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Master Luo’s West Lake Long Jing – No.43 Cultivar


A Long Jing (Dragonwell) green tea grown, hand-picked and handmade in Meijiawu, one of the famous areas within the tiny 1km by 5km Xi Hu (West Lake) area famous for Long Jing production. This tea has been grown and hand-fired by Master Luo, three time winner of the Long Jing Firing King title.

This tea is made from Master Luo’s No. 43 cultivar bushes, which comprises four fifths of his total production. No. 43 is now the dominant tea cultivar in Xi Hu, surpassing the traditional cultivars due to its early budding and tolerance to cold weather. Because the price of Long Jing falls almost exponentially as the season goes on, it makes a lot of financial sense for farmers to grow No. 43 as it gives them over a week extra to pick premium tea before the start of Qingming festival in early April.

Unlike last year when unusual weather led to some of the 2018 tea feeling a little thinner in texture than normal, this year we have no reservations. However increasing wholesale prices for Xihu Old Tree Long Jing in China (£1000 per jin – 500g – for early old tree teas) has meant that we have had to increase our prices for the 2019 crop.

This tea was fired on the week before Qingming festival. The first thing to notice about the tea is its complete lack of astringency or bite, even when made with off-boiling water. While the wet leaf is aromatic with notes of citrus, almonds and white fruit, the impression of taste is that of silken flavoured water, that coats the mouth and throat with sweetness. Whether or not you prefer this earlier tea to the less grand later teas is entirely a matter of taste, but if you love green tea for its lightness and purity then this is one of our best green teas of the year – an exceptional early-fired example of China’s greatest green tea by one of the country’s most famous tea makers.

Master Luo Meijiawu Village, Hangzhou, China

5 acres

Camellia Sinensis Sinensis, Da Zhong Pin (Jiu Keng Group) cultivar, 150-200 year old trees. Pan-fired. Harvested and fired late-March 2019

90°C, 3-4g per 150ml. 4 infusions.

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