Chinese Teas


Thought I’d drop this here:

According to the site, they opened their flagship store here in Pasadena last November.

I have no knowledge of tea, quality, pricing - but have been avidly reading this thread and learning a bit.

(For the Horde!) #42

By the way, just to clarify, I am not saying that I am too good for restaurant tea. I was really trying to say that it is not the best thing to order really high-end expensive tea in restaurant because they almost always ruin the tea. Honestly, it is like seeing someone ordered a high end steak and the kitchen microwaved it. Can you eat it? Of course, you can, but…


I think that should be good though, lol. I agree with you, I prefer drinking that at home.

(For the Horde!) #44

Wow. Thanks a lot. I skimmed over and will read a little more. Pu-erh is my current flavor tea – particular raw Pu-erh tea. It seems like a store which focuses on Pu-erh tea. This is a photo of my three raw Pu-erh in my office. :sweat_smile:

I find Don from Mei Leaf to be pretty good and welcoming speaker for tea beginners. He is branching out now, but he was a lot more focused on Pu-erh tea.


Me too, it is big subject! Which type of tea do you like?


Herbal teas, mostly: they are what I grew up with - nothing fancy, at all.

But I find them comforting and they keep me hydrated. :wink:


When I saw the store as we drove by I took a photo to remind me to look it up; as soon as I realized what it was I immediately thought of you and this thread!


Ki Chan Tea Company. They have a web retail shop and will ship internationally, via that shop or via phone.


Today I asked LockCha Tea House and Homeland Tea Garden about the Before Ming lung Jing. Homeland said this year they are not special ordering for their members the lion peak Lung Jing because it’s too pricey. I asked why and they said too many people wanted it. LockCha Tea House said the leaves are being harvested now and should be mailed here next week. Source is Lion Peak. No West Lake like last year.

So, the good Lung Jing is coming, very soon. It’s just not Before Ming.

(For the Horde!) #50

Based on what I know the past couple of years the prices have been the same. So I am guessing that they sourced the tea last year, and not enough customers buying it. In fact, they said the price is too high because too many people want it. So the demand is there, unfortunately not from their own standard customers. Actually, I believe the leaves have already harvested for a month now and being sold. The First Pick is definitely out.

If they are sourcing in Dragon Well tea after Ming, then the one highlighted below is the best they can get.


Lion Peak tea is within West Lake… A Lion Peak Dragon Well tea has to be West Lake.


Where did the top picks go then?

For some reason the man on the phone made a distinction between the two places. I didn’t ask further.

(For the Horde!) #52

Top Pick? Or First Pick? First Pick is on the very top of that list (in the previous post). This is the most expensive harvest. They are sold just like other tea, and these first pick teas are on the market now. I saw and test-drank them last week. Really good.

Lion Peak 獅峰 is within West Lake 西湖 – in fact pretty much dead center. I showed a map earlier, but here is a google map I looked up. See the red shaded area? That is the entire of West Lake 西湖. The blue dot with a camera symbol is Lion Peak 獅峰. I am not sure what your friend was saying. Maybe he meant he is sourcing Lion Peak tea, but not the rest of OTHER West Lake teas. Or he meant to say that he is sourcing Lion Peak tea, and not just OTHER lesser famous West Lake teas. Texan steak is America steak…


I just don’t understand why tea stores in the USA get the first pick before Hong King tea stores…

(For the Horde!) #54

Ha ha ha. No, no… just these stores you are talking to.

Well, the tea leaves are picked and processed in China and then shipped all over the world by flight. The First Pick tea was picked from middle of March. Not every store will source in First Pick. From what your friend said, he found the First Pick tea to be too expensive, but what he really was saying is that his customers won’t buy these expensive teas, so that is why he is only sourcing in after Ming tea which is the April tea. Isn’t that what he said?


Maybe he is only sourcing in high quality tea when customers ask them to (basically preorder) and he himself won’t stock anything.

(For the Horde!) #55

These tea are not cheap, so shop keepers have to be confident in reselling them in or they will lose money. Here is a Hong Kong teashop Ming Cha. It is still selling last year’s First Pick Lion Peak tea. Even one year old, it is still being sold at HK $1680 (~US $200) for only 38 gram. It may have been selling them ~50% more last year when it was fresh.


I wonder there are all these mafia coming out selling last year’s or last last last year stock. I had a look at Yahoo… everybody claimed they had the Lion Peak 2018 before Ming version. LOL

(For the Horde!) #57

Dragon Well really isn’t my most favorite tea, so I am only sharing what I believe. In my opinion, some people overly focus on the “name”. Name is important, but it is more than that. Between a high quality Plum 梅家塢龍井 and a lower quality Lion 獅峰龍井, I much rather get the higher quality Plum.

Before Ming is a good period, but there is still a huge range “Before Ming” and prices can vary (5 folds difference). As we were talking about earlier, if someone only states Before Ming and nothing else, then it is likely the lower end of Before Ming. Finally, even these are rough classifications by time. Lion Peak Dragon Well refers to several hills, and not all hills are equal. And within each hill, not all tea farms are the same.
What about Wengji Mountain 翁家山 Dragon Well? Some people count it under Lion, and some count it under Dragon. I really like it and I have it at home right now (2017 harvest).

Last last year Dragon Well is totally not worth it. Waste of money.


If the green young tea is kept sous-vide and out of light. In theory should they be intact? Meaning 2017 version is really that bad compared to the 2018? Although from the packing of Ming Cha, the leaves are just packaged in a tin can with air contact.

One thing good about fermented Pu Erh, the older they are, the more valuable they become.


Especially those who speculate.

Do you know Green Spring Spires, are they similar to Dragon Well, or different?


Just a note on Ying Kee Tea shop in HK, they have the practice of blending tea. Though I don’t know if they do that for Dragon Well.

If you have time to go to Lok Cha in Sheung Wan, ask for sample drink with the tea you like, they are very happy to show you and have you tasting their tea. (although I don’t think they will show you the top pick Dragon Well for free).