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30th July 2021

By David White

Fujian Tea: Deep Dive Into Fujian – Home of Tea Innovation

In the south east of China, across from the strait of Taiwan, lies Fujian province, a land of tea mountains and coastal cities.

Fujian is considered to be one of China’s most innovative and diverse tea producing regions.

Fujian is considered to be one of China’s most innovative and diverse tea producing regions.


Fujian has a subtropical climate, with seasonal summer rains and dry winters making for ideal tea farming conditions.

Fujian has a subtropical climate, with seasonal summer rains and dry winters making for ideal tea farming conditions.


A map of the main tea regions in Fujian.

A map of the main tea regions in Fujian.


The Wuyi Mountains are a biodiverse mountain range characterised by dense sandstone forests, high mountain peaks and dome-shaped cliffs.

The Wuyi Mountains are a biodiverse mountain range characterised by dense sandstone forests, high mountain peaks and dome-shaped cliffs.


Further south in Anxi County is where you'll find ball-rolled oolongs like our Iron Buddha.

Further south in Anxi County is where you'll find ball-rolled oolongs like our Iron Buddha.

Fujian teas - The region’s coastal climes and fertile soils offer the perfect conditions for producing a great variety of teas – from mountain oolongs to rich black teas and light, delicate white teas. So, if you’re like us and love exploring the huge range of tea flavours, then Fujian is somewhere that’s worth getting to know.

What Is Fujian Like?

Fujian is considered to be one of China’s most innovative and diverse tea producing regions, with expertise rooted in the tea gardens that cover the dense mountain ranges of the province. Not only is it the birthplace of jasmine tea, flowering tea, black tea and oolong tea, it’s also where you’ll discover some of the most prized white teas, like Silver Needle and White Peony. This know-how has also led Fujian to become the largest province for tea cultivation in China, so it’s the perfect place to look for new and varied tastes from producers and communities that still hold the knowledge of centuries of tea making.

Fujian has a subtropical climate, with seasonal summer rains and dry winters making for ideal tea farming conditions. There’s plenty of hydration and cool weather for slow growing, nutrient-rich and flavourful tea bushes. Fujian is also mountainous, with elevations of up to 2,000m in the north of the region. As the traditional saying goes Fujian is ‘eight parts mountain, one part water, and one part farmland’ (八山一水一分田).

Besides tea, food also plays a big part in Fujianese culture, especially during festival seasons like Chinese New Yar and the Mid-Autumn Festival, when families usually gather and share a big banquet. There’s typically lots of seafood and woodland delicacies cooked up to create flavourful dishes, often in the famous ‘drunken’ wine-braised style or, in rich soupy broths called ‘geng’. From local fish, shrimp, oysters and crab to indigenous varieties of mushrooms, cabbages and bamboo shoots, sourced directly from the coastal and mountainous regions. Here’s a place with a deep-rooted respect for flavour and nature.

Mooncakes - a traditional delicacy enjoyed over Mid-Autumn Festival.

Mooncakes - a traditional delicacy enjoyed over Mid-Autumn Festival.

What Are The Tea Regions Of Fujian?

 Although Fujian is covered in mountainous tea gardens, there are several regions that produce their own distinct styles of tea, and you’ll only find authentic versions from these very places. They truly encapsulate their ‘taste of place’. In these regions, the method and craft of tea production is usually tightly held by the local tea makers who will have learnt to produce the local style of tea by heart through experience.

The capital of Fujian is Fuzhou, a major centre of tea culture and home to Fuzhou Jasmine tea; a green tea which is scented with real jasmine flowers for up to 8 days using a traditional process that remains unchanged since the Song dynasty.

The largest areas for tea production, however, lie elsewhere in the province. To the north is the stunning Wuyi Mountains nature reserve, an area of towering red rocky cliffs, a snaking nine bend river and of course, ancient tea gardens famous for crafting dark, roasted oolong teas. These Wuyi oolongs are often imparted with a minerally taste due to the rocky terroir in which the bushes are grown, giving them the nickname ‘Yan Cha’ or Rock Tea. Wuyi is also home to Tong Mu village near the norther Fujian border, where the first ever black tea Zhengshan Xiaozhong (lapsang souchong) was innovated in the 1600s.

East of Wuyi you will find Fuding county, the home of white tea in China, where delicate and refreshing teas like Silver Needle and White Peony are crafted in the coastal mountains around Fuding city. During the 2000’s the region had become plagued by pesticide use and land clearing to provide for a growing demand in tea production. But to protect the reputation and quality of Fuding white tea the local government have since put strict rules against these activities, thereby returning the area to an eco-friendly environment where some of the highest quality white teas are produced.

