I made a big Floating Leaves order over the Black Friday weekend, so the least I can do is finish a few of the teas from my last order in 2021 before my haul arrives. This Dong Ding is from either spring 2021 or winter 2020. I steeped 6 g of leaf in a 120 ml teapot at 195F for 25, 20, 25, 30, 30, 30, 45, 60, 90, 120, and 240 seconds, plus some long, uncounted steeps.
The dry aroma is of walnuts, hazelnuts, roast, and flowers. The first steep has notes of nuts, cream, banana bread, honey, minerals, grass, and char. The next steep has more banana and nuts, plus honey and narcissus/orchid florals. The roast is on the lighter side, and the body of the tea is thick. The next couple steeps feature nuts, graham cracker, roast, pine, florals, and grass. Steeps five and six are a little more grassy and vegetal, though they still have a nice, round honey and roasty flavour. Subsequent steeps are a bit more nutty and roasty, with floral and grassy undertones. The final long steeps have notes of graham cracker, roast, nuts, butter, minerals, and wood.
I want to like Dong Dings more than I actually do, as I find most of them too roasty. This one was on the lighter side, however, and I thought it had more character than some others. The florals and banana bread were a nice break from the roast, and it never started tasting like overbrewed coffee, as some other roasted teas can. I’m glad I tried this tea, but don’t regret leaving it out of my 2022 order.
Flavors: Bread, Butter, Char, Cream, Floral, Graham Cracker, Grass, Hazelnut, Honey, Mineral, Narcissus, Nutty, Orchid, Pine, Roasted, Vegetal, Walnut, Wood