Organic Dragon Well Green Tea from Canton Tea Co.

organic_long_jing_dragon_wellTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  Canton Tea Co.

Tea Description:

This delicious organic Dragon Well is grown in the hills of Zhejiang Province near Long Jing, the village where this famous tea originated. The green tea leaves are picked young and taken back to the village where the skilled tea masters use their bare hands to press them flat in a hot, dry wok in the traditional way. This arrests the oxidation process and ensures the liquor carries the notes of freshly cut grass, rounded off by a soft, nutty flavour.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I love a really good Dragon Well – or Long Jing Green Tea – and this Organic Dragon Well Green Tea from Canton Tea Co. is REALLY good.

Whenever spring approaches, one of the questions that’s often asked among tea drinkers is ‘where are you getting this year’s Dragon Well?  And while there are many fine purveyors of exceptional Dragon Well teas, this Organic Dragon Well from Canton is one of the better Dragon Well teas that I’ve tried and I’ve tried quite a few.  Only a few of them are teas that I can recall from memory as being really good – this would be one of those ‘really good’ Dragon Well teas that I’ll remember!

It’s so sweet, lightly grassy/vegetative with hints of butter.  The buttery notes give the somewhat grassy taste more of a vegetable type of flavor, evoking thoughts of freshly steamed green beans that have been lightly drizzled with melted butter.  It has a pleasantly creamy texture.  There’s very little astringency (next to no astringency!) and no bitterness.

And it’s a tea that keeps on steeping!  I got three very flavorful infusions out of one measurement of leaves!  So get your mileage out of this tea and take it for a couple of infusions!

I’ve often heard that the proper way to drink a Dragon Well is in a tall glass with the leaves sitting in the bottom of the glass and as you drink the liquid, keep adding more water – and you drink it like this all day long.  Now, I’ve never tried my Dragon Well like this.  The truth is that my first experience with Dragon Well wasn’t a positive experience.

I don’t know if that bad experience with the Dragon Well was because at the time I was a bit of a novice when it comes to brewing green teas in general and the water I used was too hot, or if it was possibly because the Dragon Well that I had at the time was of a lesser quality, all I know is that I did not like it!

And after that experience, I was very hesitant to try another Dragon Well.  Until I finally did and I realized, “HEY!  I like this!”  That realization could have been due to the fact that I knew better ways to brew green teas or again, it could have been the quality.  But, I’m more inclined to believe that it had more to do with the fact that I knew how to steep a green tea at that point.

But because of that first experience, I’m hesitant to try my Dragon Well teas a different way.  I found the way I enjoy them, so why fix it if it ain’t broken, right?

Back to THIS Dragon Well – this is one I’d suggest trying.  This could be your new Dragon Well!

First Flush Long Jing Green Tea from Teasenz

longjing_greenteaTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  Teasenz

Tea Description:

A first flush Longjing tea picked in early spring. An exceptional quality rarely seen outside of China.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

Nice!  This is an exceptionally fresh-tasting Longjing!  I’m not surprised, of course, because I can’t recall being disappointed by any of the teas that I’ve tried thus far from Teasenz!  This company is one that is committed to offering the very finest (and freshest!) teas.  I like that in a tea company.

And I’m finding myself really appreciating the freshness and flavor of this first flush Long Jing (aka Dragon Well).  It’s sweet and smooth and delicious.  Not a trace of bitterness and a very low astringency level.

This Dragon Well has a light vegetal tone and tastes more of sweet butter with nutty tones than it tastes grassy or vegetative.  I also taste notes of fruit and flower in the distance.

The sip starts out sweet, reminiscent of the nutty flavor you might experience with a browned butter.  The nutty flavor has a light, toasted taste to it.  About mid-sip, I start to pick up on hints of fruit and very delicate whispers of flower in the distance. More sweetness!  The sip ends smooth with a slight dry sensation – a very, very slight dry astringency here.  If I wasn’t focused in on the sip and really concentrating on everything I’m picking up on … this astringency is so low that it would have escaped my notice.

I love how this tea washes the palate with sweetness with every sip.  It’s so enjoyable.  It is more sweet than it is savory or brothy, this isn’t one of those “nourishing” type of teas, this is one to drink for the sheer celebration of a superbly beautiful and satisfyingly sweet green tea.

Another AMAZING tea from Teasenz!

Organic Superfine Dragon Well Long Jing Green Tea from Teavivre

LongJingTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  Teavivre

Tea Description:

This Organic Dragon Well Long Jing tea origins in organic tea base of Tianmu Mountain in Lin’an, Hangzhou. The organic tea base of Tianmu Mountain, has passed the organic certification of European, USA and Japan, is a significant base of planting organic dragon well and green tea. This dragon well long jing tea persists a high level in picking and producing while meeting the standard of organic certification. The tea should be picked as one bud and two leaves or three leaves in order to reach the standard. Tea workers also have excellent skills, which help keep the natural features of fresh tea leaves. Combined with the advantages of organic tea and high grade tea, this dragon well long jing tea is suitable for tea lovers of organic tea as well as dragon well green tea.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I previously reviewed Teavivre’s Spring 2014 She Qian Dragon Well and I absolutely LOVED it.  It would seem that the She Qian is sold out now, so if you’re looking for an alternative, this Organic Superfine Dragon Well from Teavivre is an excellent choice.

