2019 En Shi Yu Lu green tea

En Shi Yu Lu (Green Dew)

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Green Tea

 

En Shi Yu Lu (Green Dew)

 

 

Grade: an early spring Mao Jian pluck (one leaf, one bud)

Oxidation: none

Manufacture: lightly steamed and hand-rolled

 

 

Appearance: long & wiry, with a slight twist

Flavor: sweet, floral and herbaceous

Aroma: soft, buttery

Liquor: medium green with golden highlights

 

Ba Jiao Village Area, Wufeng Mountains
Hubei Province, China

2019 Pre-Qing Ming
1st Spring Harvesting Season
(end of March – April 5th)

 

China Spring Green Tea:

 

Chinese spring green teas are categorized by four seasonal designations indicating which time in the spring the tea was picked and manufactured. The earlier the tea is plucked the smaller the yield of that tea will be and the more expensive the tea will be. The earliest plucked teas are the most desirable for sweetness and delicacy, and the fever for these teas is high in China as well as in the West. Chinese spring green teas are only plucked once a year in their designated harvesting seasons.

 

 – Early spring plucked teas:

 

Pre-Qing Ming tea: 1st Spring Harvesting Season from end of March to before April 5th.

 

Pre-Qing Ming teas are the first teas plucked each new spring season. Depending on the location and altitude in each tea-producing region, leaf plucking can begin as early as the middle week of March and continue until April 5th.

 

Pre-Qing Ming teas command the highest prices because the demand for these teas outpaces the supply each spring. This is especially true for Famous Teas such as Gan Lu, Long Ding, Longjing, Lu Shan, Tai Ping Hou Kui, and Zhu Ye Qing.

 

Yu Qian /Before the Rain tea: 2nd Spring Harvesting Season from April 5th to April 20th

 

– Late spring plucked teas:

 

Gu Yu tea: 3rd Spring Harvesting Season from April 21st to May 6th

 

Li Xia tea: 4th Spring Harvesting Season from May 7th until
May 21st

 

 

 

img-more_seasonal Seasonal Tea Explained

Use 1 Tablespoon (2-3 grams) per 6 oz water
Steep 2-3 infusions at 2 minutes each
Water temperature should be 170˚F-180˚F

En Shi Yu Lu is an historically important, ancient tea, first produced during China’s Tang dynasty (618-907). It is unique among China’s green teas in the way it is made.

Chinese tea history suggests that the fresh leaf used to manufacture this tea underwent some manner of ‘steaming’ before being rolled, shaped, and dried. Steaming as a distinct step in Chinese tea processing disappeared sometime just after the Tang Dynasty, and has not been a part of Chinese green tea production since.

But during the time that it was being utilized, Japan’s fledgling tea industry learned this method from the Chinese and adoped the practice. Today, a sophisticated variation of this early steaming step is used in the manufacture of basically all Japanese green teas and is responsible for the distinctive style of Japanese green tea.

But for En Shi Yu Lu this change meant that the tea began to be made using newly developed Chinese green tea making techniques: fixing, rolling, shaping and firing. These steps are still used today, with some refinements worked in over time.

In the 20th century efforts were made to return to making En Shi Yu Lu with the ‘original’ steam method. To do this, the fresh leaf is exposed to steam on a heat table for a short time. When the steam is turned off and the leaf cools, workers roll and shape the leaf by hand.

En Shi Yu Lu is one of only a few China green teas that is processed using a steaming method. Steaming fresh leaf in the tea factory adds depth of flavor and a bright vegetal quality to the tea.

The flavor of En Shi Yu Lu is floral and herbaceous in the cup, and the tea has a rich body and mouth feel. En Shi Yu Lu is a delicious green tea from an area that does not produce very many green teas and certainly none as famous as this tea.

Fans of our Lu Shan green tea should like this tea, too. Some say that En Shi Yu Lu is similar to Japanese sencha green tea, but in truth we feel that it is quite different in all respects from Japanese sencha. En Shi Yu Lu, despite the steaming process in its manufacture, is quite Chinese in character and appearance.

This tea is made in the Wufeng mountains of southwest Hubei Province in the Tujia Nationality and Miao Nationality Autonomous Prefecture, by residents from the Tujia and Miao ethnicities.

 NOTE for 2019:

Some years the leaf tends to roll into what has the appearance of a loose ‘fold’, and other years the leaf tends to crease along the length of the leaf, creating an elongated slender, needle style tea. For 2019 the leaf has been tending to prefer to roll into a long, slender, needle shape, similar to our delicious Lu Shan green tea. We love this tea!