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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 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 |
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 |
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.

ZG30 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
China Keemun loose leaf black tea
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A fine complement of golden tips sets this stylish selection apart. The flavor has classic Burgundy-like Keemun notes, with subtle smokiness and a hint of cocoa. This one comes close to the Hao-Ya 'A' Keemun of days past.

ZK96 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
USDA Organic China Keemun loose leaf organic black tea
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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 |
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 |
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 |
USDA Organic loose leaf keemun mao feng organic tea
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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 |
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 |
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 |
Loose leaf Fujian Oolong supreme tea
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From its honeyed aroma to its smooth, fruity flavor, this Oolong selection from Fujian province offers many fine qualities. A pronounced honey sweetness complements hints of pear and apple in the light amber cup. Toasty/woody nuances lead to a clean finish.

ZO90 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
Griffins Warf Afternoon Blend Loose Leaf Tea
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In this elegant blend of China Congou and Lapsang Souchong black teas, bold, ebony-brown leaves produce a dark whiskey-colored liquor with a pronounced peat smoke aroma. The velvety smooth cup is layered with notes of mellow smoke and Burgundy, accented by a whisper of toffee sweetness. The deep rich flavor lingers long into the finish.

BTP2 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
loose leaf China black tea
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We are excited to offer this outstanding black tea selection as most teas of this superior quality do not leave China. Less than 9 kilograms was produced in Tong Mu, located high in the Wuyi Mountains (formerly Bohea Hills) of northern Fujian province. The large wiry, ebony-brown leaves yield a dark ruby-amber liquor with an inviting caramel aroma hinting of marzipan. The exquisitely smooth cup fills your mouth with a rich depth of flavor – toasted almond notes, hints of warming spices and honeyed apricot, a whisper of earthy smokiness – all embraced by a sweet syrupy quality. The finish lingers with a whisper of spice. This stellar selection is truly a joy to savor.

ZP102 |
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 |
USDA Organic China Silver Needle organic loose leaf white tea
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This special production 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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
Loose leaf China Keemun Hong Cha tea
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The fragrant, dark brown leaves yield a deep amber liquor with a light smoky aroma, hinting of earth and wine. The smooth cup is rich and full-bodied, accented with smoky/earthy nuances. The finish lingers with a hint of spice.

ZK33 |
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 |
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 |
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 |
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