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I’m always surprised when I read a person’s comment that teas of this type don’t appeal to him or her; I have to restrain myself from ordering every Yunnan golden fleece/bud/tip from every tea purveyor on the web. The first time I had one, I was hooked like the first time I heard Bob Dylan on my parents’ stereo 40 some odd years ago. I even promote this tea to non-tea drinkers (like my wife) who don’t respond to the Assams and Ceylons that make up most blends. How can you not love the creamy, honey-sweet caramel flavors of these Yunnans?

This one from Upton is a little more lemony and peppery than some, but still retains the characteristics that make you feel like you’re drinking from the very wellspring of tea itself.

Rachel J

We seem to have similar taste in tea. I love Yunnans too and enjoyed this one myself. What are your brewing parameters to get full flavor without astringency? I am drinking Teavivre’s Dian Hong right now, and my water might have been too hot because it’s overly astringent for me though last time it wasn’t. With this Upton, I remember that I found a lower water temp to be helpful too. Let me know how you generally brew them please!

Doug F

Hi Rachel, I’m glad you found me! We do seem to have similar tastes. I haven’t had too many problems with astringency with the Dian Hongs; I brew them for 4 minutes at about 195-200 degrees. Do you use filtered water? I have a nice filtration system because our town water is kind of stinky. Maybe that’s a factor.

Rachel J

Thanks, Doug. I think I’m overly sensitive to astringency and bitterness. Funny because I don’t recall having these issues when I drank a lot of tea from 2006-2009. I use filtered NYC tap water which I’ve compared to spring water, and I think it couldn’t be the water. So, I am finding that I have to do no more than 3 minutes and no hotter than 190F to get the Dian Hongs to work for me. That seems to be the sweet spot.

Rachel J

Also wondering if you could recommend a good relatively inexpensive Dian Hong that is a good representation of classic Yunnan flavor. I really like this Upton and the Teavivre but am wondering what you think since you have probably tried more of them than I. I used to love Adagio’s Yunnan Gold, but now I don’t think it’s as good as these. Thanks in advance! Your tasting notes are very well written, and I’ve been enjoying them. :)

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Rachel J

We seem to have similar taste in tea. I love Yunnans too and enjoyed this one myself. What are your brewing parameters to get full flavor without astringency? I am drinking Teavivre’s Dian Hong right now, and my water might have been too hot because it’s overly astringent for me though last time it wasn’t. With this Upton, I remember that I found a lower water temp to be helpful too. Let me know how you generally brew them please!

Doug F

Hi Rachel, I’m glad you found me! We do seem to have similar tastes. I haven’t had too many problems with astringency with the Dian Hongs; I brew them for 4 minutes at about 195-200 degrees. Do you use filtered water? I have a nice filtration system because our town water is kind of stinky. Maybe that’s a factor.

Rachel J

Thanks, Doug. I think I’m overly sensitive to astringency and bitterness. Funny because I don’t recall having these issues when I drank a lot of tea from 2006-2009. I use filtered NYC tap water which I’ve compared to spring water, and I think it couldn’t be the water. So, I am finding that I have to do no more than 3 minutes and no hotter than 190F to get the Dian Hongs to work for me. That seems to be the sweet spot.

Rachel J

Also wondering if you could recommend a good relatively inexpensive Dian Hong that is a good representation of classic Yunnan flavor. I really like this Upton and the Teavivre but am wondering what you think since you have probably tried more of them than I. I used to love Adagio’s Yunnan Gold, but now I don’t think it’s as good as these. Thanks in advance! Your tasting notes are very well written, and I’ve been enjoying them. :)

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I love tea and living in a place that is cold or cool nine months of the year, tea is a constant source of warmth and education. I always drink tea straight and rarely drink flavored teas or Tisanes, except for the occasional Rooibos. I’m a proud father of two young boys, an avid skier, motorcyclist, reader, and runner. I have a doctorate in English (dissertation on Emily Dickinson.)

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