Panyang Congou

Tea type
Black Tea
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Dill, Earth, Hay, Honey, Malt, Sweet
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Edit tea info Last updated by Ryan Burress
Average preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 4 min, 0 sec 9 oz / 266 ml

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43 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Tea for the morning here. I read over some of the previous tasting notes and a few people seemed to think this tea was really boring but I like mine. It’s good when you’re in the mood...” Read full tasting note
    amyoh2 2816 tasting notes
  • “Ah, now I am back to this one as I am wont to drink my tea – plain. This has all the notes you expect to find in a Fujian black tea, but softer. A little roasty, the barest suggestion of...” Read full tasting note
    ashmanra 2215 tasting notes
  • “My morning tea. Good stuff. Brewed in my jumbo mug, but next time a small teapot. I finally decided it was time for a smaller teapot. My current one is 45 oz, which is perfect for tea for many,...” Read full tasting note
    SimplyJenW 985 tasting notes
  • “Oooh, this is good. Really, really good. It smells and tastes just like my beloved Emperor’s Red (which I couldn’t find online anymore) and this is a much better price. It is slightly...” Read full tasting note
    mrawlins2 1015 tasting notes

From Harney & Sons

A wonderful tea made in Northern Fujian Province (like Golden Monkey). It is a wonderful blend of medium body teas with toasty flavors. Try this one when you want a tea with more heft.

Those who prefer full-bodied British Legacy teas will find much to like in Panyang Congou. From the same area in Fujian province, Panyang Congou is a close relative of Panyang Golden Needle and Golden Monkey but slightly older and made in a more traditional style, with the least amount of tips. Congou is a corruption of the Chinese words Gong Fu, or Kung Fu, which mean “Highest Mastery.” A tea trade classification for Chinese black teas with this particular twisted shape, the word refers to the masterful skill required to produce the teas by hand. Today, the teas are made almost entirely by machine. The leaves are expertly rolled into a tight twist before slowly oxidizing to take on the fruity but unsweetened flavors of baked apples.

About Harney & Sons View company

Since 1983 Harney & Sons has been the source for fine teas. We travel the globe to find the best teas and accept only the exceptional. We put our years of experience to work to bring you the best Single-Estate teas, and blends beyond compare.

43 Tasting Notes

2816 tasting notes

Tea for the morning here. I read over some of the previous tasting notes and a few people seemed to think this tea was really boring but I like mine. It’s good when you’re in the mood for something gentle and sweet, I like the cocoa flavors and the non-astringent quality of this. This is a really nice everyday tea for me personally…. see previous notes

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I definitely like this one, but it is kind of similar to Queen Catherine. The Queen wins. ;)


I’ve had Queen Catherine a few times but it is not one of my favorites. Different strokes for different folks, I guess. :)

Scott B

Is Congou another name for Keemun? Or are they different types of tea?


Scott – I don’t think they are the same but I’m no expert on chinese tea by far…


I think Congou means the same as Gongfu, masterfully made.


Scott-they are diffrerent teas with different qualities.

Amy-I like this tea too. I have the Panyang Congou Selecy from Upton-very goo, but I can’t find it! :-// ‘Too much tea on my hands….too much tea on my ……………………….’

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2215 tasting notes

Ah, now I am back to this one as I am wont to drink my tea – plain. This has all the notes you expect to find in a Fujian black tea, but softer. A little roasty, the barest suggestion of smoke, a little nutty. I think for anyone who likes a Keemun for breakfast but they are wanting an afternoon tea or a soft and gentle wake up, this would be a good choice.

This is the final pot from my sample that I bought from Harney and Sons. I just saw the note where SimplyJenW mixed hers with Rose Scented and I am kicking myself for to trying it that way. I love their Rose tea mixed in with Queen Catherine and with Palm Court and I bet it would be delicious in this, also! I agree with Jen, I must always have Rose Scented on hand as a mix in!

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985 tasting notes

My morning tea. Good stuff. Brewed in my jumbo mug, but next time a small teapot.

I finally decided it was time for a smaller teapot. My current one is 45 oz, which is perfect for tea for many, or traditional brewing of tea for iced (it is about the same volume as my favorite glass pitcher). Next week, my lime For Life 24 oz pot should be here. I went with the For life rather than the Chatsford because the infuser is all stainless, and parts of the infuser on the Chatsford are plastic. Can’t wait!