The flavor is sweet and vegetal, with notes of butter and a nutty taste in the background.  The nutty flavor is slightly “toasty,” like fresh, roasted chestnuts.  I like the way the butter and the nutty flavors unite to offer a slight creaminess to the flavor.  It’s not a heavy cream taste, but just a little something to contrast with the mild vegetative flavor.

The texture of the cup is light and refreshing.  With every sip, my palate feels clean and energized but i don’t feel overstimulated with this drink.  It’s a calm, peaceful sort of beverage to sip, but at the same time, I can feel it “renew” me.  It’s not a drink that feels “weighty” on the palate, nor does it feel “brothy” or creamy.  It’s smooth and it has a light richness to the flavor, but, it isn’t a real overbearing texture on the tongue.

And what’s great about this Dragon Well from Teavivre – besides the fact that it tastes awesome and it’s organic! – is that it’s a tea that keeps on going.  You can infuse it several times with no loss of flavor.  In fact, it’s well worth the effort to infuse this at least two or three times because I find that the later infusions are more flavorful than the first cup.

If you’re looking for your Dragon Well tea source for this year, you can’t go wrong with Teavivre.  This is true of any tea that they offer – everything that I’ve tried from them has been top notch.

Organic Long Jing #03 from Steepster

Long JingTea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  Steepster Select

Tea Description:

Our Long Jing (or Dragon Well) is produced by one of the most respected organic growers in Anhui.

Read other Steepster thoughts on this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I’ve tasted and reviewed a lot of Long Jing (also known as Dragon Well) green teas over the years.  And while many of those that I’ve tried taste very similar to others, every once in a while I’ll taste one that sort of “stands out” among the others that I’ve sampled.  This Organic Long Jing #03 from Steepster (from my January Steepster Select box!) is one of those Dragon Well teas that stands out.

And what makes me say that?  Well, for one thing, just a few moments ago – after allowing the tea to cool slightly – I took a sip and I lightly slapped my lips and murmured “mmm!”  Now … I do that from time to time when I taste teas.  But, I can’t recall the last time I did that after taking a sip of a Dragon Well.

Like I said, many of my Dragon Well memories sort of melt into one another, like one big Long Jing conglomerate.  That doesn’t mean that I didn’t enjoy those other Long Jing/Dragon Well teas – because I did.  I enjoyed them immensely.  However, as I said in the previous paragraph, every once in a while one just stands out.

What I’m trying to say, very simply, is this:  this Long Jing ROCKS!

This is sweet and nutty, and there is a roasted note to it that reminds me of sweet, toasted chestnuts.  One of the things I look forward to when the holidays approach is roasting some chestnuts over my roaring fireplace, and eating the shelled chestnuts while they’re still warm.  Yum!

Well, that lip-smacking “mmm” moment I mentioned a while ago was from the warm, creamy chestnut taste that I get from this tea.  The tasting notes from Steepster state:

Nutty and vegetal with hints of baked earth.

And yeah, I’m getting that “baked earth” sort of flavor, as well as the vegetative tones that are reminiscent of lightly buttered lima beans.  But it’s the nutty flavors of this tea that really does for me.  So sweet and delicious.

A really, REALLY good Long Jing!

Organic Nonpareil Ming Qian Dragon Well Long Jing Green Tea from Teavivre


Tea Information:

Leaf Type:  Green

Where to Buy:  Teavivre

Tea Description:

The fresh Organic Nonpareil Ming Qian Dragon Well Long Jing Tea provided by Teavivre is picked before Tomb-Sweeping Day, an important solar term in Chinese agriculture. Ming Qian (Pre-ming) tea is seldom damaged by insects. Its buds and leaves are delicate and tender. With a mellow taste, it is emerald green in color and quite beautiful in appearance. Since the weather is relatively cold before Tomb-Sweeping Day, the number of fresh buds is limited and they grow slow. Therefore, a few leaves can meet the picking standard. Compared with those picked after Tomb-Sweeping Day, Ming Qian (Pre-ming) tea is of top grade.

Learn more about this tea here.

Taster’s Review:

I’ve said this before, but it bears repeating:  Teavivre is one of my favorite tea companies.  The reason is quite simple.  They offer some of the very best teas available, and it is obvious to me that this is a company that cares about the teas that they sell.  This is evident in their careful packaging that protects the tea quality and integrity of the tea.  This is evident in their responsive customer service.  More than that … this is evident in the FLAVOR of the tea itself.

As this Organic Nonpareil Ming Qian Dragon Well Long Jing Green Tea from Teavivre brewed, I could smell the strong, fresh vegetative aroma.  The scent filled the kitchen, smelling of steamed vegetables … it smelled delicious!

The flavor matches the fragrance with its strong, vegetative overtone.  It is pleasantly sweet but with a nice contrasting savory tone that is almost like salt.  I taste nutty notes, reminiscent of a freshly roasted chestnut:  creamy and sweet, with hints of butter.

The texture is smooth and silky, and there is very little astringency to this.  It is not bitter (although I wouldn’t recommend steeping it in water too hot or for too long a time.  I recommend a temperature of 175ºF and a brew time of 1 – 1 1/2 minutes for the first infusion, and increasing the brew time by 30 seconds for each subsequent infusion.)

I like that this tea holds up well through multiple infusions too.  This is definitely a tea that you want to spend some time with … take your time and savor it!  It will submit several very flavorful infusions that will make it well worth your efforts!