September 7 2012
Fumigated tea has always been a favorite drink of the Chinese, especially those in north China who favored jasmine tea in particular. The quality of the fumigated tea is subject to the quality of the basic tea, flower and the fumigation process. The fumigation process of jasmine tea is complex: first process the jasmine and the basic tea, then mix the fresh jasmine (blooming in the evening) with the tea and keep the mixture aside for fumigation; after the first fumigation, sieve the flower and dry the tea; and then fumigate the tea with the fresh jasmine for a second time, the third time.... High-quality fumigated tea normally undergoes three to five fumigations. The fumigated tea is packed directly without drying along with a small quantity of high-quality fresh flower. This process is called tihua (enhancing flavor). The lower-quality fumigated tea is normally fumigated only once or twice, or with used flowers.
The fumigated tea is named after the flower it used, for instance, jasmine tea, white michelia tea, Zhulan tea, Daidai tea, sweet-scented osmanthus tea and rose tea. The jasmine tea is the best in quality and largest in quantity. The basic tea used is mostly the baked green tea. black tea or blue tea.