Sunday, July 04, 2010
Longjing Tea Plantation
One of the stops of my trip to Hangzhou was the Longjing Tea Plantation at Mei Jia Wu (梅家坞). I was told that Longjing is a kind of green tea that is only produced near West Lake, Hangzhou.
Actually, I do not think I have stepped into a tea plantation. However, I did learn a bit more about tea appreciation and Longjing Green Tea when I was at Mei Jia Wu. I learnt that the harvesting of tea leaves is an art itself. Choosing the good time, the appropriate season and the right kind of leaves to harvest are all critical in determining the taste of the eventual green tea.
We also witnessed a demonstration of the pan frying of the Longjing tea leaves. The pan frying of tea leaves is done by hand and it takes a lot of skills to do it well. I read that pan frying is intended to stop the fermentation process.
We had the pleasure to appreciate Longjing tea. Longjing tea has a delicate and fragrant aroma, light and mellow taste. We were told that when we brew Longjing tea, the temperature of the water should not be more than 90 degrees Celsius. Tea-drinking itself is an art. The choice of tea-wares, water, location of drinking the tea and the type of company that one has, all contribute to the overall tea-drinking experience. We were also given a demonstration of how Longjing tea has properties of an anti-oxidant.
Overall, the Longjing Tea Plantation was an educational stop-over with scenic views.