Mei Jia Wu Longjing Tea Culture Village

Not too many cities deserve such a name as paradise on earth, but Hang Zhou in China does. Too many cities now in China, desperate with economic development, are losing their souls, but Hang Zhou is not. Why so? Nature blessing and human efforts are the answers. One is tea culture, Mei Jia Wu Longjing Tea and its culture village.

The name of Longjing, directly translated as Dragon Well comes from 4 sources, tea tree, the well, the temple and the spring. This tea comes from the shores of West Lake (Xi-hu), at Hangzhou City Zhejiang Province. By far, Longjing is highly praised because of its absolute beauty in four aspects: greenish color, elegant fragrance, mellow taste and prettiness in appearance. The delicate fragrance is very long-lasting, and the bright liquor gives a refreshing, brisk, mellow, and sweet after taste. To process Longjing, the tea leaf must undergo the intensive pan-frying steps by hands during the entire process. In a custom-made pan, the leaves are repeatedly stirred and agitated by hand, with different hand gesture: as much as 10 different styles are a must.

There are many Longjing found in the market, nevertheless, the best Longjing comes from its original places, the Longjing Village which covers several historically renowned production areas. At this moment, there are many tea produced from other places in Zhejiang Province, which is known as Zhejiang Longjing . However, due to the localized climatic environment and different manufacturing expertise, the quality is different from its origin. Besides, the production areas at certain places of Zhejiang Province are located in the city area, which is exposed to the risk of heavy metal contamination from vehicles and industrial area.

In Hangzhou , dont forget to try some Longjing (Dragon Well) tea. It is a famous variety of green tea from Hangzhou and is produced pan fried by hand to stop the fermentation process, which refers to drying of the freshly picked leaves, resulting in enzymatic oxidation. We visited Mei Jia Wu Tea Village for its Longjing Tea. Mei Jia Wu Longjing tea has a light nutty aroma, smell of fresh leaves, very smooth taste and a pleasant flowery aftertaste. The tea leaves are green, flat and slender. One container of half a catty , equivalent to 500 grams in China, costs around S$50 (about US$36). Not cheap. The promoter motivated us by stuffing and compressing the tea leaves into one container, to make it look like we got more tea leaves! But remember to tape the container cover, as the pressured leaves might pop the cover and create a mess in your bag!

Most people go to Mei Jia Wu for three reasons: to drink tea, buy tea and eat Nong Jia Cai, or peasant family dishes. My reasons were slightly different. Instead of buying the tea, I took pictures. Longjin Cha, or Dragon Well tea, known as the best green tea in China, is so far a pure luxury for me. It is not a secret that agricultural fields can be really picturesque in China, such as the rice paddies and terraces. The tea plantations at Mei Jia Wu are as good as them, if not better. Neatly planted rows of tea bushes line up the hillside; meandering soil paths, like brown threads, sew the pieces of green together; villagers pick up tea sprouts in their wide-brimmed straw hats; bamboo forests swing along the top of the hills?

James Ashe is an American traveller, who loves trave all over the world. Kungfu Panda is his pet name for his China travel servicesarticles. See more about his China vacationsblog and tips just log on the ChinaTravelDepot.com, which sponsor his China vacations in China.