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Chinese Tea

Legend has it that tea was first discovered by the Chinese Emperor Shen Nong in 2737 BCE, when a leaf from a nearby Camellia sinensis plant fell into a pot of water the emperor was boiling. Traditional Chinese tea has been an important part of China's culture and history ever since, and Chinese loose leaf tea can be classified into five major categories: white, green, oolong, black and post-fermented China tea.

USDA Organic Jasmine Pearl organic loose leaf green tea
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This rare offering is produced from carefully selected leaf sets, consisting of buds and tender first-leaf sets. It is then scented with the highest quality jasmine blossoms, which are later painstakingly removed to ensure that the quality of the leaf is represented in the cup.

ZJ91 |
$0.68/cup
loose leaf China black tea
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A rich chocolate aroma and flavor are showcased in this premium China black tea selection from Yunnan province. Toasty hints warm the velvety smooth mouth feel of the dark copper cup. The finish is long and lingering.

ZY100 |
$0.67/cup
Jasmine loose leaf green tea
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This fine Jasmine selection produces an amber gold cup with a rich, full mouth feel. The flavor showcases a perfect balance between the base tea and its meticulous jasmine scenting. Light floral notes are highlighted by a hint of sweetness that lingers into the finish.

ZJ55 |
$0.24/cup
USDA Organic loose leaf organic pu-erh tea
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Downy silver tips adorn the bold, twisted leaves of this organic Sheng Pu-Erh offering. A sweet herbaceous aroma introduces notes of dried apricot and earthy vegetal hints in the pale golden cup. A refreshing astringency lingers in the finish.

ZH10 |
$0.35/cup
loose leaf gunpowder green China tea
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This high-grade Gunpowder tea is rich and full-bodied with a pronounced sweetness. A hint of tobacco complements the herbaceous flavor and lingers into the finish.

This tea is the perfect choice to enjoy with a spoonful of our Tupelo Honey.

ZG30 |
$0.11/cup
China Yunnan loose leaf black tea
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High-grown Yunnan of excellent quality. Sold by some as the best available, this grade is actually the best of the commonly available grades. Brisk flavor without the harshness of lesser Yunnan teas.

ZY40 |
$0.18/cup
China loose leaf Oolong tea
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The loosely rolled leaves of this finest grade of China Tie-Guan-Yin Oolong produce a pale golden cup with a full, buttery mouth feel. A sweet, floral fragrance introduces notes of dried fruit and a hint of honeysuckle in the flavor. The finish lingers with a light toastiness.

ZO88 |
$0.40/cup
loose leaf black tea
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This outstanding Yunnan black tea selection is composed of handcrafted golden tips with a beautiful downy appearance. The russet-amber liquor is fragrant with hints of molasses. Layers of cocoa, spice and earth weave together to create a rich flavor that is complemented by a caramelized sugar sweetness. A whisper of spice lingers in the finish.

ZY09 |
$1.17/cup
loose leaf Chinese Oolong tea
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This classic Chinese Oolong was grown in the Wudong area of the Phoenix Mountains in Guangdong province. “Da Wu Ye,” meaning “big dark leaf,” refers to the elegantly long, dark green leaves of this most prized of Phoenix Oolong offerings. A gentle roasted aroma introduces the light amber liquor. Pronounced stone fruit notes and hints of honey highlight the rich ambrosial character and full mouth feel of this stellar selection. The finish is smooth and lingering.

ZO66 |
$2.35/cup
Loose leaf Tie-Guan-Yin Imperial Oolong tea
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The dry leaves of this top-quality Oolong offering are fragrant and expertly rolled, producing a sparkling gold liquor with a sweet floral aroma. Notes of orchid are complemented by a buttery mouth feel in the silky smooth cup. Hints of honey lend a richness to the lingering finish. This tea is a great choice for multiple steepings.

ZO33 |
$0.87/cup
China Keemun loose leaf black tea
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With its rich flavor profile and smooth mouth feel, this standard grade Keemun represents a great value for a China black tea. Hints of wine and a suggestion of smoke round out the earthy, full-bodied cup.

