In this clip we’re preparing some green tea.
Now in the beginning tea was consumed as green tea only. So all tea, there was no black tea,
no oxidized tea, and we have different green teas right here in front of us. We have two
green teas from China and one green tea from Japan. The reason why I have all three on
display here is because the production method is distinctly different in both countries
and produces a completely different cup of tea. In China, green teas are pan fired. What
that means is after the leaves are picked and the surface moisture is dried off the
leaves, they actually are pan fired in a wok. So just imagine you’re stir frying your vegetables.
The same thing happens to the tea leaves. They’re pan fired and then finally dried.
This is the only processing that takes place during green tea processing overall. Now,
in Japan on the other hand, the process is different in that the leaves are not pan fired,
but steamed and this produces a very green color. Now I will go ahead and actually prepare
this green tea from China which is a Dragon Well, a very famous tea and you can see the
leaves are very flat, almost pine needle like, which are very distinct for this particular
tea, produces a very nice vegetal cup of tea, and we’ll just pour it all in this cup and
infuse it, just like with the white tea, with water that is below the boiling point at about
one seventy five. Typically, teas from Japan you want, you want to brew with a little bit
cooler water, one sixty five to one seventy five will do, and we steep it for about three
minutes, and I leave the leaves here in this pot. And while this is steeping, I’ll tell
you a little bit more about the green tea variation between both countries. China, for
example, has only manual processes that are employed in the production of green tea whereas
Japan uses automation. They actually have these shears that kind of cut the tea leaves
off the bushes and therefore you’ll always be able to recognize a green tea from Japan
because it looks like freshly mowed grass, whereas in China, China prides itself on it’s
variety of leaf styles, and you have leaf styles like we just saw here with the Dragon
Well. Flat, pine needle like, and you also have something that looks almost like little
pellets of gunpowder which is actually the name of this tea. It’s on Bret’s manly tea
list and produces a nice green vegetal cup of tea with a hint of smoke at the finish.
Now the tea is ready and we can pour it through our strainer. I do want to point out, look
at the needles how they stand up straight which is really unique for the Dragon Wells
type of a tea. The Chinese call this actually the agony of the leaf. You can watch the tea
leaves dance in the cup while they unfold and release essential oils that we get to
enjoy with this cup of tea. Dragon Well has a vegetal load, strong vegetal load reminiscent
of spinach, or some people will say asparagus, but it’s a beautiful refreshing tea.