Review of Premium Grade Dragon Well Green Tea (Long Jing)

8 of 105 of 54 of 583 of 100
ExcellentExcellentGood Value

This is the lowest-priced of the dragon well teas I've tried yet from TeaVivre, and it's still top-notch, although slightly less complex.

As soon as I opened the package, I was met with a wonderful aroma of fresh green tea, with a strong nutty quality. The leaf is beautiful: long, intact, vibrant yellow-green, and dusty.

The leaf stretches very far...very little leaf is needed to produce a flavorful cup. After experimenting, I decided I liked using a lot less leaf than I normally do for dragon well, maybe about 2/3rds what I normally would use.

Aroma is mellow and nutty, homey tasting, more warming than typical for a green tea. Flavor is bold, with a strong umami (savory) quality, considerable sweetness, and a hint of both sourness and bitterness. Light astringency produces a cup that is light-bodied but never thin.

I preferred steeping for 2 minutes; I tried a longer steep (TeaVivre recommends up to 6 minutes) and the results were good, but this left less flavor for subsequent cups. TeaVivre said to brew at 185F...normally I find Dragon Well is tolerant of even higher brewing temperatures, but for this one I actually liked to go lower. The flavor is very bold and I find a metallic quality comes out if the temperature is too hot.

Easily resteeps, especially if the first steep is shorter, but I found I enjoyed the subsequent steeps slightly less...they are still aromatic, and still flavorful, but I find they lose the warming quality of the first cup.

I enjoyed this's several steps up in quality (and price) from the "everday" Foojoy Long Jing I drink in quantity. It lacks the complexity of the higher-priced TeaVivre offerings though, two of which are only a few dollars more for 100 grams (one of which is over twice the price). I will say though that I think the leaf stretches farther for this tea, so the difference in price is actually bigger than is suggested by price per weight alone.

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