls were gunpowder. The tea leaves are specially selected for quality, size and style and are then rolled into tight nuggets. Gunpowder tea keeps a lot longer than other green teas and is favoured because of this characteristic.
Gunpowder tea comes from the province of Zhejiang in China and from Taiwan, generally, better gunpowders come from Taiwan. Today in Taiwan the tea bushes flush about 5 times per year from April to December and best leaf is picked from the end of May to mid-August. Tea bushes were first planted in Taiwan about 300 years ago with bushes from Fujian Province, and the main tea growing/production region is concentrated around the northern part of Taiwan near Chi-lung.
Gunpowder is very popular in the Middle East and North Africa, where used blended with mint and large amounts of sugar to make Touareg.
When the tea is made the tiny pellets bobble in the bowl or cup. Boiling water causes them to almost explode in the water as the leaves expand and open up like flowers then sink slowly to the bottom in graceful patterns, which add a dimension of visual pleasure to tea drinking.
This tea produces a reasonably strong dark-green brew with a memorable fragrance and a long lasting finish. Gunpowder is denser than other teas so one or two teaspoons for a teapot is all that is required. If you like green tea then this is a very good example and it really stands apart from all the others we have tried, makes a great gift for a serious green tea lover.
Caffeine Guide: Low
Region: Taipei County
Antioxidant Content: Low
Growing Altitudes: 1500 – 2500 feet above sea level
Appearance: Tiny rolled green balls like gunpowder
Infusion Colour: Tending dark green
Process: Steamed green tea
Taste: Slightly bitter but not unpleasant flavour, long lasting finish
Ingredients: Green tea