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A great find for those looking for a more green tea with more character! Like several of our other teas, Liu'an Guapian is deservedly in the list of China's top ten teas. Made only from larger, mature leaves that are rolled up during processing, the dry leaves have a distinctively plump shape to them – giving rise to its Chinese name of “melon seeds”. Very uncharacteristic for a green tea, it has a quite sweet taste and strong aroma, that is also overlaid with an almost smoky, spicy tang.
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TeaVivre's Liu'an Guapian is sourced from a plantation in this teas home province of Liu'an county, and is produced using traditional manual methods. This tea’s unique taste and shape comes from it being the only Chinese green tea that is made without using any buds, new leaves or stems. During processing, mature leaves are separated out and then carefully cut by hand to remove any stems and the central leaf vein. They then undergo a lengthy drying and rolling process, resulting in its unique round shape. When brewed Liu'an Guapian has a great complex sweet taste, and a bright, emerald color to the tea.
The process of Liu An Gua Pian is unique. It is the only kind of tea made of pure leaf –without any buds and petiole. Only use the leaves picked before the lunar term Grain Rain as material. It is not only unique, but also difficult. Picking the fresh leaf of Liu An Gua Pia takes a lot of efforts. It must have no buds and petiole; the second piece of leaf from the top is the best.
After picked, the leaves must be spread for a period of time, and then be stir-fried. Stir-frying requires high temperature. The workers’ faces turn red because of heat. Thus if they don’t have perseverance and skill, this work cannot be done. The key is to control the fire’s temperature. Workers must adjust the time of frying depends on the changing of temperature. That’s quite hard.
The roasting of Liu An Gua Pian is another unique skill among green teas. There are three steps for producing the beautiful flavor.
Three steps in roasting: first roast, second roast (light roast), third roast. The door and window must be locked tightly. These 3 steps are the key. Especially the third step is the most difficult skill to learn in processing Liu An Gua Pian.
Being made only from mature leaves, that have had more time to accumulate and form nutrients, plus it being made only from leaves, without any stems, Liu'an Guapian reportedly has the highest nutritional level amongst all green teas.
Also, as with all green teas, the minimal processing steps means that it also retains green tea's renowned high levels of antioxidants, so make it a great tea to help reduce the possibility of forms of cancer and giving it great anti-aging cosmetic benefits.
For more information on the health benefits of Green teas, take a look at our article on Tea Health benefit.
Our Liu'an Guapian is from the home area, Qiyun Mountain in Liu'an Country, Anhui. Farms are on the high slopes of the area, all above 1,500 ft elevation (500m) surrounded by natural forest and high mountain peaks.
This Liu An Gua Pianis from Mr. Kong who have been engaged in tea field for more than ten years. He focus on providing high quality teas to tea lovers all over the world and always produces more and more natural, safe and healthy teas including the Green tea we choose : Tai Ping Hou Kui, Huang Shan Mao Feng, Xin Yang Mao Jian and Dragon Well Green Tea (Long Jing).
Mr. Kong elaborated his feeling about the tea culture: Tea Culture is a general concept which is different for people in different area. Although it is complex but there’s one thing that can be sure, that is the same as manage the enterprise, tea culture also needs management along with its quick development in the modern world.
According to the owner of the farm where this tea is grown, whose family has been in the area for generations, Liu'an Guapian started life in about 1905, when a local tea master from the Liu'an Tea Shop purchased some larger tea leaves, then innovatively removed the stems and stalks and made a new type of green tea from just the resulting cut down leaves. It was then an immediate success, which inspired all the local tea farmers to produce a tea in a similar fashion. In the following years the current involved rolling and pan drying process evolved, giving rise to Liu'an Guanpian's distinctive plump shape and complex sweet taste.
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The aroma is quite vegetal and also quite nutty, with note of green beans, spinach, chestnut, sweet sesame seed paste (Halva for those who enjoy Middle Eastern desserts) and a very delicate finish of toast. It manages to be sweet and vegetal without the clashing, in fact sniffing this tea makes me a bit hungry. The first steep, well on the first steep all I can think is 'oh my that is sweet' I even wrote that in my tasting notebook. There are notes of lychee and honeysuckle at the front, the mid taste is nicely vegetal with notes of asparagus and green bean. The Finish is a blend of apricots and sesame sesame seeds, it is very complex and light. If the rest of the steeps are this tasty I could become addicted to this tea. I got four delicious steeps out of this tea.
I have been trying all kinds of green tea and Liu An Gua Pian was not in stock anymore till the new spring tea came out this year. I am very happy to have gotten it because the tea tastes sweet and bitter and fresh. Each tea leaf is in perfect shape and it tastes so tender too. I love this tea and it have become my favor too.