ZK11 |
$0.17/cup
Loose leaf Magnolia Blossom Oolong tea
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This Guangdong province specialty is a lovely Oolong tea, scented with magnolia flowers. Alternately known as Orchid Oolong, or Yu Lan, this selection is a must try for those who appreciate a fine scented tea. The flavor nuances are unique, but hints of jasmine lend a recognizable character.

ZM65 |
$0.27/cup
Pre-Chingming Loose Leaf Green Tea - Gu Zhang Mao Jian
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Hunan province has an auspicious history of producing superior green teas and this early spring harvest carries on that tradition. Bold, handcrafted leaves, threaded with downy silver tips, steep a pale yellow-jade liquor with a fresh vegetal aroma that hints of melon. This Pre-Chingming cup is silky smooth with gentle vegetal notes complemented by a light toastiness. Sweet hints of sugarcane bloom and linger long into the crisp finish.

ZG110 |
$0.91/cup
loose leaf pi lo chun China green tea
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The most tender buds are picked under carefully controlled conditions in the spring. One of the most prized of China green teas, only a limited amount of this special grade tea is available.

ZG92 |
$0.56/cup
Jasmine loose leaf green tea
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Chung-Hao Jasmine belongs to the same series of China Jasmine tea as Yin-Hao, but is less expensive. Delicate silver tips adorn the well-made leaves, producing a light, refreshing cup redolent with the heady fragrance of jasmine blossoms. A rich sweetness blooms and lingers into the finish.

ZJ41 |
$0.18/cup
USDA Organic China organic loose leaf green tea
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Produced in the mountainous region of Zhejiang province, this distinguished selection represents an especially good value in Lung Ching tea. Hand-processed leaves are fashioned into flat, yellow-green leaf sets, yielding a flavorful cup with a sweet character and buttery smooth mouth feel. The aroma is fragrant with nutty notes and a light floral hint.

ZG60 |
$0.43/cup
loose leaf scented black tea
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Scented with the aromatic lychee fruit, this China black tea has a natural hint of sweetness and a flowery aroma. A new lot.

TP31 |
$0.18/cup
loose leaf pai mu tan white tea
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The name Pai Mu Tan, or Bai Mu Dan, translates to “white peony,” referring to this white tea’s delicately beautiful leaf sets. Fragrant with a sweet toasty aroma, the amber-gold cup is velvety smooth with pronounced honey notes. The finish is clean with gentle hints of flowers.

ZW100 |
$0.30/cup
China loose leaf Pu-Erh tea
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Shou Pu-Erh tea leaves are crafted by hand into medium pearl shapes, which yield a thick, rich cup with an earthy character. The aroma is fragrant with hints of sweet toffee. Cocoa notes lead to a smooth finish, hinting of spice. Each 1.25" pearl will yield approximately 3-4 cups of tea. This selection is perfect for multiple steepings.

ZH05 |
$0.88/cup
loose leaf Pu-Erh tea cake
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With a tea growing history of over 900 years, the Bulang Mountain range of Yunnan province includes some of the most prized Pu-Erh production regions. The aroma reveals a woody/toasty/sweet earthy complexity, complemented by hints of cocoa. The velvety smooth, rounded cup is dark and rich with notes of molasses, chestnut and a hint of spice. The clean finish lingers with nuances of cinnamon and clove. Produced from a large-leaf varietal, this 4 ½ inch diameter round tea cake weighs approximately 95-100 grams and comes packaged in our silver packet.

ZH101 |
$0.44/cup
China loose leaf white tea
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This Shou Mei style white tea has been handcrafted into beautiful tea pearls. The golden ecru liquor is fragrant with notes of honey and spring flowers. The sweet cup has an herbaceous flavor with notes of ripe melon. A sweet, lingering finish completes a very special tea experience. Each 1" pearl will yield approximately 2 cups of tea.

ZW01 |
$0.78/cup
loose leaf China green tea
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Accented with silvery tips, the long and twisted dark-olive leaves of this green tea offering from Hunan province yield a pale gold liquor with a sweet floral aroma. The cup is buttery smooth and light with hints of melon and a vegetal whisper that leads to a clean finish.

ZG104 |
$0.45/cup
loose leaf black tea
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A tin (approx 35g) each of the following: TP12: Premium China Keemun, TD50: No.1 Tippy Orthodox GFOP Darjeeling, ZY51: China Yunnan TGFOP, and TB51: East Frisian BOP Assam Tea. Representative of a wide range of fine black teas.