As you head further south in Fujian, the focus is on floral and fragrant, ball-rolled oolongs from Anxi County like Iron Buddha. Up in the rolling mountains of this small area you’ll find many of the hillsides covered with tea gardens and forests. Even from the roadsides you’re likely to spot many local people picking and producing this lightly oxidised style of oolong tea from their own tea bushes, some making just enough to drink for themselves. Beyond these famous terroirs though, tea production in Fujian is still incredibly varied with green, white, oolong, jasmine and black tea being produced in many places, perhaps some still waiting to be discovered outside of China.

Iron Buddha producer Wang Rongfeng in his garden in Anxi.

Iron Buddha producer Wang Rongfeng in his garden in Anxi.

Did You Know?

Fujian province produces more tea than any other region in China and in a smaller space too. The tea farmers of Fujian create nearly 380,000 tons of tea each year, enough for around 86 billion cups of tea.

Which Teas From Fujian Should I Try?

 There’s an amazing variety of teas to discover from Fujian, with tastes ranging from fruity to spiced, fragrant to rocky and many intriguing flavours in between. So, here are four teas from Fujian we think are well worth exploring and a bit about who might enjoy them best:

  1. JING Tea Jasmine Pearls Loose Leaf Green Tea
    Quick Add
    Green TeaJasmine PearlsJasmine, Grass, SapFrom Dixu Garden, Yunnan, China
    £13.0050g

Jasmine Pearls

If you like the sound of a tea with intense and lasting floral aromas, a sweet taste and still enough body to be fulfilling then you’ll really enjoy this one.

Produced in Houping Garden by tea maker Liu Guoqing, this jasmine scented green tea is a firm JING favourite. The green tea used to make these delicate pearls is handpicked in the spring using the freshest buds and young leaves. Once expertly processed, each pearl is rolled by hand, before being scented for five nights with real jasmine blossoms to impart an authentic and lasting scent into the leaves. You’ll find a sweet jasmine taste and a syrupy smooth texture.

Shop Jasmine Pearls

  1. JING Tea Wuyi Oolong Loose Leaf Oolong Tea
    Quick Add
    Oolong TeaWuyi OolongCacao, Stone Fruit, RoseFrom Huangcun Garden, Fujian, China
    £19.0050g

Wuyi Oolong

Try this if you’re after a tea with a darker and more complex taste. Look for layered flavours of baked fruit and dark chocolate.

Produced in Hangcun Garden by tea maker Zhong Yuanlin and hailing from the prized terroir of the Wuyi Mountains, this is the original style of oolong, picked in the spring and then carefully oxidised to illicit complex fruit and floral notes. The depth and texture of this tea is brought out by a final roasting of the leaves to add to the iconic Wuyi character, with a layer of caramel sweetness and a hint of rock-like minerality in the finish.

Shop Wuyi Oolong

Aged Fuding White Peony

If you’re looking for something complex that will continue to develop over time with meadowy floral notes and a sweet note of honey then give this a try.

 Produced in Shanhugang garden, this tea might seem a bit unusual as it’s 6 years old. But for white teas from Fujian province this is quite normal and in fact can be a prized find. White teas are picked during the spring with the leaves simply withered and dried, meaning that no heat is applied to stop oxidation. Therefore, the tea leaves will continually age slowly over years, possibly many decades, with the flavour deepening and darkening over time. After 6 years you can expect to find some more honeyed notes, with hints of red fruit coming through and thick texture. We think it’s certainly worth trying now but could get even better as time goes by.

Shop Aged Fuding White Peony

  1. Product Tea Oolong Tea Iron Buddha loose leaf Ziplock bag 100g
    Quick Add
    Oolong TeaIron Buddha (Tieguanyin)Orchid, Melon, Vanilla CreamFrom Dazhai Garden, Fujian, China
    £17.0050g

Iron Buddha

This one is for fans of Taiwanese oolongs like Ali Shan or Li Shan. If you love a bright, floral and slightly creamy taste that will leave you fully refreshed then this classic oolong is a must try.

Produced in Dazhai Garden by tea maker Wang Rongfeng, this is an icon of Fujianese teas with a mythical origin story. Supposedly gifted to a lowly farmer by the bodhisattva Guan Yin, this tea, known locally as Tie Guan Yin (Iron Buddha), is now a world renowned oolong tea that is loved for it’s easy drinking character and refreshing flavour. Being only lightly oxidised the leaves retain their green hue and are tightly ball-rolled to unravel in your teapot and impart their sweetly floral flavour and creamy texture.

Shop Iron Buddha

Our Tea-ieres are super easy to make loose leaf in and get great taste every time.

Our Tea-ieres are super easy to make loose leaf in and get great taste every time.

What’s The Best Way to Enjoy These Teas?

