Lu An Gua Pian, is the Chinese name for Emerald Petals Green Tea. Lu An is the region in the Dabie Mountains of the Western Anhui province of China, where the leaves are grown. Gua Pian refers to the term melon seeds in Chinese. The name describes the wet tea leaf’s shape thought to resemble melon seeds and so Lu An Gua Pian is also commonly called “Lu An Melon Seeds.” The tea later adapted to the name “Emerald Petals” green tea because of its beautiful look.
This green tea is comprised entirely of delicate, flat, vibrant, emerald green leaves. Unlike most teas, it is picked and processed using only the leaf. The buds and stems are carefully removed and only the first three leaves on each branch are used.
The dried leaves are long and narrow and when brewed, yield a lovely and refreshing floral aroma with a light green color, subtler than its exquisite emerald green leaves.
Emerald Petals green tea is an extremely smooth beverage, with a sweet and silky taste that slowly fills your mouth; accompanied by a long, sweet floral finish. Its popularity dates back to the Tang Dynasty and is known as one of the ten…
The history of the
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You’d never guess that the creation of teabags was actually a mistake!
In 1908, Thomas Sullivan, a tea importer, decided that in order to cut costs, he would send loose tea leaves to…
“Gaiwan” refers to a popular type of covered teacup, which has been used in China since the Ming Dynasty, during the mid-1300s. Gaiwans are elegant and simple, often made from porcelain, and consist of a saucer, bowl and lid. Since gainwans are covered teacups, they can be used in place of a teapot and are excellent to use when brewing teas with delicate aromas and flavors like white, green or oolong teas.
The process to brew tea with a gaiwan is quite simple with a few easy steps to follow:
- Bring your water to a boil.
- Pour water into the gaiwan teacup.
- Measure your tea. The amount of tea that you will add will depend on the size of your gaiwan teacup and the type of tea that you are brewing.
- Close the gaiwan, place on the saucer and gently shake it; then allow the tea to steep. The amount of time that you allow your tea to brew will depend on the type of tea that you choose and most teas advise will advise you of the correct brewing time. For example, many green teas brew for 2-3 minutes. This…
Mao Jian is a popular type of green tea that is from the southeast interior Anhui Province of China. It is grown near Huangshan, or Yellow Mountain, an area rich in its variety of green teas.
The best Mao Jian is harvested in early spring. Unlike some teas, when picking Mao Jian only the new tea buds and the leaf nearest to the bud are picked. After being picked, these Chinese tea leaves are gently pan-fried to stop the oxidation process from occurring.
The tea consists of beautiful, dark green, long, curled leaves with silvery tips, which have been firmly rolled and are pointed on both ends. It is well known and treasured for its distinctive, refreshing taste and pleasant aroma and when brewed, it yields a beautiful golden color with a subtle tint of green. Its fragrance is clean and vegetal and its taste is sweet and subtle.
Like other green teas, Mao Jian is caffeinated and contains the same well-known anti-oxidants. The tea’s creamy texture and delicious taste is calming and it is the perfect tea for every day drinking.
Brewing Mao Jian…
Bi Luo Chun is a type of green tea that comes from the mountains of Dongting in the Suzhou province of China. Bi Luo Chun, also known as Pi Lo Chun, is grown amongst apricot, pear, plum and peach trees in a seemingly utopian climate. Because of this, the tea leaves absorb the fruit blossoms’ lovely scent.
The youngest leaves and buds are harvested in the spring with the unopened bud and one leaf. Once harvested, the fine, tender buds are processed entirely by hand. The three-step process includes picking, sorting and roasting.
1) Picking: The tea is only harvested once a year, in the spring-time, as early as March. The picking step is somewhat tedious since each picking requires both one unopened bud and one leaf.
2) Sorting: The leaves are then sorted by hand, one by one. This step helps to remove any low-quality leaves. Bi Luo Chun should consist solely of young tea buds and leaves and nothing more.
3) Roasting: The last stage is an approximately 15 minute roasting process, which kills enzymes and…
Oolong is a full-bodied tea that is derived from China and Taiwan and is well-known for its many health benefits. The tea is made from large leaves, which are picked, allowed to wither and then dried before the semi-fermentation process begins. Since oolong tea is semi-fermented, it combines the best characteristics found in both black and green teas. It has a rich flavor and is known for its floral aftertaste and soothing aroma.
