Any tea variety is always a reflection of its place of origin. The soil imparts its qualities to the tea plants and the weather influences how the leaves are processed. Local customs and eating habits also play a role.
From the mountainous heart of southern China
As indicated in its name, Anhua Dark Tea comes from Anhua County. To fully understand this fascinating tea, you need to know where Anhua County is located.
As you can see in the map of Southern China above (taken from Baidu maps), Anhua County is found in central Hunan Province, which itself is at the centre of southern China.
Hunan Province is bordered by Hubei Province in the north, Chongqing Municipality and Guizhou Province in the west, Guangxi and Guangzhou provinces in the south, and Jiangxi Province in the east.
Into far away places
Within Hunan Province, Anhua County is located west to the provincial capital Changsha. It is under the administration of Yiyang City, which is why Yiyang is sometimes given as the place of production. However, Anhua County is quite some distance away, to the south and into the mountains, from the urban centre of Yiyang.
Together with Xinhua County to its south, Anhua County is the heart of what used to be called the Meishan region. Anhua Dark Tea is produced in and around this region which has ideal tea growing conditions.
The many shapes and variations of Anhua Dark Tea are the result of the requirements to transport the exquisite local tea leaves out of mountainous Anhua County to far away places.