Taiwanese Dong Ding Oolong

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Oolong Tea
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Edit tea info Last updated by pavl
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200 °F / 93 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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27 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Another offering from the February TOMC, this one is more like sourdough bread & green beans, LOL. I enjoy oolongs, although my taste tends more towards the roasty ones. The Tieguanyin &...” Read full tasting note
  • “My first dong ding oolong experience was with Teavivre’s, and it went very badly. Mostly, I oversteeped it (and probably overleafed as well) and it tasted awful. I still have at least one sample...” Read full tasting note
  • “SIPDOWN! soooo yeah this is a green oolong. which means it tastes like that taste that i’m not a fan of. However, i can appreciate that those of you who like green oolongs would likely find this...” Read full tasting note
  • “Sipdown, 221. I can’t believe this one doesn’t have more tasting notes! I suppose it is pretty new but there are very few thoughts on this one posted here. I decided to go ahead and use my sample...” Read full tasting note

From Verdant Tea

Taiwanese oolong is an incredible and worthwhile counterpoint to the Tieguanyin growing cross the straights in Anxi. While mainland oolongs tend to be more floral, Taiwanese oolongs edge towards savory. In love with the unique taste, we are pleased to have found this standout example despite difficult growing conditions in Taiwan this past year.

The wet leaf aroma is like being in a small bakery with rising whole wheat walnut currant bread in the oven and redwood bark’s warm smell wafting though an open window. The first steepings start with a bright raspberry tartness followed by a darker note of flax and spicy green peppercorn. These initial flavors swell and then diminish leaving a sweet whipped cream pound cake aftertaste.

Later steepings expand upon the spicy flavor with the sweetness of red bell peppers and the savory satisfying taste of fried cactus paddle. The aftertaste moves towards sweet corn bread and lingers long after the tea is gone.

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27 Tasting Notes

3294 tasting notes

Another offering from the February TOMC, this one is more like sourdough bread & green beans, LOL. I enjoy oolongs, although my taste tends more towards the roasty ones. The Tieguanyin & Dong Ding types & other ‘greener’ types are nice from time to time, mostly as a change of pace from the other teas I drink. Anyway, this has been a nice cup, I think I have enough to drink it one more time.

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6106 tasting notes

My first dong ding oolong experience was with Teavivre’s, and it went very badly. Mostly, I oversteeped it (and probably overleafed as well) and it tasted awful. I still have at least one sample pack, so should really give it another shot some time.

Anyhow, in the spirit of trying all the teas, I picked up a sample pack of this from Verdant a while ago. And since I felt like some straight tea tonight (and am planning a teensy Verdant order in the near future), I figured I should make some progress on a few sample packs tonight!

I approximately followed Verdant’s instructions for this tea: 1 tbsp of tea, 8 oz. of water, a brief rinse, and then a 30-second infusion. I thought it would be a bit weak, but the aroma seems to indicate otherwise – it’s a bit toasty and a bit florally-green… definitely intriguing! The first sip is lightly sweet and floral, kind of like TGY but without that turpentine smell/overly green flavour. The second sip (this tea is a bit too hot for my liking, still) brings out more sweetness, and is a bit more vegetal, but also has more oolong aftertaste. I keep spying bits of Dinosara’s note as I’m writing, and I agree that it’s quite savoury. I’m enjoying it, although I’m not sure it’s quite my favourite sort of oolong (and what that is, other than good milk oolongs, I can’t really tell you quite yet to be honest.)

I’m interested to see where the next few infusions take me, but this is certainly pretty tasty so far!

ETA: Like the other oolong, the second infusion of this one (1 min) was pretty tasty, but the second infusion (2 min) tastes a bit astringent and oversteeped. Perhaps should have gone with 1.5min. I’ll try a fourth infusion tomorrow to see what happens.

Boiling 0 min, 30 sec

I liked this one a lot! Probably will pick up some in a future order.

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15123 tasting notes

SIPDOWN! soooo yeah this is a green oolong. which means it tastes like that taste that i’m not a fan of. However, i can appreciate that those of you who like green oolongs would likely find this to be a really nice oolong. So i won’t rate it. But it’s a whole bunch of “meh” to me lol

Terri HarpLady

LOL! I actually enjoy a good green oolong, although I haven’t been drinking them much lately. I have some of this one too. I


I have room for maybe 1 or 2 green oolongs in my cupboard along with maybe 1-2 green teas. everything else is black, rooibos, honeybush, puerh lol

Terri HarpLady

I have a bunch of them, from staying in verdant’s tea clubs for so long, along with all kinds of other things. If I had to narrow my ‘collection’ of teas down (damn near impossible), it would be blacks, wuyi oolongs, & puerhs. Luckily, I don’t have to do that, LOL.


Except for the black teas you and I are like cupboard opposites, Sil. I still haven’t found a puerh I actually would want to stock. And there are SO MANY of them in my cupboard from the reserve club, lol.


