One of China’s most popular green teas is known locally as Longjing tea, pronounce "Long-jing", this tea originates in Longjing Village which lies at the north-west foot of Wengjiashan Mountain in the west part of West Lake near Hangzhou in Zhejiang Province. The best harvests have traditionally been reserved for the wealthy elite and government officials. In this country this tea is better known as Lung Ching or Dragonwell and is a variety of pan-roasted green tea produced mostly by hand and has a well earned reputation for its high quality, earning it China’s status of Gong Cha or Imperial tea. The Gong Cha status was given to this tea during the Qing Dynasty by Chinese emperor Kangxi (China’s longest ruling emperor from 1661 to 1722,).
As is customary with many spices and teas there is a great legend (or two) surrounding Dragonwell tea. According to one legend, Kangxi's (pronounced keng zee) grandson was staying in West Lake during one China’s holidays. As he was visiting the nearby temple he spotted local women plucking tea. He so enjoyed the gracefulness of their rhythmic flow that he wanted to try his hand at plucking as well.
While working side-by-side with the locals he received word that his mother had fallen ill and he needed to return to Beijing. In his haste to leave he absent mindedly placed the handful of tea leaves he had just plucked into his sleeve. Upon visiting his mother, who turned out to not be as ill as he had feared, she noticed the aroma of the leaves he had placed in his sleeves. Using the leaves he brewed a cup of tea for her. The flat shape that Longjing tea is known for today has been modified over the years by hand to honor the appearance of the flattened leaves that the emperor brewed for his mother.
The second legend dates to 250 AD when a Taoist monk believed that there was a dragon that had taken up residence in a spring near Hangchow. It is said that the monk went and visited the well dragon to plead for the dragon’s help in aiding the local farmers who were suffering from a devastating drought. Soon after the skies darkened and unleashed a significant rainfall that saved the farmers. There is an ancient temple that sits next to the spring that is known as Dragon’s Well Monastery. Both the tea and the monastery both pay homage to the same legend.
In the Zhejiang Province heavy mists and fog are very common and not only compensate for insufficient rainfall but also serve to cloak the gardens in a veil of secrecy. The tea is produced by hand following a carefully orchestrated 10 step process that follows ancient time-tested methods. The tea leaves are typically plucked before the Clear Light Festival or before the spring rains have fallen. The highest quality leaves are found on a part of the mountain called Lion’s Peak. We like to get our Dragonwell tea that has been picked just after the start of the season. The plucking of the very first tea leaves are very, very expensive and we don’t feel quite justify the premium price they command.
Dragonwell tea has a very distinctive shape due to pan-firing that has been perfected by Chinese tea masters over 100s of years. The end result is a tea leaf that is smooth and perfectly flattened along the inside vein of the leaf.
An authentic Longiing must come from the Zhejiang province with the most rigid definition restricting the plucking to only come from specific villages and tea farms in the West Lake area. Unfortunately the tea market has a large amount of tea that is sold as Longiing that is actually produced in provinces such as Guangdong, Guizhou, Sichuan and Yunnan. Our Dragonwell is cultivated in the Zhejiang province.
Experienced Longiing tea drinkers are often able to determine if the tea is authentic by aroma and taste. While similar in appearance an inauthentic Longjing has an aroma and flavor that is not as complex and the aftertaste is not as long lasting.
A top quality Dragonwell tea has a sweet, full flavor with nutty undertones, a floral aroma and with a charming dry finish.
The tea liquor is bright and green.
Medium in caffeine. High in antioxidants.
All of our tea bags are made with unbleached tea filter paper. They are approximately 2 1/2" x 2 1/2" and have no strings or tags.
THIS IS THE HIGHEST QUALITY YOU CAN GET! GREAT FLAVOR AND AROMA WILL KNOCK YOUR SOCKS OFF.
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No harmful chemicals have been applied to the land for at least three years.
Farmers and processors pass yearly inspections by an independent certifying agency.
Farmers and processors keep detailed records of operations.
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Information contained in this shop is for educational purposes only.
This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.
This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
please be advised: you should always consult with your doctor before making any changes to your diet!!
INTERNATIONAL CUSTOMERS: Shipping charges vary from country to country so I just picked one of the highest. I will refund any shipping charges above actual charges to your location.
Tea was reportedly discovered in China around 2737 B.C. by The Emperor Chen Nung when a tea leaf fell into his bowl of hot water. This tradition of tea drinking became an integral part of society and was the preferred beverage for all walks of life; from monks and mandarins to the nomadic tribesmen who traded horses for bricks of tea. The Japanese may have transformed tea drinking into a sacred ceremony; however, the Chinese are credited with initiating the time honored ritual of offering a guest a cup of tea as a sign of hospitality.
Scented teas have been around for a long time and are produced according to ancestral recipes. Before the advent of essential oil extracts one of the easiest scents to duplicate was ‘Rose’. The plantations would literally cut the rose blossoms from the plants bordering fields and pathways and sprinkle these into the tea. The result was a delicate but finely flavored tea. Today the practice remains virtually the same, but essential oils are used to speed up the scenting process and freshly cut flowers are added to the tea for visual effects. The result is a delightfully attractive leaf accented with rose petals combined with the refreshing cleansing flavor of roses. The next time a guest drops by, why not offer a truly special cup of hospitality accented with the scent and petals of roses.
Hot tea brewing method: Bring freshly drawn cold water to a rolling boil. Place 1 teaspoon of tea for each cup into the teapot. Pour the boiling water into the teapot. Cover and let steep for 3-7 minutes according to taste (the longer the steeping time the stronger the tea). We recommend adding milk and sugar (if this is to your taste), but if you prefer your tea ‘straight-up’ it is equally acceptable and enjoyable.
Iced tea brewing method: (to make 1 liter/quart): Place 5 teaspoons of tea into a teapot or heat resistant pitcher. Pour 1 1/4 cups of freshly boiled water over the tea. Steep for 5 minutes. Quarter fill a serving pitcher with cold water. Pour the tea into your serving pitcher straining the leaves. Add ice and top up the pitcher with cold water. Garnish and sweeten to taste. [A rule of thumb when preparing fresh brewed iced tea is to double the strength of hot tea since it will be poured over ice and diluted with cold water]
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If you are unhappy for any reason, please contact me (Marty) at 702-370-0035. Since most of our items are classified as food items, we can only do returns if we mistakenly sent the wrong item.
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