Monday, October 3, 2011

Longjing Tea 龙井

It has been too long since I visited Hangzhou, China. Whenever I miss this place, I would help myself to a warm and comforting brew of  Longjing tea "龙井". This chestnutty, fragrant, green tea is Hangzhou's gift to the world. I bet the gods must be thirsty now!
In their dried form, Longjing tea leaves are flat and broad, almost like sabre blades . They have a fresh and slightly nutty and seductive waft to them. It's absolute pleasure to own a "piece" of Hang Zhou in this way. 
To begin, I brought water to a boil and warmed my three-piece cup set also known as a Gaibei. Next, I discard the water and my warm cup is ready for the first infusion. Add just enough tea leaves to cover the base of the cup and steadily add boiling water to the leaves. Replace the lid and let the infusion do its magic as the leaves unfold and release warm and strong scents reminiscent of the lush tea plantations on the hillsides of scenic Hangzhou. For a brief second, my camera lens was slightly fogged up as a result. The sight and smell of this mini tea ceremony are simply divine.
Good tea serves also as a very effective thirst quencher. I have no doubts about this one. Nutty, fresh and long lasting fragrant notes sum it up for me!

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