-Research team @ 茶水部 LittoTea, 澄萃茶藝.
The stereotype of alpine tea
Alpine tea is tea which grows over an altitude of 1000 meters. It smells strong with the sweet and soft taste. The reason why alpine tea could be better is because the environment and the climate in the high mountain. It is always cold and cloud around in the high mountain. Due to the fog , shorter sunshine and rich organic substances in the soil, the environment provides enough nutrition for tea trees to grow, which increase water, chlorophyll and amino acids in tea, keeping the higher quality[1-4].
Research has shown that polyphenols and catechin would decrease with the altitude increasing or the temperature decreasing. Amino acids and soluble nitrogen would increase with the altitude increasing or the temperature decreasing. Furthermore, polyphenols and catechin make tea bitter, meanwhile, amino acids and soluble nitrogen make tea sweeter. Therefore, amino acids and soluble nitrogen in alpine tea which grows in the high mountain is more than lowland tea, which make alpine tea taste sweeter and softer[1-4].
Some kinds of tea trees, such as green tip oolong variety, have the weaker resistance to pests and the weather, which is suitable to be planted in rather the high mountain than the lowland. The advantage of alpine tea is the growing environment. However, the processing usually plays an important role on the quality as well. Alpine tea is usually processed after plucking in the original place. The plucking starts from the morning to the afternoon. Sometimes tea leaves age because they are exposed to the sun instead of being plucked timely. In addition, the weather is usually unstable in the afternoon, which would lead to insufficient sunshine related to withering, and also influence the quality of tea. Furthermore, inconvenient transport in the high mountain makes the cost of transport and human resource higher. The high-class alpine tea is really difficult to make[5-6].
It is undoubted that alpine tea has its unique characteristics. The cold environment makes more amino acids and less catechin. Alpine tea smells fragrant and has a sweet aftertaste. In addition, some tea trees are only suitable to grow in the high mountain. In contrast, lowland tea grows in the environment where the temperature is higher, which make catechin more. Meanwhile. it would secret more caffeine to fight for pests. Therefore, lowland tea tastes quite bitter. However, lowland tea contains more catechin that has strong antioxidant capacity, which can help prevent many diseases, and benefits our health a lot. Furthermore, Tea Research and Extension Station has developed tea trees that can grow in the lowland, such as TTES No. 12. TTES No. 12 has not only higher resistance to pests but also fragrant scent. Lowland tea can have the same quality as alpine tea, which becomes another good choice of drinking.
Both alpine tea and lowland tea are good with their different characteristics and tastes. You can have the different choice depends on your favorite flavor or your habits. There shouldn’t be the stereotype that alpine tea is better. Let’s break this stereotype with LittoTea.
-Research team @茶水部 LittoTea, 澄萃茶藝.