Welcome to the fascinating world of Dragon Well Tea, or as it’s traditionally known, Longjing Tea. Originating from the scenic Zhejiang province of China, this delightful green tea is celebrated for its exquisite taste and numerous health benefits.
Quotes of tea with You
“Tea was more than boiling water. There were decisions to be made and a frame of mind to develop, no matter how imperceptible.”
― L.L. Barkat, The Novelist
What is Dragon Well Tea?
Dragon’s Well (Dragon Tea) is a soothing Green tea renowned for its fruity flavor. This tea is frequently likened to spinach due to its vegetal undertones, complemented by many other tastes such as chestnut and luscious cream. Predominantly, the finest Dragon’s Well teas originate from Zhejiang’s West Lake (Xihu) area.
Harvesting Dragon’s Well Green tea is an intricate process. The leaves are traditionally handpicked, ensuring uniformity in their selection, particularly for the most superior grades. A tea classified as superior grade has a distinguished uniformity in the leaf’s size and shape, coupled with a softness typically absent in inferior-quality blends.
Post-harvest, the leaves are subjected to a pan-firing process in a large wok, akin to numerous other Chinese teas. This heat treatment halts the leaves’ oxidation, securing their vibrant green color and preserving the nutritional content. Packed with abundant catechins, vitamin C, and amino acids, many dragon well green tea benefits exist.
Now that we’ve discussed Dragonwell tea let’s delve into its rich history.
The History and Origin of Longjing Tea
During the illustrious Qing dynasty, the revered Longjing tea was granted the title of Gong Cha, also known as “imperial tea,” by the renowned Kangxi Emperor. Fascinating stories abound, recounting the escapades of his successor, the Qianlong Emperor, who took a relaxing break to explore the enchanting West Lake, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
As he explored the picturesque landscapes under the majestic Lion Peak Mountain, the emperor stumbled upon the historic Hu Gong Temple. The monks residing in this ancient temple welcomed him with a rejuvenating cup of Longjing tea from a precious collection of 18 tea bushes flourishing in the temple’s vicinity.
The superior quality of the tea, a cherished product of Zhejiang province’s unique terroir, captivated the Qianlong Emperor. He cherished these 18 bushes, bestowing them with a special imperial status.
The Qianlong Emperor’s interest in the ancient Chinese craft of tea harvesting is shown in a fascinating narrative that links Longjing tea with him. When a telegram describing the sickness of his mother, Empress Dowager Chongqing, arrives, the story takes a turn. He moved quickly, concealing the new tea leaves in the sleeve of his royal robe before returning to Beijing.
Upon seeing his mother, she was entranced by the distinctive aroma coming from his sleeve. Thus, the emperor promptly brewed the tea for her, inspiring the characteristic flattened shape of Longjing Tea leaves we recognize today.
Longjing, meaning “dragon well” in a fitting translation, derives its name from a famous well renowned for its abundant water. Following rain showers, the gentle rainfall creates a distinctive design on the surface of the well, resembling the graceful motions of a Chinese dragon, a symbol deeply rooted in Chinese culture representing authority, resilience, and auspicious fortune.
It’s traditionally believed that water from the Dreaming of the Tiger Spring, a well-known spring in Hangzhou and a top-rated tourist attraction, should be used to accentuate the finest flavours of Longjing tea. Even though the spring’s water has evolved, the tea continues to honor its roots, bearing the legendary “Dragon Well” title near the idyllic Longjing village.
The name “Dragon Well” is steeped in legend. As the story goes, a drought-stricken village was saved when a benevolent dragon, believed to reside in a local well, brought forth rain after a monk prayed for its intervention. Since then, the village’s tea has been known as Dragon Well Tea.
Understanding the Unique Characteristics of Long Jing Tea
The Appearance of Longjing tea
Part of Dragon Well Tea’s charm lies in its appearance. When properly brewed, it has a lovely, clear yellow-green colour that’s a sight for sore eyes. The tea leaves are a vibrant green, and their unique flat shape, achieved through careful hand-roasting, sets them apart from other green teas.
