Tea Craft: When is Tea Picked?

Picking tea leaves is not just about harvesting tea that will make it to your cup. It’s a key part of the lifecycle of the tea bush.

The timing of the pick is crucial for quality - in China it's said that ‘three days early it is treasure, three days late it is grass’ - and to ensure the start of the germination of new leaves at just the right time.

In countries like Kenya where the climate is similar all year, there is growth all year and picking every fortnight. In countries with seasons, the tea plant is dormant for part of the year, until it ‘flushes’ into life and new shoots emerge; picking can start.

Different countries revere different flushes or harvests - the 1st flush in Darjeeling in Spring is considered to be the most flavoursome, whilst it’s the 2nd flush in Assam that is most prized.

Find out more about how tea is picked.


Dragonwell Lung Ching Green Tea Pouch 100g

Net Weight: 100g

Named after the Dragon Well village in Hangzhou, this famous hand-pressed green tea, once a favourite of the Chinese emperor Kang Xi in the 1600's, is refreshingly sweet with a delicate pale yellow liquor.

The East India Company - Lifestyle


One of the most famous green teas in the world, it is named after a well in the village where the tea is grown, the wonderfully named Dragon Well or Lung Ching (or Long Jin or even Long Jing) in the Zhejiang Provence of eastern China.

It’s most distinguished by the remarkable sword-like shape of the leaf – very green, flat, long and folded in at the edges, achieved by hand pressing and shaping in a wok until perfectly roasted.

Our authentic ‘one-leaf and a bud’ Dragon Well is a First Grade version o f this truly sublime tea from the West Lake District, is one of the tea connoisseurs ‘top ten’ teas of the world.
Dragon Well is an ancient tea, first drunk more than 1500 years ago.

The legend of the naming of Dragon Well is even older and there are different versions. One has it that during a very severe drought, a Buddhist monk summoned a lucky Dragon, who brought rain to fill the village well and so saved the villager's crops. The well was naturally named Dragon Well.

A second legend was that the water in the village well would swirl and move during a storm as if there were a dragon under the surface. Perhaps with a little imagination, the moving dragon can still be seen in the cup as hot water is poured onto the green leaves.
A gorgeous pale-yellow liquor in cup.

Lung Ching classically has wonderful aromas of fresh cut grass and toasted hazelnut.

The flavour is mellow and delicate with both sweet and a savoury notes.




Brewing Time



Chinese Green Tea


Store in a cool, dry place avoiding direct sunlight and strong odours.


What is Green Tea?

Just like Black Tea, it all starts with a small ‘just-plucked’ green tea leaf, usually about 5 cm long.

The leaf pickers deliver their leaves to the local factory for immediate processing. The core difference v Black Tea - the oxidation process that darkens the leaf is completely missing. The green leaf remains… green.

Step 1 - ‘Withering’: the whole leaves are spread out in warm air for up to a day to reduce the water content by about 10 to 20%. The leaves literally wilt and starts to lose some of its vibrant colour.

Step 2 - ‘Steaming/Pan Frying’: The critical ingredient to produce Green Tea. After withering, the wilted team is steamed or pan fried to destroy the enzymes that would otherwise be the catalyst for oxidation.
Step 3 - ‘Rolling / Shaping’: the soft leaves are shaped to requirement, either on a machine or by hand. This is where the world of green tea explodes in creating many unique teas, where a specific village may craft the tea to a characteristic and ownable shape. What emerges maybe the very large and thin leaves of Dragon Well Green Tea or the tight bullets of Gunpowder Tea.

Step 4 - ‘Drying’: the process varies from producer to producer and is sometimes integral to the shaping process. But in a nutshell, the Green Tea is heated in pans or ovens to remove remaining water content and ensure it is dry and stable for packaging.

Our spirit delivers no ordinary products

  • FAQ

    Does green tea include caffeine and is there more or less than black tea and coffee?
    Yes it does, and it varies. All tea leaves, just like coffee, contain caffeine. Tea usually has a lower level of caffeine than coffee, which averages around 95mg for a normal cup of coffee. But it is impossible to give a precise answer, because there are so many variables at play - the length of brew time, the amount of tea used, the age of the leaf, the provenance of the leaf. Even the temperature of the water. Our best advice is to treat all tea and coffee similarly if you need to manage your caffeine intake.

  • Delivery & Returns

    UK Standard Delivery: £3.95
    UK Next Day Delivery (mainland UK only): £9.95 (Order before 12pm)
    International Delivery is available, please see our delivery page for details. For more information and Terms & Conditions, please see our Delivery page.

  • Reviews

£206.00 £206.00