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I love my Forlife pot. I think you will like it, too. I also have Beehouse 22 ounce pots and they are great as well. Their lid comes off if you want to heat in the microwave, the small Forlife pot lid does not. The larger ones do, though. I have been thinking about getting one of the larger ones for me, I already bought one for a friend and she uses it ALL the time! New tea stuff! EEEEE!


Oh, and I just ordered another sample of this tea. I can’t remember what it tasted like! It should be here in a day or two.


I have the 10 oz brew cup that has the little cover for work and I love it since I’m such a resteeper. I raved about it so much that my husband asked me to get him one. Now he is hooked on it! I love the stainless infuser!!


Oh I meant to say the Forlife 10 oz blah blah blah!


@ashmanra…The small For Life pot just has a silicone seal and the infuser comes out, so the lid could go in the microwave, but I’d probably leave it out. I love my large one…it is in my avatar!

@JacquelineM….One day I might have a brew in cup, but for now I use a basket in a jumbo mug with a bread plate over the top. Kind of the same concept, just bigger!


That is exactly the pot I bought for my friend. Even the same color!

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1015 tasting notes

Oooh, this is good. Really, really good. It smells and tastes just like my beloved Emperor’s Red (which I couldn’t find online anymore) and this is a much better price. It is slightly smoked, unsweet cocoa with a hint of fruitiness. So good I am lost for words.

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Yes, I can’t find Emperer’s Red anymore either!


Emperor – whoops!


I know, its so sad! I was going to order some. I guess it’s better to have loved a tea and lost it, lol.

Donna A

Really like this one too. Could drink it every day.

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769 tasting notes

Holy smokes, Batman!

I got a sample of this to share with a co-worker who also likes the Golden Monkey/Yunnan types of teas. Made up a pot this afternoon and at first sniff I wondered if they’d put Lapsang in the bag by mistake. I just can’t do Lapsangs. That smell of charcoal and smoke – nothing my brain thinks I need to be drinking. I made myself take a sip and good grief – there’s a whopping ton of smoke in here!

There may have been other notes to get but I couldn’t get past the heavy, ashy smoke. Co-worker also thought it was smoke heavy but he didn’t find it quite as unpleasant as I did. I would not call this a medium body nor is there anything subtle about it. As it cooled off I could get a bit of sweetness but it was a deeply smoky sweetness. From the descriptions and reviews here and on the Harney site, I was pretty disappointed in this one. I’m glad I only got a sample and I’m glad we used it all making a large pot of it. I hate to throw tea away.

Rating is low not because I didn’t like it personally, but because I don’t feel that it measured up to the description.

205 °F / 96 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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1112 tasting notes

I’m getting tons of honey flavors. It has a great body to it, but it’s not like an Assam – it’s not blustery, it’s more of a refined taste. I sipped it plain, but am enjoying it with a little half and half and organic sugar. My husband said “I think this is my favorite unflavored black we’ve had!” I thought I was an Assam person, but perhaps I need to explore more fine Chinese black teas!!

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1328 tasting notes

Okay, so I failed Sample Week on the very last day, but only because the sample I had done turned out to be one I had tried before, and I never got around to doing another one. But if it hadn’t been one I’d tried before, I would have made it, so I still say I almost succeeded.

Anyway, Sample Week over, I can now get back to some of my other larger samples, such as the ones I received recently from the lovely QuiltGuppy. Including OH JOY a Panyang. Or Tanyang. Or Tan Yang. Or Pan Yang. Or whatever you prefer. Same difference.

I’ve been out of my favourite Tan Yang Te Ji (♥) for a while now, so this sample was a really well treasured one. Unfortunately, though, I will have to say that the TeaSpring one is still my absolute favourite.

This one seems slightly thinner, slightly less powerful than the Te Ji of TeaSpring. It’s almost but not quite the same. And what I’m really looking for in a Tan Yang is pretty much the exact flavour profile of the Te Ji.

