|This article does not cite any references or sources. (January 2011)|
|Other names:||Monkey Tea, Taiping Hou Kui|
|Origin:||Anhui Province, China|
|Quick description:||Baked green tea|
Taiping houkui (Chinese: 太平猴魁; pinyin: tàipíng hóukuí lit. "peaceful monkey leader") tea is grown at the foot of Huangshan (黄山) in Taiping County, Anhui. The tea has been produced since the beginning of the 20th century and is produced around the small village of Hou Keng (猴坑). It won the "King of Tea" award in China Tea Exhibition 2004 and is sometimes listed as a China Famous Tea.
The best Tai Ping Hou Kui is grown in the villages of Houkeng, Hougang and Yanjiachun. Teas produced in the surrounding areas are called by the same name, but cost much less.
It's renowned for its "two knives and one pole": two straight leaves clasping the enormous bud with white hairs. The oven-made leaves are deep green in color with red veins underneath.
The tea shoots can be as long as 15 centimeters. They are plucked from the Shi Da Cha, a large leaf-variety found only in Anhui Province. Falsification is rampant. Factories can produce symmetrical looking Hou Kui tea that looks even better than the authentic handmade variety.