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Tea Review: Organic Green Dragon

October 14, 2008

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Organic Green DragonOrganic Green Dragon is Mighty Leaf’s version of the classic Chinese Dragonwell. It has a more perfumy pre-infused scent than any dragonwell or other Chinese green tea that I have had, which is a little unsettling, but it brews into a very smooth, calming liquor. It exhibits a very noticeable vegetal and long-lasting aftertaste, but the basic flavor of the tea is milder than other dragonwells I have had. The samples were sent to us in bag form, which made it a little hard to control the ratio of leaf to water. I think that to my taste it might have needed a little more leaf for a fuller flavor.

It does open up quite a bit in the second infusion. It had a more interesting taste that was more typical of the dragonwells I am accustomed to. I steeped it longer the second time, 5-6 minutes as opposed to the recommended 3 minutes on the package.

This is the historical description of Dragonwell from Mighty Leaf’s site:

Grown in the Zhejiang province, Dragonwell traditionally boasts four unique traits: flat, broad leaves, a jade-green liquor, fresh aroma and a mellow flavor. Also known as Lung Chings, Dragonwell is one of China’s most famous and finest teas.

Legend says that in 250AD a drought severely hampered monks’ efforts to grow tea on Lion’s Peak mountain. A monk hoping to end the drought prayed fervently for rain to a dragon who supposedly lived in a nearby spring. Instantly, rains poured down to nourish the wilting tea crop. Named Dragon’s Well, the spring never ran dry again. A further historical note–during the Tang dynasty, a renowned man of letters, Lu Yu referred to Dragonwell in his book, “The Book of Tea” (Cha Jing).

Dragonwell is notable in appearance for its flat leaves, ranging in shade from bright green to almost black, the result of the pan roasting it undergoes. It’s a nice tea, calming and refreshing. I wouldn’t recommend using it in tea bag form, though. It seems to work much better in teapots or tea thermoses where there is more control over quantity of leaf. Mighty Leaf’s version is good and probably a little more suitable to the tastes of people who are unaccustomed to Chinese green teas.

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