CHP-149-The History of Tea Part 10

In this final episode of the CHP’s ten-part History of Tea series Laszlo travels from province to province introducing the more famous of China’s teas.


Tea in China: A Religious and Cultural History

by James A. Benn


The Spirit of Tea, a book and traveling exhibition by tea lover and photographer Matthew London.



Pu’er普洱  City in Yunnan famous for Pu’er Tea

Qingming Festival  清明节 Grave Sweeping Festival, usually around April 5-6

Shu Pu’er  熟普洱Ripe Pu’er Tea

Wodui  渥堆  The process to speed up the ripening of Pu’er tea

Longjing tea  龙井茶  The famous green tea from the West Lake area in Hangzhou

Qianlong  乾隆帝  Qing dynasty emperor. No need to get into an detail

Hugong Temple 胡公庙Temple in Longjing Village

Shanzhai 山寨  Slang for cheap imitation consumer goods

Maojian   毛尖  “Downy tip” or “Fur tip” tea leaves consisting of a bud and single leaf

Maofeng   毛峰  The classic bud set consisting of a bud and the two top leaves

Zhucha  珠茶  “Pearl” Tea or Gunpowder Tea

Pingshui 平水  Pingshui, just south of Shaoxing 紹興

Huangshan Maofeng  黄山毛峰  The most famous “maofeng” tea from the Huangshan area in Anhui

Huangshan  黄山  One of China’s sacred mountains, located in Anhui

Lu’an  六安  City in Anhui

Lu’an Guapian  六安瓜片  The specialty of Lu’an, Melon Seed Tea

Shanghai Tianshan Chacheng  上海天山茶城 A tea shopping center located in Shanghai

Chacheng  茶城  A tea city, the name given to these “tea malls”

Yan cha  岩茶  Rock Tea from the cliffs of Wuyi Shan

Xinyang Maojian  信阳毛尖  The specialty of Henan province, the most northerly grown tea in China.

Jiān  尖  Tip

Tsim Sha Tsui  尖沙咀  The district at the southern tip of Kowloon in Hong Kong

Xishuangbanna  西双版纳 City in southern Yunnan, ground zero for wild tea trees

Ankang  安康  Prefectural-level city located at the southeast corner of Shaanxi province. Known as the city of folk songs

Ziyang Maojian  紫阳毛尖茶  Selenium rich tea from Ziyang County in Shaanxi

  硒  Selenium

Taiping Houkui  太平猴魁  Tea grown near Huangshan in Anhui

Houkui  猴魁Monkey King

Bai Mudan  白牡丹White Peony tea

Baihao Yinzhen  白毫银针  Silver Needle tea.

Tieguanyin   铁观音Iron Goddess or Iron Buddha Tea named for Guanyin

Anxi  安溪  City in southern Fujian famous for their Tieguanyin Tea

Dancong  单枞The most famous tea coming from Guangdong province

Chaozhou  潮州  City bordering Shantou on the southeast coast of Guangdong

Shantou  汕头  City bordering Chaozhou on the southeast coast of Guangdong

Shaxian  沙县  County in west central Fujian province famous for, among other things, their snack foods

Sanming  三明市  city located next to Sha County

Jinjunmei   金骏眉A kind of black tea from Tongmu Village in Wuyi Shan Fujian

Tongmu Village 桐木村  Village near Wuyi Shanknown as the birthplace of black tea

Rougui  肉桂茶  Another famous and beloved Rock Tea from the Wuyi Shan area

Da Hong Pao  大红袍茶  “Big Red Robe” tea. One of the greatest and renowned Rock Teas

Tieluohan  铁罗汉茶  Another famous and beloved Rock Tea from the Wuyi Shan area

Shuixian  水仙茶  Another famous and beloved Rock Tea from the Wuyi Shan area

Shui Jin Gui  水金龟茶 Another famous and beloved Rock Tea from the Wuyi Shan area

Bai Ji Guan 白鸡冠茶 Another famous and beloved Rock Tea from the Wuyi Shan area

Li Chunsheng 李春生 A Fujianese called Co-father of the Taiwan Tea industry. Left a great legacy in early Taiwan history

Duyun Maojian  都匀毛尖  Tea from Duyun, Guizhou, about two hours by car west of the capital Guiyang

Yugou Cha  鱼勾茶  Fish Hook Tea, former name of Duyun Maojian Tea

Guiding Yunwu 贵顶云雾茶  A famous tea of Guizhou Province

Meijiang Cuipian  眉江翠片茶  Another great Guizhou green tea

Liubao六堡  in the eastern part of Guangxi near the border with Guangdong. Famous for their black tea. Particularly popular in Malaysia and among most all Pu’er lovers