That said, it is still an awesome tea. By default, really. All Tan Yangs are awesome, and all Fujian blacks are wonderful. It’s amazingly sweet naturally, a mildly fruity sort of sweetness rather than the more grainy sweetness that we see in for example Keemuns. I’m not getting the hint of pseudo-smoke out of this one, unfortunately. That’s also part of what makes the aforementioned Te Ji so perfect for me. Instead there is something quite floral about it, which I believe is very close to the same thing.

“Wait a minute, how can pseudo-smoke notes and floral notes be the same?” I hear you ask.

“Opposite sides of the same coin,” says I. I believe it’s the same ‘bit’ of the flavour profile that creates that pseudo-smoky or floral note in the flavour. If it’s vague and delicate it comes across as floral, but if it is allowed to develop more and grow stronger, it turns into something more prickly and aggressive. Like the smoke note. Most often, though, we end up somewhere in between where some people will find it floral, some will find it lightly smoky and some will be unable to decide what they think it’s most like. This characteristic, I think, is more common in black teas than most people realise.

So yeah, this is leaning more towards the floral end of the spectrum whereas I tend to prefer the other end.

It’s a good tea. Sweet, floral, medium strength. Worth oodles of points in my book, but not as good as the Tan Yang Te Ji.

Not at first impression anyway. (And to be honest, one brewing isn’t really representative basis for comparison. I retain the right to change my mind, fat lot of good it will do me as this one isn’t available to me without using kindly Steepsterites as middle-men anyway)

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166 tasting notes

Another delicious black tea from the Northern Fujian Province. The dry leaf has dark colored leaves with some golden tips and a nice aroma a bit like raisins. The drink is a little honeyed, a little fruity, and smooth, with medium body. It is easy going with zero bitterness and low astringency. 2 1/2 grams was perfect for an 8 oz cup. I would order this again-it is something I could drink every day, and I suspect it would be great cold as well.

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I’m discovering that I love anything with Fujian in its name or background info.

Donna A

Gmathis, same here. And this tea is quite affordable.


95% of all my favourite unflavoured black teas are out of Fujian. Fujian tea growers can do no wrong in my book. :)

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257 tasting notes

This tea is from the TTB. I am not totally certain it is Harney & Sons. The tea came in a small attractive black tin with a picture and an elegant description: “A simple Chinese black tea that has been made over 200 years. The brew is a nice easy-going tea that is round in the mouth. It is a favorite at our Tasting Room where its simple charms are appreciated.” These words do not come up via a Google search, although the first two sentence do come up as a description of tea sold at the Cincinnatian Hotel for afternoon tea.

This small black tin resembles a miniature Harney & Sons tin and has the same type of black tape so I’m going to assume that it is likely to be a Harney & Sons tea with different and creative packaging.
I took it from the TTB because there was so little. It was a very skimpy teaspoon.
With tea, I am like Julia Child with cooking wines and liquers. I tend to add more than the “recipe” calls for. I taste the dry leaf; I fool around a lot. The dry leaves here were about 3/4 of what I would use for one serving. Keeping that in mind, I used less water and did not make a full cup.

The results are pretty decent. It seems to be a very smooth, medium-bodied “basic black” with a pleasant aroma. Perhaps its biggest virtue is that it is not offensive in any way, but it also lacks some of those distinctive properties that make me fall in love with certain blends. I wish I had some more of this to muse upon.

4 min, 30 sec

Yes, it’s a Harney :) They sell a black tea sampler which has different packaging with the small black tins:


Yea, it’s Harney’s. I love this one. I just ordered 1/2 lb. actually its so delicious and satisfying and medium bodied.


Okay that did it I’m adding this to my shopping list I’ve been meaning to order a big tin of Florence but wasn’t sure what I’d buy with guess I know now.

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120 tasting notes

A sample of this came to me via the ever lovely Quilt Guppy. H&S says this is tea with heft.
That is exactly my take on it. I found it rich, full, and somewhat nutty. There was also a hint of dried hay. I normally would not find hay appetizing, but in this case, contemplating as I always end up with a cup of black tea, my mind yields to relaxing thoughts of the country, hay meadows on a late summers day. Thanks QG, you always make it interesting.


I don’t know if dired hay appeals to me, buy hay notes could work. I am from the country and the smell of hay is just so sweet and delightful.

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