Pi Lo Chun, also known as Bi Luo Chun or Bi Lu Chun in Chinese, is a famous rare tea that originated from two mountains in the west part of Dongting in Jiangsu province, China. The name “Spring Green Snail” was given to it by Emperor Kang Xi in the seventeenth or eighteenth century due to its appearance when steeped, resembling tiny green snails. Today, Dongting remains the prime producer of high-quality Pi Lo Chun tea, which is made available to tea enthusiasts by TenRen.
Growing Conditions and Cultivation
The tea bushes used for Pi Lo Chun are planted between peach, plum, and apricot trees, which provide a fruity fragrance to the tea leaves. The mountains of Dongting, where the tea is grown, are covered with clouds and mist due to evaporating water from the nearby lakes, creating an ideal environment for the cultivation of high-quality tea. The unique combination of growing conditions and cultivation practices contributes to the special aroma and flavor of Pi Lo Chun tea.
Harvesting and Production
The tea leaves used for Pi Lo Chun are picked only once a year, during mid-March to mid-April, when the leaves are at their peak. The leaves are handpicked for just the leaf and bud, making the tea-making process extremely labor-intensive. The tea leaves undergo a stringent selection process to ensure high quality and are carefully processed to maintain their unique flavor and aroma. It takes around 60,000 to 80,000 leaf-bud sets to produce one pound of finished Pi Lo Chun tea, making it a rare and prized tea variety.
One of Pi Lo Chun’s unique properties is that when infused, the tea leaves slowly float down the cup like falling snowflakes, instead of remaining at the top of the water. This mesmerizing effect, combined with its delicate aroma and refreshing flavor, makes Pi Lo Chun a sought-after tea variety among tea enthusiasts. Due to its limited production and strict quality standards, Pi Lo Chun is not widely available, adding to its exclusivity and rarity.
Pi Lo Chun, the “Spring Green Snail” tea, is a rare and delicate tea variety that originated from two mountains in the west part of Dongting in Jiangsu province, China. Its unique growing conditions, cultivation practices, and strict quality standards contribute to its exceptional aroma, flavor, and visual appeal. With its mesmerizing effect when infused and its limited production, Pi Lo Chun is a prized tea variety that is sought after by tea enthusiasts worldwide.