In several ways, Bi Luo Chun or Green Snail Spring embodies much of what is wonderful about the spring tea harvest in China. Perhaps no spring green tea cups to the wonderful flavors of the spring harvest as well as this one. Ours is a first-grade leaf harvested in the first pluck of the season before the Qing Ming holiday in early April. Timing of the harvest is critical as prized bud sets must be plucked at just the right time. The plucked leaves are small and delicate, as a result handling and processing can be very challenging. Lot was made in April 2019.
A period of constant rain followed by warmer weather in southeastern China brought a wide selection of early-pick greens into the marketplace. In a period of days, there is an increasing number of whiter side or predominately budset BLCs offered. The lot we selected is a blend of the two styles and offers what we think makes this tea special. The leaves are small, elegant in classic spiral shapes. The lot offers a balanced mix of light-green leaf and soft-white bud. Aroma is well-balanced. In tasting, it was clear this lot held that precious moment of spring when it is plucked and processed, cupping to a rich, vegetal almost broth-like. It is one of the true "vegetal" tasting Chinese greens. It steeps to a cloudy cup color, yet its liquor taste is clean. Harvested in April 2019. Lot #1-9.
This lot was picked pre-Qing Ming. It has a very traditional look - small leaf, mostly white buds, vegetal and clean in taste, offering thirst quenching, sweet notes.
The leaves are tender and complex offering a range of flavors from asparagus to hints of chestnut. We notice some flavor of peach. The liquor is soft and silky. Taste is thirst quenching and clean.
Use 3 grams for 8-12 ounces of water at a lower temperature, as the leaves are delicate. A temp of 175-195 F is ideal. Steep for 2 minutes and taste. Leaves should yield 2-3 steeps.