Decided to take a break from my daily morning puerh ritual and brew me some Dancong. It must be well over a year since I had any oolong at all so I searched my cupbord and found this one hiding in the corner, still wrapped up in a foil bag. For me Jing Tea Shop is my “go to” place for oolongs, especially Dancong. Their Milan AAA is delightful (I still have half a bag left from their 2012 Spring press) and I remember this one also being excellent. The Song Zhong Dancong is definitely one of their pricier teas…I remember paying about $50 for a 50 gram bag.
Anyway, I decided to steep 6 grams in my 130ml yixing to see how things have come along. Here are my notes…
Strong, fruity aroma from the dry leaves…still smells good. I don’t bother rinsing the leaves but do my first proper steep at roughly 10 seconds. Before sipping I smell the wet leaves…VERY fruity, acidic citrus aromas, zesty lemon? Sipping the first steep I am reminded why I always bought Dancong from Jing…it is excellent. Nice and smooth, great balance of sweet honey and citrus fruitiness, slight nutty textures, mild “dry mouth” affect that brings out more complex flavours that end up dancing on your tongue and at the back of the throat, VERY long finish.
Several steeps go by and it is more of the same…massive bursts of fruits…beginning to feel some nice energy coming from this, not really calming but more aggressive in nature. I think it’s strongest characteristic is its long finish, as all the complex flavours keep your mouth and tongue “entertained” for ages. Monitoring steeping times I feel is rather important because if you steep for too long the fruity tones negates all the returning sweetness. Good durability in this one as well…you can steep multiple times which yield the same excellent results.
So, this is an excellent example of a Dancong done right. It is just as good as I remember it to be. However, there is a slight sting in the tale. I love puerh too much now that other teas become a little insignificant. It certainly made a nice change, but come this evening I will be going back to drinking the tea that completely changed my way of thinking on what tea really is all about. In my opinion nothing will beat the joy of drinking a great, high quality puerh. It’s the little things that matter…the ritual of carefully breaking apart a cake or tuo, the differing contrasts between sheng and shu, wet and dry storage, differences between young and aged, and also the transformation that happens when a puerh suprises you after aging it for a while. I am simply addicted to puerh!
Flavors: Citrus, Fruity, Sweet