Da Hong Pao
Full bodied yet smooth with rich, earthy flavors of brown sugar, malt, pipe tobacco, and spice balanced by mild nuances of citrus zest and stone fruit. Rich and complex with mild tannins.
Da Hong Pao is a renowned Oolong grown in the Wuyi Mountains in the northern part of the Fujian region of China. Teas grown in this area are known as “Rock Teas” and gain much of their flavor from the rocky, mineral-rich soil of the mountainside. Because of this type of terrain, plants from this area have a lower yield when compared to other regions. The name Da Hong Pao literally translates to “Big Red Robe”. The legend behind this name is that the mother of a Ming Dynasty emperor was supposedly cured of an illness by a certain tea, and that emperor sent great red robes to clothe the four bushes from which that tea originated. Three of those bushes survive to this day. Teas from these original plants can cost up to thirty times their weight in gold. In more recent years, cuttings have been taken from these to produce similar teas from genetically identical plants.
Recommendations: Use 2 heaping tsp. (or 2 grams) of leaves per 6 oz. of water; heat fresh water to about 195ºF (bring to rolling boil, then rest for 30 seconds before steeping); steep for 3 minutes.
Or: Use 1 gram of leaves per 1 ounce of water in a or gaiwan or small covered vessel; heat fresh water to about 195ºF; steep for 30 seconds. Add 30 seconds per extra steeping. Good for several infusions.