This offering is the extra fine Pinhead Gunpowder tea originating in China. It derives its name from the resemblance to gunpowder. The young leaves are rolled into very small pellets before they are pan fired. Pinhead Gunpowder is known for its strong flavor and dark colored infusions. 2 oz. should make 20-25 cups of tea, depending on how strong you make each cup and consecutive infusions
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Gunpowder tea (Chinese: 珠茶; pinyin: zhū chá; literally: "pearl tea"; pronounced [ʈʂú ʈʂʰǎ]) is a form of Chinese tea in which each leaf has been rolled into a small round pellet. Its English name comes from its resemblance to grains of gunpowder. This rolling method of shaping tea is most often applied either to dried green tea (the most commonly encountered variety outside China) or oolong tea.
Gunpowder tea production dates back to the Tang Dynasty 618–907. It was first introduced to Taiwan in the 19th century. Gunpowder tea leaves are withered, steamed, rolled, and then dried. Although the individual leaves were formerly rolled by hand, today most gunpowder tea is rolled by machines (though the highest grades are still rolled by hand). Rolling renders the leaves less susceptible to physical damage and breakage and allows them to retain more of their flavor and aroma. In addition, it allows certain types of oolong teas to be aged for decades if they are cared for by being occasionally roasted.