Guiping Xishan tea  桂平西山茶Another great and much loved Guangxi Tea

Gan Lu Tea甘露茶  Sweet Dew Tea, the famous tea of Mengding Shan

Wu Lizhen  吴理真 Buddhist Monk credited with the cultivation of tea on Mengding Shan

Mengding Shan 蒙顶山 Mountain in Sichuan where tea cultivation began in China

Biancha  边茶  Border Tea, tea destined for the markets bordering China. They weren’t choosy

Renmin Gongyuan  人民公园  Nice park in central Chengdu where you can kick back, drink tea and groove on a little Chengdu traditional culture

Cháng zuǐ  长嘴壶  A long spouted tea pot

Chama Gudao  茶马古道 the Ancient Tea Horse Road

  荼  The old borrowed character for tea

Chá  茶  The character for tea, beginning around Lu Yu’s time in the Tang

Mengding shan Xueya  蒙顶山雪芽One of the big teas of the Mengding Shan area

Zhuyeqing  竹叶青茶 A great green tea from the E’Mei Shan area in Sichuan

Qingcheng shan Snow Bud  青城山雪芽茶Another great Sichuan Tea from the Dujiangyan area

E’mei Shan Maofeng  峨眉山毛峰  Yet another great green from Sichuan’s E’Mei Shan region

E’Mei Shan Bai Ya  峨眉山白牙Same with this one. Another famous Sichuan tea.

Biluochun  碧螺春  “Green Snail Spring” tea from Jiangsu province.

Kangxi  康熙  Grandfather of Qianlong.  Both of these emperors were great partons of imperial tea culture

Ming Mei tea茗眉茶a.k.a Lady’s Slender Eyebrows Tea, grown in Wuyuan County just east of Jingdezhen and just south of

Wuyuan County  婺源县County in Jiangxi famous for, among other things, tea

Lushan Yunwu  庐山云雾  Jiangxi’s famous Lushan Cloud and Mist tea

Jiujiang City  九江City on the western side of Lake Poyang in northwest Jiangxi

Zhu De  朱德  Mao’s oldest comrade and PLA Founder.  A living legend in his time and beloved by the people


Zhu De’s poem about Lushan Yunwu Tea, with Pinyin:

Lúshān yúnwù chá, wèi nóng xìng pōlà, ruò dé chángshí yǐn, yánnián yìshòu fǎ.”

The flavor of Lushan Yunwu tea is strong and intense.  If you drink it for long it is a way to attain longevity.



Yichang 宜昌  Historic city in southern Hubei

Jingmen  荆门Another ancient Hubei city located north of Yichang

Yuan’an County  远安县County in Hubei. Yichang is the administrative seat. Famous for their Yuan’an Lu Yuan Tea.

Yuan’an Lu Yuan远安鹿苑茶 The local specialty of Hubei Yuan’an County. A famous yellow tea

En’shi Yu Lu  恩施玉露茶  A Hubei green tea from the city of Enshi near the Wufeng Mountains

Junshan Yinzhen  君山银针茶  “Gentleman Mountain Silver Needle Tea”, a yellow tea only found on Junshan Island in Hunan

Dongting Hu  洞庭湖  Lake Dongting, located in northern Hunan

Hu  湖  Lake

Nan  南  South

Bei  北  North

Ba Shu  巴蜀  The ancient state in Sichuan who brought us tea cultivateon

Tang Taizong  唐太宗   The second emperor of the Tang Dynasty.  Already enough said about him



  • Just a quick note to thank you for the excellent 10 episodes on the History of Tea.

    Looking forward to see the full list of sources but meanwhile I have already bought few of the books and at the moment I am reading “To Think of Tea!”.


  • I just thought that I had better say thanks for the history of tea series, I really enjoyed it. Who knew that such a seemingly simple drink was such an interesting tale, spanning so many years and influencing so much history. I have developed a keen interest in tea thanks to this pleasantly informative series and am very excited to continue sampling some of the more exotic concoctions that the east has to offer. I am just sitting down now in Toronto’s Chinatown with a traditional gourd from bhutan filled with a nice Yerba Mate, a real experience if you have not had the pleasure yet. Anyhow, thanks Mr Montgomery, I look forward to your next episode of the CHP and i hope that you are enjoying recording them as much as I am enjoying absorbing them.

    • Jamie, I can’t even begin to tell you how much the pleasure is all mine. I’m glad you found them worthwhile. And I’ve never tried Yerba Mate, though I’ve seen it around everywhere here in SoCal. Now thanks to you I will go try it next time I see it. I hope you enjoy the other podcasts besides the History if Tea series. Thanks Jamie!

