Longjing Fluffballs


Made from leaves that have not been oxidized.

Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby Tead Off » May 24th, '10, 23:17

Tim,

I found one! I maniacally went through my bag with my jeweler's loupe and there it was. I like to think of it as the lion's mane or the dragon's beard. :)
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby teashionista » Jun 26th, '10, 12:27

Just got my Superfine Long Jing from Dragon Tea House. Lo and behold, there was a fluffball on the very top :shock:
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby rayFrev » Jun 28th, '10, 00:30

beachape wrote:What are those little fluff balls that you get in longjing? Maybe my imagination is failing me, but I can't figure out what part of the teaplant has fluff balls and why you only find them in longjing....

Here is a picture of what i mean. Those little white fluff balls almost look like spider eggs. When I first found them I thought they were spider eggs (was a little put off at the time), but I eventually figured out that they were plant material. Picture has some pretty crappy longjing but lots of those balls. I imagine they normally try to pick them out and thats why I usually find a few.

Image


I just ordered some Longjing, the leaves smell fresh and healthy green, very high quality but I too have noticed these little stone looking balls, so i picked a couple out and they are like you mentioned... actually little fluffy balls of fibrous material. I got concerned and didn't want to brew the tea so i emailed the site i ordered from, got no reply, so i emailed another site i had ordered from previously and got another no reply. I ended up brewing with the tea and got a astringent type taste so i haven't brewed any more which sucks since it was an expensive batch to buy.

I ordered some Ceylon organic and other green teas and drink that instead. I am pissed off that i got no reply from the sellers at all. I figured that it was part of the leaves that got fluffed up into little balls, but not getting solid confirmation makes me wary of brewing with this loose tea batch.
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby debunix » Jun 28th, '10, 00:37

rayFrev wrote:I figured that it was part of the leaves that got fluffed up into little balls, but not getting solid confirmation makes me wary of brewing with this loose tea batch.


That's the stuff that makes the leaves of silver needle tea silvery--the fine downy fuzz that protects the new leaves. It has been rubbed away from the leaves during the processing and forms these little balls. They're flavorless and harmless. If you don't like the tea, it's because the tea is poor or your brewing is not optimum, not because of the little fuzzies.
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby TIM » Jun 28th, '10, 00:41

Ray- the picture attached didn't look like a longjing tea. I am sorry to suggest that. ~ T
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby Chip » Jun 28th, '10, 00:54

TIM wrote:Ray- the picture attached didn't look like a longjing tea. I am sorry to suggest that. ~ T

Reminds me of Bai Long Jing ... a special varietal LJ that was offered by TeaSpring???
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby debunix » Jun 28th, '10, 01:00

Image is from the original poster for this thread--not the tea in question.
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby Tead Off » Jun 28th, '10, 03:09

RayFev,

You will find most suggestions to brew LJ at 80C. This is too hot, IMO. I use water that is 65C. I use about 1/3 of a 100ml pot for the leaf. The 1st brew is no more than 30sec. You can adjust this after you get the feel of how the tea brews. I usually use same temp for the 1st 3 brews then maybe a bit hotter and longer. Some people use even lower temp. Maybe it depends on the quality of the tea but you must use a good amount of leaf. LJ should taste sweet, slightly nutty/roasted, and, buttery in the mouth. Aroma is almost bready or yeasty and can have floral notes. It's an interesting tea that I love to drink in the Spring. Leaves should be small, uniform, and, whole, not broken or varying much in size. This is how you know you have a decent quality LJ.
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby rayFrev » Jun 28th, '10, 04:03

Tead Off wrote:RayFev,

You will find most suggestions to brew LJ at 80C. This is too hot, IMO. I use water that is 65C. I use about 1/3 of a 100ml pot for the leaf. The 1st brew is no more than 30sec. You can adjust this after you get the feel of how the tea brews. I usually use same temp for the 1st 3 brews then maybe a bit hotter and longer. Some people use even lower temp. Maybe it depends on the quality of the tea but you must use a good amount of leaf. LJ should taste sweet, slightly nutty/roasted, and, buttery in the mouth. Aroma is almost bready or yeasty and can have floral notes. It's an interesting tea that I love to drink in the Spring. Leaves should be small, uniform, and, whole, not broken or varying much in size. This is how you know you have a decent quality LJ.


