In terms of the world’s rarest teas, hand rolled Pai Mu Tan ranks amongst the most difficult to come by. Only a few thousand kilos are produced per year. Of this, most is snapped up by collectors in China and Germany.
Securing a decent supply requires the right contacts, a little patience and a whole lot of luck. That’s right, luck. So it comes as no surprise to learn that the tea was created as a tribute to one of the “luckiest” substances on earth, panda tears. So, how did Panda Tears come to be regarded as lucky? An ancient Tibetan legend explains. Millennia ago, Pandas lived in the high Himalayas and were as white as the snow-capped peaks they called home.
A family of the bears became friends with some shepherdesses from a nearby village who would graze their goats on the lower mountain slopes. One day, as the shepherdesses were playing with a panda cub, a leopard leapt from a nearby bush, trying to get the cub. The shepherdesses threw themselves in front of the cub and in saving its life, were all killed by the leopard.
When the Pandas heard the news that their friends had been killed, they covered their arms in black ashes, as was local custom. The mourning went on for days and as the pandas consoled each other, the ashes spread over their bodies. (Interestingly, this legend also explains how Pandas got their black markings.)The Pandas, feeling terribly about the deaths of the shepherdesses decided that to make up for the village’s great loss they would grant wishes to anyone who asked.
In those days, Panda tears were believed to have magical abilities. So the bears began collecting the tears they shed over the tragic event and bottling them for the villagers to use for their own use.Years passed and at some point, an ancient tea artisan decided to create some magic of his own by developing this exquisite, handmade masterpiece.
This magnificent white tea is made in accordance with his ancient recipe and opens with light, greenish notes, subtle tones of grass, wheat and ultra faint green apple on the finish. An incredible tea – brew a pot and make a wish.