Bi Luo Chun tea (Green Snail Spring)

What is Bi Luo Chun tea?

Bi Luo Chun tea (Pi Lo Chun, Biluochun, Green Snail Spring) is another prized Chinese green tea. This one originates from Dongting Mountains in the Jiangsu province. Fruit trees are often planted among the tea shrubs. In early spring, when these trees are in full bloom, new tender tea leaves and little buds absorb the surrounding fruity-floral flavors. This is the time to harvest Bi Luo Chun until the spring rain in April. Only one leaf and a bud is plucked. Harvesting and total production is done in the traditional artisan way, by hand only.

What’s in the name?

Bi Luo Chun tea is inseparably linked with the freshness of spring. Named after a small green snail that heralds the arrival of spring in China, Bi Luo Chun is picked in March, capturing the scents and colors of the season in its green tinted, distinctively curled leaves. Another name of this tea is ‘Xia Sha Ren Xiang’ (Astounding Fragrance). Chinese folklore talks about a young girl who ran out of space in her basket while picking the tea. She put the tea leaves between her breasts instead. The aroma of the fresh tea warmed by her body “astonished” the girl.  Or so the legend goes. Anyway, the tea is tremendously fragrant, with a fruity-floral aroma.

Tasting notes

Bi Luo Chun tea leaves exude fragrances reminiscent of fresh spring mountain air, punctuated by dandelion greens, fresh cucumbers, and even hints of lettuce and spinach. This range of herbaceous scents is often overlaid by fruity notes, including “peachy” and “apricot“. Bi Luo Chun is thus a complex tea, “fragrant”, “flowery”, “delicate”, “light”, yet “fully expanded in your mouth”.

Tea tips

Authentic and premium Bi Luo Chun can be identified by soft green leaves with white tips, and the existence of floral and fruity notes in their fragrance. Until recently, Bi Luo Chun has been only produced in Jiangsu. Nowadays, it also comes from Zhejiang and Sichuan provinces and even Taiwan. Although the tea purists might argue that only Jiangsu Bi Luo Chun is the real thing, in reality, it’s a good idea to judge tea by the taste, not by the label.

 

(see our top 3 picks below)


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Where to buy Chinese green tea. Top 3 tea stores online.

Teavivre

Teavivre ships their fresh and authentic Chinese teas directly from China. Have no fear - they offer free shipping on orders over $30.

Adagio Teas

Everything for everyone. Loose leaf Chinese green staples like Gunpowder and Dragonwell tea. Some rare varieties from Fujian and Anhui mountain farms for advanced tea drinkers. Plus, Adagio’s pyramid tea bag is a perfect combination of high quality tea with the convenience of a disposable teabag.

Stash Tea

Finest Chinese loose leaf green teas as well as some wholesome green goodness in casual teabags here. Organic and Fair Trade certified options available for those of us who appreciate both quality and social responsibility.


Top 3 best Bi Luo Chun teas to buy online

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Pi Lo Chun

Pi Lo Chun

Green tea from the Jiangsu province of China. Pi Lo Chun (sometimes written biluochun) is made from the finest tender buds, gathered and processed exclusively by hand. Perfumy and sweet floral, with a full body and slight earthiness. Lingering, aromatic finish and interestingly floral-smoky. Pi Lo ...

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Bi Luo Chun Green Tea (Pi Lo Chun)

Bi Luo Chun Green Tea (Pi Lo Chun)

Made only from tea leaf tips in an involved process that results in it having a tight rolled up shape, Bi Luo Chun is renowned for its strong fruity aroma and mellow flavour.  A plantation growing Bi Luo Chun is amazing to visit, with the tea plants mixed in with a variety of fragrant fruit trees ...

1
Bi Luo Chun Green Tea

Bi Luo Chun Green Tea

Pinglin, New Taipei City Green tea. WINTER 2014 HARVEST - From the famed Pinglin tea region in Taiwan comes this renowned green tea named after an early harbinger of spring, the small green snail. Bi Luo Chong is lush and long in appearance with multi-colored green twisted leaves in tones of olive, ...

1

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