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  • “February Sipdown Prompt – a tea that makes you feel cozy Both Da Hong Pao and Dong Ding teas are very cozy to me. I am surprised that I have not reviewed this one yet! This was a gift from...” Read full tasting note

From Bellocq Tea Atelier

Da Hong Pao, which translates to “Big Red Robe,” is the most famous wu long harvested in Wu Yi Mountain. This yan cha, or ‘rock tea’, makes a great statement; rich with a flourish of floral notes and complex signature minerality. Bold notes of cinnamon compliment a rich, toasty element reminiscent of a wholesome rusk enriched with barley flour and Tasmanian leatherwood honey. As with any celebrated Chinese tea, having the opportunity to drink a high-grade selection is a transformative experience.

This exceptional Da Hong Pao is sourced from a small family garden in the Wu Yi mountains of Fujian. This tea is purchased in small quantities and is a limited edition selection.

In the 1980’s Da Hong Pao was successfully cultivated artificially, and the asexually reproducing Da Hong Pao maintained the characteristics of the original thousand year old tree. The processing technology of the leaves is very fine and includes sun drying, killing the green, greening, frying, initial kneading, re-frying, re-kneading, baking, sorting, cooling, sorting, and so forth. It is an involved process of traditional craftsmanship.

The term ‘Rock Tea’, or Yancha (yan ‘rock’ cha ‘tea’) refers to oolong teas from the Wuyi Mountains. The terrain of this mountainous region is rocky, and the terroir imparts a distinct mineral note to the teas.

According to some, in early spring, the camellia buds of Da Hong Pao germinate, erupting in a dazzling display of red. From a distance, the hillsides appear to be covered in a “big red robe”, hence the name.

Tasting notes: Cinnamon ~ Honeysuckle Blossom ~ Mineral ~ Leatherwood Honey

Origin: Wu Yi Shan, Fujian Province, China

Harvest: April-May 2022

Elevation: 600m.

About Bellocq Tea Atelier View company

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1 Tasting Note

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February Sipdown Prompt – a tea that makes you feel cozy

Both Da Hong Pao and Dong Ding teas are very cozy to me. I am surprised that I have not reviewed this one yet! This was a gift from Superanna.

Yesterday afternoon I felt like continuing my celebration. I chose three chocolates and this tea, and used a scent cup to get the full sensory experience of this tea.

Honestly, as I sat there inhaling the aroma from the scent cup, I felt that I could stop there and say I had enjoyed a great tea experience. It smelled so good. As I cast about in my mind for how to describe what I was smelling, I finally settled on cinnamon rolls baking in the oven, nearly done, not too much cinnamon. Or a sweet bread, warm and waiting to be lightly glazed. How lovely that I het to drink it, too!

The tea was clear and of medium body. There is a light cinnamon note, a hint of minerality, and well-rounded flavor.

Second steep got the scent cup as well, and this time the freshly baked sweet bread has stepped back a bit and the minerality has come forward, like a hint of rou gui, just a little rock oolong peeking through. The change in the aroma is reflected in the flavor with mineral notes replacing some of the sweetness. It is by no means less enjoyable.

A third steep was made but I did not use the scent cup for this one. It is much the same as the second steep and I think that a fourth steep would not do this tea justice today. I ended my session. I want to remember you like this, Da Hong Pao.

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