Baozhong tea - you either love it or hate it. It is the most controversial tea out of all the products we carry, purely because of its taste. It is a very traditional Asian loose-leaf tea—bitter and strong. It’s like having to choose between ‘New York or LA’ or ‘Rihanna or Beyonce’ - there is no right answer, just personal preference. I LOVE Baozhong tea, but I am also the kind of gal who loves dark chocolate, iced Americano with no milk, and super spicy food. Most importantly, I have a soft spot for Baozhong tea because it reminds me of my grandpa—it is his favorite tea.
Taste and Aroma:
Baozhong in Chinese, means "the wrapped kind", referring to a practice of wrapping the leaves in paper during the drying process that’s not commonly found in the U.S. The caffeine level is in between green tea and Oolong tea. I like how refreshing it is. The slight bitter taste cleanses your palate while leaving a mellow floral and honeydew melon fragrance in your mouth. I love the aroma of Baozhong—it reminds me of one of the Asian tea shops I used to go to when I was little. It smells like tradition with hundreds of years of history.
It depends on how strong you like your tea, but I usually take the tea bag out after 3 minutes. This tea can get super bitter and strong if you leave it in the cup for too long. My grandpa will leave the tea inside the entire time because he loves the bitter taste. He said that’s how tea is supposed to be.
My go-to self care tea:
I usually drink Baozhong tea in the afternoon especially when I am feeling tired or restless. It really has a magical power to help me unwind. Lately, I’ve been having mood swings and my body has been feeling more tired than ever. I am not sure if it’s due to the seasonal change in New York or the collective energy of what’s happening in the U.S, but I just want to shut down, especially on the weekend, and have some alone time to read, cook, put on a mask and watch some Netflix.
It was a ritual for my grandpa and I to drink tea together every weekend after our family dinner. I remember he would always ask me the same question, “How’s school?”, and I would always answer, “Good!”. That was our conversation. But I looked forward to it every weekend because I knew that was his way of saying “I love you”. People say food can transport you back to your childhood. For me, Baozhong is more than an afternoon tea, it is also a loving memory.