How do you brew your Dragonwell?


Made from leaves that have not been oxidized.

How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby fire_snake » Mar 5th, '11, 20:08

Quick poll to see what everyone else is doing.

Tall glass? Gaiwan? Some other way?

I find that I'm pretty good with the tall glass method. The tea is ready to drink once the leaves have settled to the bottom. Add more water when you're getting close to the leaves.

When it comes to a gaiwan, however, I always end up unhappy (at least for now.) I tend to either over-brew the tea or under-brew it. I'm thinking I should let the tea brew with the lid off.

Tall glass seems so much easier. But I'd really like to work on my gaiwan technique. In fact, I should have entitled this thread "Please help. My gaiwan technique sucks." :wink:
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby Catfur » Mar 6th, '11, 18:20

I use the same Kyusu I use for sencha.
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby Proinsias » Mar 6th, '11, 20:08

I used to brew it in a tall, slim pyrex jug, around 150ml. It died. Now I use a gaiwan, around 100ml. Tim's post here advises filling the gaiwan about 1/3 full and using prety cool water - 120f. I tend to use more leaf and water a little hotter.

What long jing are you drinking? I'm told 2010 was not a great year for long jing, and many other teas. The only long jing I've had recently was Master Luo's Long Jing, it knocked my socks off and I've just bought another tiny packet. I am really hoping to try his long jing from a better harvest in the future.

*edit*

How are you holding the gaiwan?
I'd advise discarding the base and using the index finger on the nub with the middle finger and thumb holding the gaiwan, it's a bit like skinning a cat.

MarshalN's video might be worth a look:
http://marshaln.xanga.com/701007573/using-a-gaiwan/
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby fire_snake » Mar 6th, '11, 21:47

Proinsias wrote:I used to brew it in a tall, slim pyrex jug, around 150ml. It died. Now I use a gaiwan, around 100ml. Tim's post here advises filling the gaiwan about 1/3 full and using prety cool water - 120f. I tend to use more leaf and water a little hotter.

What long jing are you drinking? I'm told 2010 was not a great year for long jing, and many other teas. The only long jing I've had recently was Master Luo's Long Jing, it knocked my socks off and I've just bought another tiny packet. I am really hoping to try his long jing from a better harvest in the future.

*edit*

How are you holding the gaiwan?
I'd advise discarding the base and using the index finger on the nub with the middle finger and thumb holding the gaiwan, it's a bit like skinning a cat.

MarshalN's video might be worth a look:
http://marshaln.xanga.com/701007573/using-a-gaiwan/


Thanks for pointing me to Tim's post. That actually helped with *this* particular Dragonwell, which seems very weak at low temps and is too bitter at higher temps. In-between it's still not that great. I think it's just a rather weak batch of Dragonwell. However, it got a little better with the technique you posted about, though the servings were on the smallish side.

What surprised me are the incredibly short steeps. I've always understood that you brew Dragonwell in a tall glass and wait until the leaves become turgid and have settled to the bottom. That could take a couple of minutes at the very least. 15-20 second average steeps seems fairly odd to me. It's almost treating the Dragonwell like Sencha, is it not?

I'm holding the gaiwan fine - that was never really a problem. Controlling how the gaiwan brews tea seems to be the issue. However, the shorter steep technique using cooler temps seems to help. I think I was over brewing. Thank you.

Christian
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby Tead Off » Mar 7th, '11, 02:26

Proinsias wrote:I used to brew it in a tall, slim pyrex jug, around 150ml. It died. Now I use a gaiwan, around 100ml. Tim's post here advises filling the gaiwan about 1/3 full and using prety cool water - 120f. I tend to use more leaf and water a little hotter.

What long jing are you drinking? I'm told 2010 was not a great year for long jing, and many other teas. The only long jing I've had recently was Master Luo's Long Jing, it knocked my socks off and I've just bought another tiny packet. I am really hoping to try his long jing from a better harvest in the future.

*edit*

How are you holding the gaiwan?
I'd advise discarding the base and using the index finger on the nub with the middle finger and thumb holding the gaiwan, it's a bit like skinning a cat.

MarshalN's video might be worth a look:
http://marshaln.xanga.com/701007573/using-a-gaiwan/


Tim's suggestion is a good place to start. Personally, i like a bit hotter water to start, maybe 55-60cc, even hotter depending upon the LJ. 20sec and adjust from there. This is in a gaiwan.