The Taste Profile of Dragon Well Tea
Let’s talk about the part we all love – the taste! Dragon Well Tea boasts a rich, full-bodied flavour profile. Its initial impression is refreshingly sweet, followed by complex notes of chestnuts and a hint of vegetal undertones akin to freshly picked spinach. Smoothness in the end leaves a pleasant aftertaste in the tongue.
As we continue our investigation of Long Jing Tea, we’ll learn about its precise manufacturing and cultivation procedures, various health advantages, and brewing advice. Stay tuned, then!
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Types of Dragon Well Tea
The different varieties of Dragon’s Well tea – each with its unique personality and flavors.
Now, three primary types of Dragon’s Well tea are traditionally grown in the West Lake (Xihu) area, along with two other varieties not typically classified as Longjing. They might not be traditional Dragon’s Well teas but still share many flavorful characteristics.
Meijiawu Dragon’s Well Tea
Let’s begin our journey in the mountainous region of Xihu, where over 500 dedicated farmers cultivate an exquisite variety of Dragon’s Well tea known as Mejiawu. The charm of this tea lies in its rich jade-green hue. When brewed, it produces a vibrant pale green liquor and blesses your palate with nutty notes, ending with a delicate floral aftertaste.
Shi Feng Longjing Tea
Next stop is Shi Feng, also known as Lion Peak. This mountain, one of five major ones in this Chinese region, lends its name to another type of Dragon’s Well tea. Thanks to the area’s mild, foggy climate, the teas produced here are exquisite and sought after. This
Longjing tea has the honour of being enjoyed by emperors and is deemed the highest quality Dragon’s Well tea. It brews into a light yellow hue and has a refreshingly crisp flavour.
Tiger Spring Dragon’s Well Tea
Tiger Spring, another renowned green tea from the West Lake region, is cultivated near the rejuvenating Tiger Spring. This is a premium Dragon’s Well tea, the flavour of which remains intact even after several infusions. It’s slightly more mellow than Shi Feng, offering pronounced vegetal notes.
Let’s venture beyond the realm of the typical Dragon’s Well tea. Even though it’s not your typical Dragon’s Well tea, Bai Longjing hails from Anji. Intriguingly, despite being marketed and sold as a green tea, this beverage actually comes from a rare white tea plant. It boasts a robust flavor with subtle grassy notes and offers a more budget-friendly option compared to other Dragon’s Well teas.
Qiantang tea Longjing
Qiantang Longjing is another Dragon’s Well tea variety cultivated outside the West Lake region. It’s largely produced by the popular Chinese brand Shi, or Lion. This is one of the most loved Longjing teas, as it’s quite affordable.
It woos your senses with its nutty aromas and an aftertaste reminiscent of sweet, juicy grapes. The leaves are a radiant emerald green and brew into a rich green colour when steeped in hot water.
After learning about the types of Dragon’s Well Tea, you’ll be curious about its incredible benefits.
The Health Benefits of Dragon Well Green Tea
Beyond its delightful taste and aroma, the best Dragon Well Tea brings many health benefits. Explore its nutritional profile and see how this green tea can improve your well-being.
The Nutritional Content
Antioxidants in Dragon Well Tea
Dragon Well Tea is rich in antioxidants, particularly catechins, which help protect your cells from damage. These bioactive compounds have been linked to various health benefits, from promoting heart health to reducing the risk of certain cancers.
Vitamins and Minerals in Dragon Well Tea
This incredible tea also houses a variety of vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin C and essential minerals like magnesium, zinc, and selenium. It also contains a good amount of fluoride, which can contribute to oral health.
Dragon Well Tea benefits
Benefits of Weight Loss
Dragon Well Tea might be your new best friend if you’re trying to lose weight. Studies suggest that catechins in green tea can help burn fat and boost metabolism, aiding in weight loss3.
Benefits of Heart Health
China dragon might be of use to persons seeking heart health. According to studies, drinking green tea frequently can reduce triglyceride and LDL cholesterol levels, potentially lowering the risk of heart disease.