Our glass Tea-ieres work for all these teas, making it super easy to get great taste, and our simple recipes will ensure the perfect cup every time. In Fujian the locals will often enjoy their tea in the ‘gong fu’ style, a method for infusing tea which is common throughout China. This technique calls for a higher proportion of leaf and less water to prepare multiple, short infusions. Because of the lower volume of water, you’ll often see a small teapot or a gaiwan (lidded bowl) being used, though we like to use our Tea Master to make it even easier. Making tea in this way delivers a concentrated view of the flavours and aromas which you can follow as they evolve throughout the infusions. If you want to try this at home then here’s a basic guide, which is a great place to start for any of our teas:

Start by preheating your teapot with some boiling water for 30 seconds. Discard this water and immediately add 4g of tea leaves. Allow these to sit for a few seconds in the hot teapot to release the aroma – this is my favourite bit as the fragrance of a tea can be so enjoyable! Then add 125ml of hot water (check the temperature needed for your tea) and allow to infuse for 30-40 seconds. Pour out the whole infusion and enjoy. You can then re-infuse your tea multiple times, adding a few more seconds each time. You can think about how the intensity of the taste evolves and what notes you’re finding or sit and be mindful about the process by spending some time enjoying a relaxing tea session.

Check out our simple gong fu video guide to get started with this fun tea making method.

Fujian is considered to be one of China’s most innovative and diverse tea producing regions.

Fujian is considered to be one of China’s most innovative and diverse tea producing regions.


Fujian has a subtropical climate, with seasonal summer rains and dry winters making for ideal tea farming conditions.

Fujian has a subtropical climate, with seasonal summer rains and dry winters making for ideal tea farming conditions.


A map of the main tea regions in Fujian.

A map of the main tea regions in Fujian.


The Wuyi Mountains are a biodiverse mountain range characterised by dense sandstone forests, high mountain peaks and dome-shaped cliffs.

The Wuyi Mountains are a biodiverse mountain range characterised by dense sandstone forests, high mountain peaks and dome-shaped cliffs.


Further south in Anxi County is where you'll find ball-rolled oolongs like our Iron Buddha.

Further south in Anxi County is where you'll find ball-rolled oolongs like our Iron Buddha.

Fujian teas - The region’s coastal climes and fertile soils offer the perfect conditions for producing a great variety of teas – from mountain oolongs to rich black teas and light, delicate white teas. So, if you’re like us and love exploring the huge range of tea flavours, then Fujian is somewhere that’s worth getting to know.

What Is Fujian Like?

Fujian is considered to be one of China’s most innovative and diverse tea producing regions, with expertise rooted in the tea gardens that cover the dense mountain ranges of the province. Not only is it the birthplace of jasmine tea, flowering tea, black tea and oolong tea, it’s also where you’ll discover some of the most prized white teas, like Silver Needle and White Peony. This know-how has also led Fujian to become the largest province for tea cultivation in China, so it’s the perfect place to look for new and varied tastes from producers and communities that still hold the knowledge of centuries of tea making.

Fujian has a subtropical climate, with seasonal summer rains and dry winters making for ideal tea farming conditions. There’s plenty of hydration and cool weather for slow growing, nutrient-rich and flavourful tea bushes. Fujian is also mountainous, with elevations of up to 2,000m in the north of the region. As the traditional saying goes Fujian is ‘eight parts mountain, one part water, and one part farmland’ (八山一水一分田).

Besides tea, food also plays a big part in Fujianese culture, especially during festival seasons like Chinese New Yar and the Mid-Autumn Festival, when families usually gather and share a big banquet. There’s typically lots of seafood and woodland delicacies cooked up to create flavourful dishes, often in the famous ‘drunken’ wine-braised style or, in rich soupy broths called ‘geng’. From local fish, shrimp, oysters and crab to indigenous varieties of mushrooms, cabbages and bamboo shoots, sourced directly from the coastal and mountainous regions. Here’s a place with a deep-rooted respect for flavour and nature.

Mooncakes - a traditional delicacy enjoyed over Mid-Autumn Festival.

Mooncakes - a traditional delicacy enjoyed over Mid-Autumn Festival.

What Are The Tea Regions Of Fujian?

 Although Fujian is covered in mountainous tea gardens, there are several regions that produce their own distinct styles of tea, and you’ll only find authentic versions from these very places. They truly encapsulate their ‘taste of place’. In these regions, the method and craft of tea production is usually tightly held by the local tea makers who will have learnt to produce the local style of tea by heart through experience.

The capital of Fujian is Fuzhou, a major centre of tea culture and home to Fuzhou Jasmine tea; a green tea which is scented with real jasmine flowers for up to 8 days using a traditional process that remains unchanged since the Song dynasty.