Let me quickly again sum up my feelings about green tea: not much into it. However, I am always willing to try new varieties, and have found a few that I’ve liked, not enough to make them a daily habit, but they’ve been tasty. The flat bright green leaves in the sample package of this selection had a sweet grassy aroma. I steeped them for two minutes at 175 degrees as recommended in the instructions (176 degrees was recommended, but close counts). The brewed liquid was an extremely pale golden green. The steeped aroma was very faint and slightly sweet. It took several sips before my brain and taste buds could process enough flavor information to classify it. Then, I began to discern a sort of sweet, slightly spicy, kind of grassy taste. The flavor was smooth, very light, and too delicate to produce any bitterness. This tea was pleasant to drink and may be a fine late afternoon or early evening selection, but I prefer stronger and more robust flavors. To be fair, I should also mention that we are now in peak pollen and allergy season here in South Carolina, so my tasting apparatus isn’t as sensitive as it is at other times of the year. Having said that, there is nothing at all wrong with this tea’s amiable flavors. The volume just isn’t pumped up enough for my preference. This review was originally published on Steepster by Stoo in Apr, 2013. TeaVivre has added this whole review here by getting permission from Stoo.
I'm starting to make my way through Teavivre's green tea sample pack and the description on this one caught my interest as I was looking for something warm but fresh and this sounded like it might hit the mark. The dry leaf is rolled lengthwise and presents a dark spicy aroma mixed in with some warm grass notes. There were a few nutty hints as well but they were quite hidden among the rest of the scent profile. My first steeping of 30sec gave a bright, though light, green liquor that smelled of sweet, almost roasted nuts, mixed in with some lovely spicy/smokey notes. It was a warm but yet refreshing scent. The taste was actually pretty similar, roasted nuts (almost like cashews) mixed in with a light bit of spice with a lovely rich sweetness wrapped around it. The finish was slightly astringent and served as a nice counterpoint to the sweetness of the tea. And while the mouthfeel was dull and rich it was also very light and refreshing, a very unique combination. In my second cup (60sec) the bright green liquor picked up a slight floral scent which replaced the slight smokiness of the first cup, while the rest of the notes stayed pretty much the same. The floral not carried though to the flavor as well, while the rest of the flavors mellowed out considerably. The finish was also less astringent. The pale yellow-green liquor of my third cup (90sec) displayed a soft aroma; the brighter floral notes were mixed in with the sweet roasted nuts. This was quite a mellow cup, subtle in flavor but refreshing. There was still a bit of "spice" in the profile as well which added an interesting contrast to the brighter floral notes. My last cup (120sec) was even softer than the previous one in both scent and flavor. The floral notes were a nice refreshing highlight and lingered well after the finish. There's also still just a little touch of the spice left to round out the profile. This is a dynamic cup of tea, with tons of character. I loved how both the flavor and scent profiles changed and mellowed over time, as well as how refreshing this was despite the inherent dark "spiciness" of the leaf. This is definitely a tea that I could see keeping in stock for some time to come.
I fell in love with this tea last year when I bought quite a lot of it from another vender. This 2013 selection does not disappoint. It is light, mellow and a little spicy. I was happy for the Teavivre description of mellon seed because I knew it didn't taste like mellon seeds. Just a very nice clean and fresh tasting green tea.
This is the 2013 version of this tea. I used the whole sample in my Finum and my 6oz cup. That is twice the leaf and half the water I used with last years batch. I notice two big differences right away. To me the late sip reminds me of corn. I have never used that in description before. That’s cool. The other is rather than buttery, this seems thinner and has a fair amount of bite. I like it fine but pretty sure next time I will try it using my frugal method. I think I prefer it that way. Leaving the rating alone. This review was originally published on Steepster by K S in June, 2013. TeaVivre add this whole review here by getting permission from K S.
Had this as a sample - thanks fro the chance to try a unique tea! I tend to prefer teas with stringer taste, and this tea is not one of them. It does leave a cool sensation in the mouth, and a refreshed feeling. Although a sweet aftertaste lingers for quite some time.
Sipdown, 122. I have multiple reasons for drinking all of these Teavivre green teas in fairly quick succession. First because they offer a bunch of easy sipdowns, and second because I am trying to get a good sense of the types of green teas that I really enjoy. Yesterday was Bi Luo Chun, today is Liu An Gua Pian. This one is light and almost sparkly. There is a certain feel to it that is extra bright and fresh. The flavor is vegetal with very light nutty and buttery notes, but they don’t add a thickness to it like in some other greens. It’s not savory like the Bi Luo Chun but it’s not really sweet either. Just fresh. Overall I enjoy this tea but I can’t see craving it. Glad I got a chance to try it! This review was originally published on Steepster by Dinosara on July 4, 2013. TeaVivre add this whole review here by getting permission from Dinosara.
The raw leaves are beautifully green and thinly rolled. For the most part they are still intact with little to no damage and no stems/sticks are present. They have a beautiful spinach and perfume floral scent that is quite thick yet sweet. Once steeped this tea is yellow in colour and has a sweet, vegetal aroma. First Steep Flavour is thick and vegetal (broccoli, spinach) and also rather grassy. There is also a sweetness like peony. Second Steep Still very thick and vegetal but the sweetness has toned down. It has a buttery tone that makes it easy to drink and it defines the spinach flavour beautifully. Third Steep Gentle now and refreshing. Less vegetal and more floral. Toned down from the first steep but still left with enough flavour to be pleasing. Overall it's a very nice thick, vegetal green tea. Very similar to the Organic Hangzhou Tian Mu Qing Ding Green Tea - Teavivre.
This tea (2012) struck me as a lighter version of Dragonwell. It is very smooth and has subtle vegetal undertones, with no trace of bitterness. It's hard to justify the much higher price, however.
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