I had the pleasure of sampling this tea at the 2013 Los Angeles Tea Festival. I had a cup of Moonlight White from Jingmai raw pu’er and thought about it throughout the entire time I was at the festival. I tried so many teas at the festival and had many bathroom trips. Before I left, I felt this tea was the gem of the tea festival and I had to buy it!
As a side note and not to get confused with, Bana Tea Company also has a 2007 Moonlight White Cake. I’ll be sampling the 2012 loose leaf with the same name.
Very attractive packaging. The pale spring green is quite attractive, reminding me of spring (which is here! Well, more like summer where I am, it was 31c the other day!)
Moonlight White from Jingmai raw pu’er has a very dry woodsy herb scent, as if I opened a package of planting seeds. The appearance looks like silver needle white tea – long curved spears of silver, mixed with thin black leaf. This doesn’t look like any raw pu’er I’ve come across so far.
Actually, this tea looks similar to Mandala Tea’s White Night that they could be twins.
Hmmm, the Tea Owls and I will compare the two teas later in this post.
I followed Bana Tea Company‘s instructions, but using 200f water.
First infusion I had a pale pale yellow cup of tea. Actually, the camera was being very fussy on picking up any colour in my steep, but it’s there.
The scent of Moonlight White from Jingmai raw pu’er is very soft, like fresh blooming wild flowers.
Tasting of Bana Tea Company’s Moonlight White from Jingmai Raw Pu’er
First through Fifth Infusion: Wow, very creamy! Moonlight White from Jingmai raw pu’er has a super creamy texture throughout the sip. There are interesting nectar and malty notes. The nectar note is quite sweet – it’s like a peach with all the peachy flavor removed and just the sweetness. The tea is very very smooth and full flavored, despite the super pale colouring. Also exceptionally clean taste too as if I’m drinking from a spring. Moonlight White from Jingmai raw pu’er could be seen as pretty close to a white tea, but stronger bodied with no floral or grassy notes. Just pure nectar, cream, and malt flavor. The creamy texture lingers after each sip, like I’m drinking cream. With all that said, Moonlight White from Jingmai raw pu’er is also very easy to drink with no dryness.
Moonlight White from Jing Mai pu’er also is very consistent in flavor after many infusions. The first through fifth infusion were pretty much the same, each sip addictive and delicious.
Sixth, Seventh, and Eighth Infusion: At this point I’m more aggressive with steep times, adding a minute by the eighth infusion. At the sixth infusion mark, the tea has steeped a more noticeable gold colour. Flavor is still the same!
Ninth, Tenth, Eleventh Infusion: Moonlight White from Jingmai raw pu’er has began to shift – as if I stayed awake under the moonlight for too long and I’m getting tired or the moon is waning. Moonlight White from Jingmai raw pu’er developed some astringency, 1/10, which keeps the flavor sticking around longer, with each infusion the dryness getting stronger, up to a 3/10. With the astringency, the texture shifts from creamy smooth to more abrasive. Still quite nectar in flavor and delicious – though at this point I’m doing long steeps to keep the late night party going.
Comparison: Though appearance wise Bana Tea Company‘s Moonlight White from Jing Mai pu’er looks very much like Mandala Tea’s White Night (which is a white tea). I decided to compare the two teas, using the same steeping method. I found the teas tasted very different! Mandala Tea’s White Night is much more earthy, bright and green grape sweet, whereas Moonlight White from Jingmai raw pu’er is more mellow, creamy and malty. Very interesting how the teas can look the same, though different families, and taste very different!
Bana Tea Company‘s Moonlight White from Jingmai raw pu’er is a lovely raw pu’er with a very unique flavor. I love how creamy this tea is, it is like drinking a milky custard! This tea would be perfect for someone who wants a full flavored tea similar to a white, but without the floral crispness that comes with a white tea. Moonlight White from Jing Mai pu’er also resteeps very well, maintaining full flavor over many infusions.
I usually enjoy more complex teas that change with each infusion, but the consistent flavor and texture of Moonlight White from Jingmai raw pu’er was so good, I couldn’t get enough of it! Overall, Moonlight White from Jingmai raw pu’er is fantastic and highly recommended!
Bonus: Tea Owl – Hey, I was sitting in that gaiwan!