A few weeks ago I mentioned a generous tea gift given to me by my brother and sister in law. While vacationing China, they visited a tea plantation in Hangzhou. I am envious of their tour! They learned about how the tea was grown and processed.
They brought back a beautiful Dragon Well tea called the Emperor's tea. I decided to try brewing this tea in a gaiwan, as it seemed appropriate. I'm a novice at this method of preparation, but why not get some practice!
This tea has distinctive smooth, flat leaves which are a result of the pan-firing process. I wished I was there to see the leaves take shape! It must be an interesting process to watch.
My first couple of infusions smelled vegetal and toasty. The flavor was smooth and delicate with a strong roasted asparagus flavor. A delicate floral note was in the background. My third infusion was much more buttery, and still retained a hint of the roasted asparagus.
I was also given dried orange peel and hawthorne to add to the tea. I want to taste the tea a few times without anything added to it. When I'm feeling more adventurous I will try the added ingredients. Apparently I will be healthier for it as the brew is supposed to reduce cholesterol.
This is such a lovely tea. It is a special addition to my daily rotation. I'm so grateful for the gift!