Please note that Sampler Sets cannot be personalized.

SM30 |
$24.50
loose leaf China black tea
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The aromatic, dark-brown leaves of this Congou black tea produce a deep amber liquor, fragrant with hints of cocoa and a dark sugar sweetness. The medium-bodied cup is bright and smooth, featuring toasty/woody notes accented by hints of cocoa and a gentle, lingering toastiness. A solid everyday cup at an attractive price.

ZP101 |
$0.24/cup
China loose leaf green tea
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One of the finest China green teas is Lung Ching (Dragon Well). The liquor is pale yellow, slightly sweet, and very refreshing.

ZG71 |
$0.42/cup
loose leaf Yunnan black tea
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This medium-bodied selection boasts elegantly long, thin leaves that yield a dark copper liquor with a toasty aroma hinting of chocolate. A creamy smooth mouth feel sets the stage for rich notes of dark cocoa and honey. A whisper of spice lingers in the finish.

ZY81 |
$0.52/cup
Yunnan Green Snail
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Dark olive-green leaves have been rolled into tight spiral shapes to create this premium green snail tea offering from Yunnan province. An aroma reminiscent of sweet tobacco imparts an interesting counterpoint to the classic fruity flavor profile of a Yunnan green tea. The mouth feel is full and buttery smooth with a lingering finish that whispers of spice. This premium selection is the perfect choice for those looking for a less vegetal Chinese loose leaf green tea.

ZG103 |
$0.51/cup
Yunnan black dragon tea pearls
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Large, dark brown leaves have been carefully rolled into uniform pearl shapes to create this unique Black Dragon Pearl tea from Yunnan province. Both the dry pearls and the infused liquor are fragrant with the scent of chocolate, hinting of its delicious flavor. The golden-amber cup of Yunnan black tea is rich and earthy with notes of sweet cocoa and hints of stone fruit. The finish is smooth and lingering.

ZY75 |
$1.01/cup
Mao Frng Singlo Green Tea
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From Huangshan (yellow mountain) in An Hui province, this premium Mao Feng Singlo green tea offers handcrafted full-leaf sets that produce a pale gold liquor with a wonderfully complex aroma and flavor.

ZG111 |
$1.90/cup
Jasmine Pearl loose leaf green tea
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Select fine pluckings (two leaves and a bud), scented with the finest jasmine flowers and tightly rolled into pearl-sized spheres. A rare treat for Jasmine tea lovers.

ZJ90 |
$0.51/cup
Jasmine loose leaf white tea
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Silver downy tea buds have been expertly scented with jasmine, lending a sweet perfumed essence to this distinctive selection from Fujian province. The white tea base adds a light savory body to the pale straw-colored infusion. Gentle floral notes in the cup complement the herbaceous melon notes of the white tea. Hints of honey lead to a delicate, lingering finish.

ZJ95 |
$0.61/cup
China Keemun loose leaf black tea
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From An Hui province, home of the famous Hao-Ya Keemun teas, this selection offers a bright character with a suggestion of sweet tobacco in the aroma. The medium-bodied cup has warm toasty notes and a honey sweetness that blooms as the tea cools.

ZK52 |
$0.51/cup
China loose leaf Oolong tea
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An outstanding Tie-Guan-Yin Oolong selection, with an appealing floral intensity. The attractive, olive-green leaves produce a fragrant, pale gold infusion with a buttery smooth mouth feel. Orchid/lilac notes are prominent in both the flavor and aroma, as well as a hint of honey sweetness.

ZO82 |
$0.38/cup
USDA Organic China Keemun loose leaf organic black tea
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Restock available soon!
This superior organic loose leaf Imperial Keemun has the depth of flavor and refined complexity characteristic of top grade An Hui Congou teas. The long, wiry leaves produce a deep amber infusion with an aroma hinting of sweet spices and smoke. The smooth cup has notes of wine and cocoa, followed by a peppery hint in the finish.

ZK99 |
$1.23/cup
USDA Organic Jasmine organic loose leaf green tea
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This selection is produced via the careful processing of quality green tea with fragrant jasmine blossoms. The result is a mildly pungent tea with a pleasant aroma and delicate jasmine essence. The liquor has a pleasingly rich taste.