Also had Master Luo's LJ. Very good, but I had better in Hong Kong. Too expensive. It becomes a rich man's game. Even a bad harvest brings top $$.
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby bagua7 » Mar 7th, '11, 08:21

Gaibei/gaiwan all the way. Make sure it is a thin-walled one (also call eggshell gaibei) and don't pour the tea directly on the leaves but using a circular motion and at the same time moving the kettle up and down on the vessel's wall.

Enjoy your tea!
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby bryan293 » Mar 8th, '11, 14:00

I've been using a kyusu for the Handmade Imperial Shi Feng Long Jing from JK teashop, but I'm curious to try the tall glass method as I've heard about it being used with Tai Ping Hou Kui. I'm not a big fan of gaiwans; I think my pouring technique is the problem.
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby Tead Off » Mar 9th, '11, 00:59

bryan293 wrote:I've been using a kyusu for the Handmade Imperial Shi Feng Long Jing from JK teashop, but I'm curious to try the tall glass method as I've heard about it being used with Tai Ping Hou Kui. I'm not a big fan of gaiwans; I think my pouring technique is the problem.

Tall glass is used for this tea due to the excessive size of the leaves. LJ leaves are much, much, smaller. Gaiwan technique can be learned in one minute. A lot is common sense. Don't fill it up where your fingers are touching the water.
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby verus » Mar 9th, '11, 12:55

bagua7 wrote:Gaibei/gaiwan all the way. Make sure it is a thin-walled one (also call eggshell gaibei) and don't pour the tea directly on the leaves but using a circular motion and at the same time moving the kettle up and down on the vessel's wall.

Enjoy your tea!


What's the benefit of using an eggshell gaiwan instead of a sturdier one with thick walls?

I had a thick walled gaiwan and liked it very much...but it broke! Looking for a good, not too expensive replacement.
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby Tead Off » Mar 9th, '11, 23:03

verus wrote:
bagua7 wrote:Gaibei/gaiwan all the way. Make sure it is a thin-walled one (also call eggshell gaibei) and don't pour the tea directly on the leaves but using a circular motion and at the same time moving the kettle up and down on the vessel's wall.

Enjoy your tea!


What's the benefit of using an eggshell gaiwan instead of a sturdier one with thick walls?

I had a thick walled gaiwan and liked it very much...but it broke! Looking for a good, not too expensive replacement.

Some drinkers feel that thick walled gaiwans will cook the green tea leaves too much because they retain the heat longer. I'm not sure if it makes that much difference.
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby David R. » Mar 10th, '11, 05:16

Tead Off wrote:Some drinkers feel that thick walled gaiwans will cook the green tea leaves too much because they retain the heat longer. I'm not sure if it makes that much difference.


I am rather interested in people opinions about this. I have just bought a gorgeous medium-thick walled gaiwan - one to rule them all ! - and I am wondering if I'll need a eggshell one to have better results on green tea. I couldn't make some tests as I am waiting for the new crop to restock.
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby gingkoseto » Mar 10th, '11, 11:01

David R. wrote:
Tead Off wrote:Some drinkers feel that thick walled gaiwans will cook the green tea leaves too much because they retain the heat longer. I'm not sure if it makes that much difference.


I am rather interested in people opinions about this. I have just bought a gorgeous medium-thick walled gaiwan - one to rule them all ! - and I am wondering if I'll need a eggshell one to have better results on green tea. I couldn't make some tests as I am waiting for the new crop to restock.

Thick wall won't cause tea to be over-cooked, if the gaiwan is not fully covered. Traditionally when gaiwan is used for green tea, the bowl is not fully covered by the lid until the tea starts to cool down. Even if people use gaiwan in a "gongfu" style (which is not used traditionally for green tea), with the adjusted water temperature or by leaving the lid off, the leaves won't be cooked.

I don't believe I can use a thin-walled gaiwan for more than 2 0times without breaking it :shock: Am I the only one? :oops: Usually before I could notice it, there is already hair line on it - and my thin-walled gaiwan aren't even those with the thinnest walls in market.
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby David R. » Mar 10th, '11, 11:37

Very interesting. Thank you.
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby rabbit » Mar 10th, '11, 12:57

I most enjoy LJ when prepared in a tall glass.
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Re: How do you brew your Dragonwell?

Postby tenuki » Mar 10th, '11, 14:04

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