Lung Ching is to Chinese green teas what French Champagne is to sparkling wines: the standard against which all others are measured. With almost no tips, it has the classic Chinese green tea qualities of steamed bok choy and roasted nuts.
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||Lung Ching means "Dragon Well", which refers to an old well halfway up a hill outside of Hangzhou in Zhejiang province, where the tea was originally grown. This tea comes from a village the other side of the hill, called. For the last few years, Mr. Zhao has made our Lung Ching. His house and tea factory is up the hill, with hills of tea plants just outside.
We like to get our Lung Ching from tea just after the start of the season. The first teas are very, very expensive and often the tea does not match the price. This year we choose a tea that had great body and lovely sweetness, indicative of great levels of amino acids.
||The flat, narrow leaf is stiff and smooth with a spear-like shape about an inch long. Though it looks like a single flat needle, the unit actually comprises two leaves and a bud joined at the stem.
||Steamed bok choy and toasted walnuts, with top notes of sweet spring grass.
||Medium light. The tea is loaded with amino acids that give sweetness and body.
||The delicious meatiness of roasted eggplant with similar steamed bok choy and toasted walnut flavors.
||2 to 3 minutes