      • Oh yes, I’m a big fan of the whole CHP, and have listened to every episode. Chinese history is more interesting and exciting then any work of fantasy fiction, filled with swordplay and romantic affairs, trade, war and art and political intrigue. The best part is that there is SO MUCH of it!! Great job on the podcast in its entirety, not just the tea bits.

  • The tea series was my first introduction to CHP, and now I’ll be a regular listener – thanks so much for sharing your time and knowledge.

    • Thanks Neil. I was kind of hoping for that. The amount of emails I have received from tea lovers has led me to believe a lot of new listeners came for the tea but are sticking around for the China history. Mission accomplished I guess. Thanks Neil for letting me know. I’m really honored.

      • With me, it is the other way around. I came for the history and learned a new appreciation for tea. I lucked into a small parcel of Eight Horse Tie Quanyin tea some time ago, decided to sample it when I listened to the first installment of the History of Tea and now am trying find more (long, but fun story). Many thanks to you, Mr. Montgomery, for your delightful podcast. Hearing your voice means I have new history to discover and it always brightens my day.

  • I’ve listened to all of the tea podcasts and some, or parts of some, many more times than once and must admit that the fascinating and interesting wealth of new information about tea (matcha as we call it in the Japanese Tea Ceremony) has filled a sort of chasm that I felt existed in my overall knowledge of the subject and now am sure about it. That huge world of tea on the other side of the tea ceremony has diminished the snob appeal or exclusivity of the Japanese tea culture and now I’m anticipating visiting my tea dealer not only for the powdered variety that I generally use but for some of those leaf varieties that beg experimentation not that I don’t drink leaf tea. I just finished a brief ceremony that is a daily evening ritual using some more than decent matcha costing about $26.00 for 40g. named Shou Fuu-God-sent Wind?) from the Koyama-En plantation. I may have mentioned before that I’ve been doing this for more than 50 years. I’ve listened to many of your other podcasts and thank you again for making them not only available but for imbuing them with love and sincerity. I do wonder, though, what kind of sweets steeped tea drinkers might prefer. As you know here in Japan there are thousands of those delicate and usually expensive sweets that are a traditional accompaniment for both the steeped and ceremonial tea although it’s the ceremonial type that uses them. Is there some kind of trend?

    • Hi Donald,

      Not sure about those great Japanese sweets. The mochi type are readily available all over Hong Kong at the higher end grocery stores (CitySuper, 360 etc..). In doing this ten-part tea series I kept feeling the intense gravity of Japanese tea history. It was impossible not to mention Japan but so rich is their tea history and culture, I dared not get started in fear of the series spiraling out of control.

  • Thank you Mr. Montgomery for the great History of Tea series. Nothing felt so satisfying as having my cup of Dragon Well Green Tea while listening to your podcast.

  • I am so grateful for this podcast series. I have been resident in Chengdu for the last ten years having moved from NZ when I was 17. I am hoping to follow in your footsteps trying to find a lifelong career in this wonderful country. It is so fantastic to see people building goodwill and a greater understanding between China and the west. It has been such a revelation having someone share the passion for the history that i find so facsinating. My wife and I listen every day playing catch up and having lively debates about 朱元璋,秦始皇,and others. Its made our passion for history much more vivid. Anyway i find myself rambling. 感谢你。如果你来成都的话我想请你吃火锅或者喝蒙顶甘露

    • Thanks Andrew for such kind words. I was last in Chengdu a couple years ago and just loved the place. It’s one of my favorite cities in the world. The sooner I can return, the better….and I’ll take you up on your offer. For food and tea drinking, Chengdu stands head and shoulders above the rest!

  • Hi Lazlo,
    I hope you won’t mind me addressing you by your first name but after 150 episodes I feel as if I’ve known you for a very long time!
    I wanted to suggest that we nominate you for the Queen’s New Years honours, you definitely deserve an OBE or a CBE for your magnificent series of the CHP. Who knows, you may even become an honorary Knight of the British Empire!
    Keep up the good work!

    • I totally agree! Who fights more behind the scenes for The Special Relationship than I? Next episode, #160 is going to be another English-themed topic. Yet another topic where England gets to take a bow. Thanks for such kind and encouraging words. I appreciate your appreciation. Hopefully the best is yet to come.

  • I just discovered The China History Podcast and I’m loving it, especially this series about tea. Thanks for sharing your wealth of information and making it fun to learn!

    • Glad you liked it! Over a hundred hours of free stuff for you to check out. I hope you like the non-tea episodes too. Thanks Carole!

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