Classic "Mi Lan Xiang" Dan Cong Oolong Tea * Spring 2017

Tea type
Oolong Tea
Oolong Tea Leaves
Almond, Butter, Cannabis, Caramel, Cherry, Cream, Earth, Fruity, Geranium, Grass, Green Beans, Herbaceous, Honey, Lychee, Mineral, Nutmeg, Orange Blossom, Orchid, Peach, Plum, Spinach, Sugarcane, Vanilla, Violet, Wood
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Bulk, Loose Leaf
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Edit tea info Last updated by eastkyteaguy
Average preparation
6 g 4 oz / 118 ml

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  • “Okay, I’m finally back. This schedule is killing me. Anyway, this was my most recent sipdown. I had to spend more time with this tea than I planned because I was never able to convince myself that...” Read full tasting note

From Yunnan Sourcing

Mi Lan Xiang (aka Honey Orchid Aroma) Dan Cong is the most well-known Dan Cong style. Bai Ye varietal is used and was expertly processed over a period of four months to give it a special thick, sweet and floral (orchid) aroma. The leaves are larger and broader than may other varietals and the finished dry leaf is a deep brown color. The brewed leaves are also more brown (and less green) than most other Dan Cong oolongs. This higher degree of oxidation due to roasting brings out the delicious honey and orchid taste. When you experience the wonderful taste keep in mind it’s all due to the skill of the master who lovingly processed this tea into something so special and delicious!

Our Classic “Mi Lan Xiang” is a medium level of roast, with a robust taste of fruit and honey, and a lingering Orchid taste/aroma. It’s grown naturally at an altitude of 550 meters in the Wu Dong Mountains.

This is a medium level of roast, classic style of processing.

April 2017 picking

Zhongshan Village, Wu Dong Mountains, Guangdong Province of China

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1 Tasting Note

1031 tasting notes

Okay, I’m finally back. This schedule is killing me. Anyway, this was my most recent sipdown. I had to spend more time with this tea than I planned because I was never able to convince myself that I had the best handle on it. Normally, Mi Lan Xiang does not throw me for a loop, but this one I struggled with immensely. I’m still not entirely confident about the numerical score I’m giving it.

I prepared this tea gongfu style. After the rinse, I steeped 6 grams of loose tea leaves in 4 ounces of 203 F water for 7 seconds. This infusion was chased by 16 additional infusions. Steep times for these infusions were as follows: 9 seconds, 12 seconds, 16 seconds, 20 seconds, 25 seconds, 30 seconds, 40 seconds, 50 seconds, 1 minute, 1 minute 15 seconds, 1 minute 30 seconds, 2 minutes, 3 minutes, 5 minutes, 7 minutes, and 10 minutes.

Prior to the rinse, the dry tea leaves produced aromas of honey, peach, orange blossom, sugarcane, and orchid. After the rinse, I detected new aromas of roasted almond and grass that were accompanied by subtler scents of geranium, spinach, and cannabis. The first infusion introduced stronger spinach and cannabis scents, though the spinach scent was the more dominant of the two. In the mouth, the tea liquor offered notes of honey, peach, roasted almond, orange blossom, and orchid that were underscored by hints of pomegranate, butter, grass, cream, geranium, and cannabis. The subsequent infusions quickly coaxed out aromas of violet, pomegranate, cherry, plum, butter, and lychee as well as subtle scents of earth, wintergreen, and wood. Stronger and more immediate butter, cream, geranium, grass, and pomegranate impressions appeared in the mouth alongside new notes of minerals, sour cherry, wood, plum, lemon zest, violet, lychee, caramel, and nutmeg. I also detected hints of wintergreen, watermelon, spinach, and sweet potato. As the tea faded, the liquor settled around somewhat amplified spinach notes and impressions of minerals, butter, grass, caramel, and wood that were backed by hints of honey, violet, sugarcane, roasted almond, sweet potato, pomegranate, and lychee. Bizarrely, green bean and vanilla hints appeared just before the tea liquor ceased to yield much flavor.

There was a lot for me to unpack with this tea. It yielded the expected Mi Lan Xiang aromas and flavors in spades, and though I have not mentioned it prior to this point in the review, the tea liquor displayed nice body and texture in the mouth. Unfortunately, there were some odd, predominantly vegetal aromas and flavors that were also apparent to varying degrees from the get-go that never seemed to be fully integrated into the whole and came off as distracting in a number of places. Overall, I would say the good outweighed the bad with this tea, but in my opinion, it was still something of a flawed offering. I feel there is no shortage of better Mi Lan Xiang out there.

Flavors: Almond, Almond, Butter, Butter, Cannabis, Cannabis, Caramel, Caramel, Cherry, Cream, Cream, Earth, Earth, Fruity, Fruity, Geranium, Geranium, Grass, Grass, Green Beans, Green Beans, Herbaceous, Herbaceous, Honey, Honey, Lychee, Mineral, Mineral, Nutmeg, Nutmeg, Orange Blossom, Orange Blossom, Orchid, Orchid, Peach, Peach, Plum, Spinach, Spinach, Sugarcane, Sugarcane, Vanilla, Vanilla, Violet, Violet, Wood, Wood

6 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

Why the hell does Steepster constantly double the flavors I list? I seem to be the only person this happens to consistently, and it does not matter how many times I try to fix it because nothing I do ever works.


Yunnan Sourcing’s Dan Congs tend to be a mixed bag for me as well. For the most part they’re good but rough around the edges.

Mastress Alita

I think that is the first time I’ve seen the doubled flavors list like that… sure would be nice if we had any sort of upkeep/moderation for all the bugs around here, but alas… rolls eyes sadly


I have similar experiences with YS’ Dan Cong offerings. It’s either hit or MEH.


Are the price points at least comparable to quality or is one taking a gamble purchasing dancong from YS?


derk, I would say the price points are fairly comparable to quality with YS, maybe just slightly inflated. I know there have been a few stinks about the prices of their pu’erh increasing, but honestly, I don’t buy a ton of pu’erh these days, and when I do, I buy cheap stuff in an effort to unearth hidden gems or decent drinkers for sick days. That being said, the quality of their offerings will obviously vary both from tea to tea and year to year. I know I have seen positive reviews for this tea elsewhere, but it wasn’t for me. Decent to great Mi Lan Xiang is not all that difficult to find since it’s one of the Dancong oolongs that everyone seems to carry. What-Cha had a really nice one several years ago, and I recall liking one of the Mi Lan Xiang Verdant offered too. I even found one of the other Mi Lan Xiang Dancongs sourced by Yunnan Sourcing in the spring of 2017 to be better than this one. With regard to YS Dancong oolongs, I find that I tend to like their King of Duck Shit, Ling Tou Village Bai Ye, Wu Dong Ba Xian, Zhi Lan Xiang, and Cao Lan from year to year. The last time I tried their Da Wu Ye, it was really nice too. I know a lot of people like their Chou Shi offerings as well.


I didn’t care for this one… Thank you for your great review on it. I had it gongfu as well, and your explanation of some of the bizarre notes is probably the same reason why.

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