The full-bodied tea is a great source of natural anti-oxidants and also contains some essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B2, C and E, zinc, selenium and florin. With so many nutrients packed into oolong tea, it’s no surprise that it has a wide range of health benefits. From lowering cholesterol levels and the risk of heart disease to promoting weight loss, this tea encourages the healthy functioning of the digestive cycle, circulatory, and immune systems.
Oolong tea is primarily manufactured in the Fujian region of China and around Doi Tung Mountain in Taiwan.
Chinese oolong is known to have very distinctive taste, which results from a longer fermentation process than oolong…
Pu-erh tea is a delicacy from the Yunnan province in China, which is said to lower cholesterol levels in the blood stream and effectively rid the body of toxins helping to aid indigestion. Another variation of Pu-erh tea is the Pu-erh Tea Cake from the same province of China. It is also known as uncooked pu-erh tea pie because of the way that it is produced and packaged. Pu-erh Tea Cake has a unique production process.
First, the tea leaves are allowed to naturally wither indoors. This process takes a day or two and allows any moisture to escape from the freshly picked tea leaves. The leaves are then put through the process of known as “Sha Qing,” which means kill the green. The purpose of Sha Qing is reduce fermentation through an air drying machine that is used to soften them. Sha Qing can also be done manually by pan frying the tea leaves over a wok.
The next step to Pu-erh Tea Cake is rolling. After the air drying process, the leaves must cool briefly before they are rolled and broken. This is…
First introduced in England in 1800 by Josiah Spode, bone china is a type of fine china made from a mix of clay and bone ash. Its original formula contained 6 parts of bone ash, 4 parts of china stone, and 3.5 parts of china clay, also known as Kaolinite.
The differential between bone china and porcelain is primarily the mix of bone ash in its formula. Because of it, bone china is stronger than regular porcelain and its beautiful ivory-white is far more translucent than basic porcelain, allowing light to pass through it. Its ivory-white appearance is actually attributed to the bone ash.
Bone china grew as a popular alternative to traditional porcelain china in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries because although it was delicate and beautiful, it was very strong. Common items made from bone china included teapots, vases and tableware.
An additional contributing factor to bone china’s growth in popularity is from its sturdy formula being less likely to be lost in fire since it does not contain any glass. Additionally, the firing temperature for bone china is much lower than porcelain so potters could easily…
Afternoon tea is a long-time British tradition that is served with a small snack and a hot cup of the best English afternoon tea. It is known to have popularized in the 19th century by the Duchess of Bedford, Anna Maria, who complained of having a “sinking feeling” around 4PM in the afternoon. Since, at the time, it was common to only have two meals a day, the Duchess’ solution was to have an afternoon tea time accompanied by a small snack to reenergize her spirit. In time, the Duchess shared her new practice with friends by holding daily “tea time” at the Belvoir Castle and due to its great success; she continued this tradition when she returned to London. The refreshing practice soon spread across Britain and tea time became a formal occasion. Some of the most impressive tea receptions would host as many as 200 guests.
Originally during tea time, guests were served light snacks such bread and butter, but soon complimenting tea menus were developed. A traditional afternoon tea menu included a selection of small, cut up, “finger” sandwiches, freshly baked scones with creams and…
Pu-erh (or Puerh), also known as Polee, is a tea from the Yunnan province in the southwest of China. It is produced from the leaves and stems of the Camellia sinensis plant, which is the same plant that produces green, oolong and black teas. The tea is dark in color and has reddish black leaves that make it a heavy, thick tea with a strong, earthy aroma.
Different from other teas, pu-erh tea is post-fermented, this means it is both fermented and then goes through an aging process under high humidity. Pu-erh tea is either raw or ripened. Raw pu-erh, also known as green, goes through sun fixation, rolling and sun drying. Ripened pu-erh, or dark, goes through sun fixation, rolling, Wo Dui (piling, dampening and mixing the tea to ensure even fermentation) and sun drying. Added processes include both types being compressed or shaped, and aged.
Pu-erh tea is compressed/shaped in a variety of ways. One of these ways is known as toucha, which is compressed Yunnan maocha green tea. In its compressed state, it can further age as it is well known that the longer pu-erh…