The largest areas for tea production, however, lie elsewhere in the province. To the north is the stunning Wuyi Mountains nature reserve, an area of towering red rocky cliffs, a snaking nine bend river and of course, ancient tea gardens famous for crafting dark, roasted oolong teas. These Wuyi oolongs are often imparted with a minerally taste due to the rocky terroir in which the bushes are grown, giving them the nickname ‘Yan Cha’ or Rock Tea. Wuyi is also home to Tong Mu village near the norther Fujian border, where the first ever black tea Zhengshan Xiaozhong (lapsang souchong) was innovated in the 1600s.

East of Wuyi you will find Fuding county, the home of white tea in China, where delicate and refreshing teas like Silver Needle and White Peony are crafted in the coastal mountains around Fuding city. During the 2000’s the region had become plagued by pesticide use and land clearing to provide for a growing demand in tea production. But to protect the reputation and quality of Fuding white tea the local government have since put strict rules against these activities, thereby returning the area to an eco-friendly environment where some of the highest quality white teas are produced.

As you head further south in Fujian, the focus is on floral and fragrant, ball-rolled oolongs from Anxi County like Iron Buddha. Up in the rolling mountains of this small area you’ll find many of the hillsides covered with tea gardens and forests. Even from the roadsides you’re likely to spot many local people picking and producing this lightly oxidised style of oolong tea from their own tea bushes, some making just enough to drink for themselves. Beyond these famous terroirs though, tea production in Fujian is still incredibly varied with green, white, oolong, jasmine and black tea being produced in many places, perhaps some still waiting to be discovered outside of China.

Iron Buddha producer Wang Rongfeng in his garden in Anxi.

Iron Buddha producer Wang Rongfeng in his garden in Anxi.

Did You Know?

Fujian province produces more tea than any other region in China and in a smaller space too. The tea farmers of Fujian create nearly 380,000 tons of tea each year, enough for around 86 billion cups of tea.

Which Teas From Fujian Should I Try?

 There’s an amazing variety of teas to discover from Fujian, with tastes ranging from fruity to spiced, fragrant to rocky and many intriguing flavours in between. So, here are four teas from Fujian we think are well worth exploring and a bit about who might enjoy them best:

  1. JING Tea Jasmine Pearls Loose Leaf Green Tea
    Quick Add
    Green TeaJasmine PearlsJasmine, Grass, SapFrom Dixu Garden, Yunnan, China
    £13.0050g

Jasmine Pearls

If you like the sound of a tea with intense and lasting floral aromas, a sweet taste and still enough body to be fulfilling then you’ll really enjoy this one.

Produced in Houping Garden by tea maker Liu Guoqing, this jasmine scented green tea is a firm JING favourite. The green tea used to make these delicate pearls is handpicked in the spring using the freshest buds and young leaves. Once expertly processed, each pearl is rolled by hand, before being scented for five nights with real jasmine blossoms to impart an authentic and lasting scent into the leaves. You’ll find a sweet jasmine taste and a syrupy smooth texture.

Shop Jasmine Pearls

  1. JING Tea Wuyi Oolong Loose Leaf Oolong Tea
    Quick Add
    Oolong TeaWuyi OolongCacao, Stone Fruit, RoseFrom Huangcun Garden, Fujian, China
    £19.0050g

Wuyi Oolong

Try this if you’re after a tea with a darker and more complex taste. Look for layered flavours of baked fruit and dark chocolate.

Produced in Hangcun Garden by tea maker Zhong Yuanlin and hailing from the prized terroir of the Wuyi Mountains, this is the original style of oolong, picked in the spring and then carefully oxidised to illicit complex fruit and floral notes. The depth and texture of this tea is brought out by a final roasting of the leaves to add to the iconic Wuyi character, with a layer of caramel sweetness and a hint of rock-like minerality in the finish.

Shop Wuyi Oolong

Aged Fuding White Peony

If you’re looking for something complex that will continue to develop over time with meadowy floral notes and a sweet note of honey then give this a try.

 Produced in Shanhugang garden, this tea might seem a bit unusual as it’s 6 years old. But for white teas from Fujian province this is quite normal and in fact can be a prized find. White teas are picked during the spring with the leaves simply withered and dried, meaning that no heat is applied to stop oxidation. Therefore, the tea leaves will continually age slowly over years, possibly many decades, with the flavour deepening and darkening over time. After 6 years you can expect to find some more honeyed notes, with hints of red fruit coming through and thick texture. We think it’s certainly worth trying now but could get even better as time goes by.

Shop Aged Fuding White Peony

  1. Product Tea Oolong Tea Iron Buddha loose leaf Ziplock bag 100g
    Quick Add
    Oolong TeaIron Buddha (Tieguanyin)Orchid, Melon, Vanilla CreamFrom Dazhai Garden, Fujian, China
    £17.0050g