This rare and brilliant varietal was already known during the Song dynasty (960-1279) and is also known as the Song Variety (‘Song Zhong’). Its long, twisted, greenish strands bear a resemblance to tender, yellow bamboo shoot, and the mellow, orange-yellow liquor has long-lasting aroma with a hint of citrus oil with a foundation of honey and fruit.
It is barely roasted, and as one of the lightest, least oxidised Phoenix Oolongs falls somewhere between a ‘Qing’ and ‘Nong Xiang’. The tea’s thicker, smoother character and more pronounced and persistent finish are indications of its age and lineage.
The tea trees, which are more than a hundred years old, grow at over 900 meters above sea level on Wudong Mountain in the Phoenix range, and as you sip Huang Zhi you can imagine you’re looking into the bamboo forest-covered hillsides typical of the area and listening to their leaves rustling in the gentlest of winds.