Boosts Cardiovascular Health
Rich in potent antioxidants, west lake dragon well tea fortifies your cardiovascular health. These antioxidants cleanse your bloodstream, alleviate blocked arteries, and contribute to balanced blood pressure – critical factors promoting heart health.
Enhances Cognitive Function
Swap your coffee for Dragon Well Tea to experience an uplift in cognitive performance. The natural Dragon well tea caffeine gradually releases over 6 to 8 hours, facilitating sustained focus and productivity – essential for peak mental performance.
Promotes Stress Management
Intriguingly, despite its caffeine content, Dragon Well Tea houses an important amino acid, L-Theanine, renowned for its calming effect. This unique blend allows for mindful alertness, contributing to effective stress management and overall mental well-being.
Dragon Well tea caffeine
Dragon Well Tea contains around 75 mg of caffeine per cup, less than your typical coffee but enough to give you a gentle, sustained boost. The caffeine content can vary slightly depending on factors such as the age of the leaves when picked and the steeping time.
This moderate caffeine content, paired with the calming amino acid L-Theanine, makes Dragon Well Tea an excellent choice for a balanced, sustained energy lift without the jitters often associated with coffee.
So, we’ve tackled the caffeine question; next are some valuable tips on how to brew Dragon’s Well Tea perfectly.
Chinese Dragon Tea Brewing Tips
For an enhanced tea experience, I recommend choosing loose-leaf Dragon Well Tea instead of tea bags. Loose leaves provide a higher quality infusion, immersing you completely in the intricate flavors this tea has to offer. When combined with filtered or spring water, you’re in for a delightful experience, as your choice of water will play a significant role in enhancing the tea’s authentic taste.
The technique of brewing green tea, specifically Dragon Well Tea, differs from brewing black or oolong tea. The latter teas can withstand higher temperatures, but for Dragon Well Tea, you want your water to be between 170 and 180 degrees Fahrenheit (76 to 82 degrees Celsius).
A temperature-controlled tea kettle is a boon, but if you don’t, let the water cool for 2 minutes post-boiling before commencing the steeping process.
Now, onto the brewing steps:
- Begin with your chosen tea vessel, a gaiwan or a traditional teacup. Preheat it with hot water, swish the water around and discard.
- Next, put 1 teaspoon of Dragon Well loose tea into a tea strainer and place it in the gaiwan.
- Pour water, heated to around 175 degrees Fahrenheit, into the teacup.
- Let the magic happen as the tea leaves steep for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Lastly, remove the tea leaves and relish the flavor of your freshly brewed Dragon Well Tea!
The bonus is that Dragon Well Tea leaves can be re-infused 3 to 5 times, extending the steeping time by 30 seconds.
Having mastered the brewing technique, you must wonder where to buy Dragon Well Tea to start your tea journey.
Tips for Properly Storing Longjing Tea
To preserve Dragon Well Tea’s delicate flavors and aromas, store it in an airtight container away from excessive light, heat, and moisture. Find a cool, dark cupboard or pantry as an ideal spot, ensuring the tea remains shielded from external factors that can compromise its quality.
Dragon Well Tea, when stored correctly, can maintain its freshness and flavour for up to a year. However, for the best taste experience, consuming it within six months of purchase is advisable. As time passes, the flavours may gradually diminish, so it’s recommended to replenish your supply periodically.
Dragon well tea where to buy
If you’re looking to get your hands on Dragon Well Tea, there are several places I can recommend.
Speciality tea shops or high-quality grocery stores often stock this exquisite green tea.
Online marketplaces such as Amazon and eBay, or tea-specific e-stores like Adagio Teas, Teavivre, and Yunnan Sourcing also offer a variety of Dragon Well Teas, often delivered worldwide.
Always pay attention to reviews and product descriptions to ensure you’re getting authentic Dragon Well Tea. Remember to check for ‘Xihu’ or ‘West Lake’ in the description, which signifies the top-grade Dragon Well Tea.