ZJ56 |
$0.17/cup
USDA Organic loose leaf keemun mao feng organic tea
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Restock available soon!
Long, perfectly twisted leaves produce a dark copper liquor fragrant with bittersweet cocoa notes in this premium Keemun Mao Feng tea. Notes of Burgundy and cocoa make an excellent pair in the rich, full-bodied cup. The smooth finish lingers with nuances of spice in this outstanding organic black tea offering.

ZK68 |
$0.50/cup
China loose leaf green tea
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Superior grade of green tea in the style of gunpowder teas (tightly rolled tea leaves resembling gunpowder pellets).

ZG20 |
$0.10/cup
USDA Organic China Silver Needle organic loose leaf white tea
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This special production from China is composed entirely of unopened leaf buds. The cup has a delicate, sweet aroma. The light liquor is refreshing with a sweet hint and a lightly nutty/fruity finish. An outstanding organic white tea.

ZW90 |
$0.57/cup
Loose leaf sticky rice China pu-erh tea
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This selection is a mixture of Shou Pu-Erh and the Nuo Mi Xiang herb. When infused, the liquor yields an earthy aroma with hints of cinnamon. The earthy flavor emerges in the cup, along with notes of dark molasses and honey. Each square or heart-shaped (as available) piece will yield approximately two cups of tea.

ZH34 |
$0.25/cup
loose leaf China black tea
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New lot arriving in the Fall!
The wiry, ebony-brown leaves of this premium loose leaf Congou black tea from Fujian province produce a very dark amber liquor with an enticing cocoa aroma. The smooth, rich cup tastes of premium dark chocolate accented by a whisper of spice. The finish is long and lingering with nuances of toffee. This decadent treat is the perfect accompaniment to dessert.

ZK101 |
$0.40/cup
Yunnan Zi Juan Congou Tea
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This unique black tea offering, “Zi Juan,” meaning “purple beauty,” originates from a purple bud varietal that was developed at the Menghai Research Station in Yunnan province. The purple-brown leaves have been loosely rolled and produce a dark amber liquor with a pronounced stone fruit aroma. The cup is smooth and sweet with a jammy/juicy character that hints of red wine. A suggestion of almond/nutty nuances leads to a clean finish.

ZP100 |
$0.54/cup
loose leaf Hubei Keemun Ji Hong Keemun tea
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Rated a top tea region since the Tang Dynasty, Hubei province produces this remarkable black tea. A special grade of Keemun.

ZK22 |
$0.17/cup
Lapsang Souchong loose leaf black tea
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Blended especially for Upton Tea Imports, this tea is a pleasing and subtly complex variation on a rich, smoky classic. The perfect gift for the Lapsang Souchong drinker who seeks a less smoky cup.

ZS90 |
$0.21/cup
China Yunnan loose leaf black tea
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The dark brown leaves of this selection are accented with golden tips. Rich, earthy notes are present in the aroma and dark amber cup, and hints of white pepper and cassia add a pleasing accent. The smooth finish has a light tangy feel.

ZY30 |
$0.15/cup
USDA Organic China organic loose leaf white tea
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A special grade of organic white tea, this Pai Mu Tan (Bai Mu Dan) selection has a full complement of tender leaf buds. The dark golden cup is well-balanced with an earthy, herbaceous aroma. The bolder leaf style yields a liquor with full flavor and subtle hints of melon and spice.

ZW57 |
$0.33/cup
China Yunnan loose leaf black tea
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This superior China black tea is a great after-dinner tea. Stands up nicely to milk; delectable plain. (Our original China Yunnan, introduced as item TP50.)

ZY51 |
$0.17/cup
USDA Organic loose leaf organic China sencha green tea
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Processed in the style of a Japanese Sencha tea, this selection is an excellent value for an everyday green tea. The golden cup is aromatic with floral hints and a sweet, buttery mouth feel.

ZG07 |
$0.09/cup
China loose leaf Oolong tea
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With a light oxidation level of less than 20%, this premium Oolong is produced in Anxi county of Fujian province. The name Huang Jin Gui translates to golden osmanthus, referring to the cup's light gold hue and osmanthus-like aroma and flavor.

ZO21 |
$0.19/cup
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