Temple Gunpowder #1
Ingredients: 100% Organic green rolled tea leaves
Gunpowder tea is made by rolling dark green tea leaves into small pellets which resemble gunpowder.
It is a nice, strong green tea with a distinctive nutty-oak taste. A traditional favorite of meditating Buddhists (and non-Buddhists), Classic Chinese Pinhead-sized Gunpowder is made of tiny tightly-rolled grey green leaves.
The cup is deep amber with a slightly fruity, smoky-spicy flavor. Medium astringency which can be fully mediated with a shorter steeping time, if so desired. Also called "pearl tea," it makes a very good iced tea - try with mint and agave nectar!
Also called "Temple of Heaven gunpowder" this is the highest grade Gunpowder available and responds well to a short steep. Can be re-steeped.
Other Names: Gun Powder, Lo Chu Ch’a, Zhu Cha, Temple of Heaven Gunpowder.
Water: 195°F | Leaves: 2 tsp per 12 ounce cup | Infusion Time: 1.5-2 minutes
Basic Steeping Tips
- Use filtered or spring water, whenever possible
- Don’t overboil water
- A short steep of this strong tea yields superb results.
- If you want stronger tea, use more leaves instead of steeping for a longer time
Medical research has suggested that green tea plays a role in prevention of age-related and brain degeneration diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson. Its antioxidant properties are thought to reduce free radical damage and the breakdown of neurotransmitters.
Gunpowder tea production dates back to the Tang Dynasty (618-907AD). In China, Gunpowder tea is known by various names, such as pinyin and zhucha. The origin of the English name may have stemmed from the Chinese term for freshly brewed, “gang pao de,” which sounds much like the English word “gunpowder”. Another theory is that the English name rose from the fact that the grey-green tea leaves are tightly rolled into tiny pellets and “explodes” into a long leaf when steeped. The tea is now principally produced in the Zhejiang Province of China.
Today, the process of making gunpowder tea is highly automated; however, the highest quality of the tea is still hand-rolled. Rolling allows the tea leaves to be less susceptible to damage, allowing the leaves to retain more of their flavor and aroma. The shinier gunpowder pellets indicate higher quality and freshness, whereas the pellets that are not are usually older and of lesser quality. Also, the smaller and tighter the pellet is, the higher the quality is.
Temple Gunpowder is one of the various varieties of Gunpowder tea out there. It is the original and most common variety of Gunpowder out there – it has larger pearls, stronger color, and a more aromatic infusion. Other varieties of Gunpowder include Formosa Gunpowder which is produced in Taiwan near Keelung and Ceylong Gunpowder from Sri Lanka.