With a strong presence in the tea world thanks to its superb flavor, extensive cultural heritage, and advantageous health properties. It is a genuine jewel in tea because of its distinctive qualities, artisanal manufacture, and historical significance.
If you have yet to experience Dragon Well Tea, it’s time to embark on a journey of taste and tradition. This revered green tea offers a harmonious blend of flavors, health benefits, and cultural significance, making it a must-try for tea lovers worldwide.
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What is Dragon Well tea good for?
The various health advantages of dragon well tea, which is rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and amino acids, are well recognized. It is a great beverage option for health-conscious people since it may help with weight loss, heart health, mental clarity, and general wellness.
Why is Longjing Tea so expensive?
Longjing Tea is often pricier due to its superior quality, labor-intensive harvesting process, and its prestigious status as one of China’s Famous Teas. It is handpicked and hand-roasted, demanding a meticulous process that justifies its cost. Also, the finest Dragon Well tea comes from the Xihu region, which has limited production, leading to higher prices.
What is the most expensive tea in Asia?
While many types of tea in Asia can fetch high prices, the title of the most expensive often goes to Da Hong Pao, a rare and high-quality oolong tea from the Wuyi Mountains in China. Like Dragon Well tea, it is valued for its unique flavor profile and limited availability.
What is the number 1 tea brand in China?
One of the top tea brands in China is TenFu’s Tea, known for offering a diverse range of high-quality teas, including Dragon Well tea. However, it’s important to remember that tea preference can be subjective and vary depending on personal taste and regional traditions.
Where does Long Jing Tea come from?
Dragon Well tea originates from around the West Lake, or Xihu, in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province of China. The local climate, soil, and traditional cultivation practices contribute to the unique characteristics of this world-renowned green tea.
How do you drink Dragon Well tea?
Dragon Well tea is best enjoyed hot, brewed with water between 170 and 180 degrees Fahrenheit. The tea leaves are steeped for 2-3 minutes before being removed. The delicate, aromatic tea can be enjoyed without additives, but some may prefer adding a hint of sweetener.
What is the most expensive Chinese tea?
The most expensive Chinese tea title often goes to Da Hong Pao, a type of oolong tea. However, premium Dragon Well teas, specifically the Shi Feng Longjing variety, are also among the most expensive due to their exceptional quality and limited availability.
Can Dragon Well tea be enjoyed iced?
Absolutely! While Dragon Well Tea is traditionally consumed hot, it can also be brewed and chilled to create a refreshing iced tea. Simply brew the tea as usual, let it cool, and pour it over ice. You can also add lemon slices or a taste of honey for flavor.
Does Dragon Well tea have a specific brewing time?
Dragon Well Tea should generally be steeped for 2 to 3 minutes for optimal taste. However, you can adjust the steeping time to your preference. If you prefer a lighter flavor, you can reduce the steeping time, while a longer steeping time can result in a stronger infusion.
Is Dragon Well tea suitable for multiple infusions?
Yes, Dragon Well Tea leaves can be infused multiple times. You can typically brew Dragon Well Tea leaves 3 to 5 times, gradually increasing the steeping time with each infusion to extract different layers of flavor.
Can Dragon Well tea be stored for a long time?
To maintain its freshness and flavor, it is recommended to consume Dragon Well Tea within a year of purchase. Proper storage in an airtight container, away from excessive light, heat, and moisture, will help preserve its quality.
Can I add milk to Dragon Well tea?
Adding milk to Dragon Well Tea is unique, as it is traditionally enjoyed without additives. However, personal preferences may vary, and if you prefer a creamier taste, you can experiment with adding a splash of milk or a non-dairy alternative.
Can I use Dragon Well tea for cooking or baking?
Certainly! Dragon Well Tea can add a unique flavor and aroma to various culinary creations. You can use it to infuse broths, create tea-infused desserts, or even incorporate it into marinades for a delightful twist in your culinary adventures.
I’m Shanna, creator of Spiritea Drinks. I’m all about teaching people to grow their own food, tea, cook what they harvest, and eat with the seasons.