oh thanks for the replies @all, i'm obviously new here... but i bought my Longjing about a month ago actually from HolyMountain lol... i usually buy from a guy out of HongKong. I just never have seen Longjing with these little "fluffballs" lol every time i type the word. I'm drinking it now... about brewing yeah, thanks for the tips. I use filtered water even though tap tastes better to me, 1st brew 3 minutes, 2nd 6 minute etc. I usually vary the amount of tea until i find the sweet spot. A good brew of Longjing to me is as you stated, nutty, sweet perfume aftertaste that lingers all day on the palate... not getting that with this tea.

I'm half Pinoy/caucasian american so i'm not biased against Chinese, i just read a lot of the headlines about asbestos, tainted milk etc out of China and these so called "fluffballs" don't make me want to drink this expensive tea at all to be honest. I was on the verge of tweezing them all out and having them sent for chemical analysis haha.

I think i'll go back to drinking my Makaibari organic instead, no "fluffballs"!!!

I usually buy 1/4 pound at a time

1 x Makaibari Organic Green FTGFOP (G-MOG-1)
Size 1/4 pound $12.00
1 x Organic Idulgashena Green OP (G-OIG-1)
Size 1/4 pound $12.00
1 x 1st Grade Dragon Well (Lung Ching) (G-DW-3)
Size 1/4 pound $17.00

the 2 organic green teas are great, the Ceylon is very minty for those who might not have tried it.

I'm going to be 44 this year and i've had many negative life events... so the last thing i need to think about is toxic "fluffballs" haha, although it's probably nothing like one of you stated.

I started collecting YiXing teapots about 15 years ago? or so, but drank black teas, about 10 years back i went to green teas exclusively but YiXing teapots are only for black teas higher temp brewing... so now i just brew in a glass or mug with a strainer. Maybe i've just never had TRULY 1st grade Longjing until this batch with "fluffballs"??? but in all these years i've never seen them until now.

(long rant over)
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby beachape » Jun 29th, '10, 01:15

Don't stress out about fluffballs. They won't hurt you. :D
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby brad4419 » Jun 29th, '10, 12:11

I've been drinking fluff balls for a at least a year and Im still alive 8)
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby rabbit » Jun 29th, '10, 15:44

Fluffballs ... is an example of something that I might drink in my tea ... but not something that I'd want as a nickname .......
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby bongoman » Jun 29th, '10, 17:31

You will find most suggestions to brew LJ at 80C. This is too hot, IMO. I use water that is 65C. I use about 1/3 of a 100ml pot for the leaf. The 1st brew is no more than 30sec. You can adjust this after you get the feel of how the tea brews. I usually use same temp for the 1st 3 brews then maybe a bit hotter and longer. Some people use even lower temp...


Stephane from TeaMasters, referencing TeaParker, actually suggests using hotter water than traditional suggestions. Indeed, he mentions using just boiled water.

He gives 3 methods of brewing depending on the quality of leaves so that the lower the grade, the cooler the water ends up in terms of effective temperature. Nonetheless with the highest grade LJ, his method uses just boiled water poured down the wall of a gaiwan containing LJ.

More here.

As for the fluffballs, there's a mention of them here on Hojo Tea. Search within that page for 'lump' which are referred to thus:
High grade long jing contains white lump. Many customers misunderstand with spider web or foreign material. In fact it is the hair from leaf bud itself. Young tea bud of earliest up-coming spring crop is covered with tiny hair. During rolling process, hair came off from the tea leaf and roll up in white ball. It is one of the quality index of Long Jing.
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby Tead Off » Jun 29th, '10, 22:17

It's best to simply try the various temps and see what you like. The hardest part is getting good LJ.
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Re: Longjing Fluffballs

Postby rayFrev » Jun 30th, '10, 21:17

i just wish the seller would confirm that it's safe... i stopped brewing my last order of Longjing... when i tweezer out the balls i pull them apart and they look more like the filter in a cigarette. Just creeps me out... it doesn't look like fibers of hairs from a plant more like tan colored drab gunk.
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