White Tea comes from the tea plant called “Camellia sinensis.”
It has a light, sweet, taste, and none of the green, “grassy” taste that green teas do. When when brewed up, the tea will have either a pale yellow or pale orange or amber colour.
The leaves are harvested when they are just starting to open and are still inside their buds. The buds are covered in fine silvery-white hair, which give their colour to the unbrewed product.
The leaves are not fermented, as they are for many other kinds of tea. They are steamed without rolling them first, then dried, then dried in an oven.
White Tea is made in China (Fujian, Hunan and Guangxi Provinces), Japan, and in the Darjeeling area of India. There are many brands.
All are expensive.
Use water that is somewhat below the boiling point – 165 F (74 C), or, when bubbles just start to form on the bottom of the water. Use 2 teaspoons of the tea leaves per 250 ml / 8 oz of hot water, and allow to steep for 6 minutes for first batch.
You can get at least 3 batches out of one round of leaves, adding a few minutes to each successive steep.
In British parlance, white tea means “black tea with milk added.”