Haha we should swap…ill send you my reserve oolongs…you send me the reserve puerhs lol


For reals. Seriously once this dissertation is done we should swap (and more than just oolongs and puerhs. :)


sounds like a plan! my cupboard is always open for tea exchanges :)

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2201 tasting notes

Sipdown, 221. I can’t believe this one doesn’t have more tasting notes! I suppose it is pretty new but there are very few thoughts on this one posted here. I decided to go ahead and use my sample in my gongfu pot.

My first dong ding oolong was a somewhat untraditional one that was completely unroasted, which I really enjoyed. After that I had a few others that had the more traditional roasty notes in them. I almost didn’t order a sample of this one because of that, but it didn’t specifically mention any roasty notes, so I picked it up anyway. The dry leaf on this one smells light and green at first, but upon being warmed a bit a savory note comes out. I initially saved my rinse and tasted it, but this one was pretty light on flavor so I ended up skipping it. The post-steeping, under-the-lid sniff did yield lot of roasted scents.

The leaves did a fair amount of unfurling in the first, 5-second steep. The liquor smells vegetal and a tad savory-roasty. It reminds me of a savory noodle bowl almost. The flavor is pretty similar. There is almost a miso-like quality to this tea, including the greens that float in the miso soup. The promised “pound cake” notes never materialized, but then again I never really expected them to. To me, it is primarily vegetal, savory, and definitely miso-y. This tea is pleasant, but really just not my thing. I’m glad I got a sample though, because I would have been forever curious otherwise!


dong ding/tung ting – frozen summit oolong is one of my personal favorites and I always have this on hand…I was enjoying this particular one this weekend as a cold brew (one of my favorite ways to enjoy it after the first steep, much like gyokuro) and I think my brewing vessel had a gingering ginger hint to it as I couldn’t find this in the tea itself…back to the labe

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1439 tasting notes

It’s been a while since I’ve dedicated a day to a Verdant tea and I’ve built up quite a number of them. I pulled this one out at random. I don’t have my gongfu on me but the shifty measuring glass, strainer, and tea cup method usually work just as well! I’ll add to this throughout the day.

I poured the whole sample package into the palm of my hand and got floral, peanut butter. The first/rinse cup tastes a little greener and savory but is no less creamy. There’s a hint of spicy green tanginess at the finish. It compliments this extremely processed and watery chimichanga that I’m eating right now. I think the oolong may have more pepper to it. I should make my own chimichanga or burrito in the future.

Second Steep, 7 seconds: This smells more buttery and sweet. The peppercorn is increased here and is now prevalently lingers. It’ also has a tangy red sweetness to it that’s very rich and taunts the boundary between fruity and vegetal. The effect makes me feel deceivingly full, like eating a well varied meal.

190 °F / 87 °C

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612 tasting notes

Still not going to rate teas as my nose is STILL stuffed up from my travel cold, blrm. But my Verdant samplextravaganza arrived today and I was too excited not to at least try something, and I had duplicates for this one (thanks Verdant!).

I went out on a limb with this order—I haven’t had an oolong I reeeally like yet, and the first few I tried (well regarded here, mind) I thought tasted downright strange bordering on gross. I never get the floral and peach elements people always describe. But then I had a tea flight in Portland at the Chinese Garden and it included oolong and pu erh, and I liked both fine, and finally tasted peach in the oolong! When I got back from the trip Verdant had a coupon code going on and I was like, well they’ve been so, so nice to me I want to support them, and if ANYONE has an oolong I might like I bet it’d be them…so here we are. I think I ordered samples of every oolong and pu erh they offer, just about.

This still has that salty thing going on with oolongs that makes me scratch my head, but it is much much gentler, that aspect. And unlike others I’ve had there is a lightly sweet and bready-without-being-yeasty thing I’m digging a lot. There is also a bit of tartness akin to blackberries or raspberries—normally I hate fruity astringency like that in tea (it’s everywhere in cheap supermarket bagged teas, blech), but here it’s light and refreshing, not harsh and puckery. More like actually eating a freshly washed berry than say, a Zinger tea. Clean tasting. I like.

One thing I have noticed as a common element to the few oolongs I’ve tried so far, the good and the weird/gross all, is that unlike black and sometimes green tea it seems unlikely they’d ever go bitter on you. Interesting.

Husband left early this morning to go out of town aaall weekend (won’t be back ‘til late Monday night, playing a show at a festival in Chicago) and I’ve been “good” so I can do pretty much whatever I want every day!! And being the dork I am, you know, all I really want is to play Animal Crossing: New Leaf, nap with the cats, watch Golden Girls, putter over art projects I never seem to find the time for normally, and drink tea the meditative, gaiwan-y way that I find I never have the appropriate time and headspace to devote to properly unless alone. Whee. I suppose I’ll probably hang out with my bestie for girly cocktail and movie night tomorrow, but otherwise just consider me a big reclusive dork n’ loving it, ha.

2nd steep: now it’s butterier, and also plantier but not in a bad way. Kind of like haricots verts cooked in butter, that sweet rich tender cooked green veggie thing. Yummy.

a zillion steeps (well, 6+) later: This is delightful in that way so many Verdant teas are—you can spend an entire half day with it and it transforms, always tasting good but in so many different surprising ways. The salt and whatever that marshy quality is I associate with oolongs was subtle when it was present at all, and disappeared after the 2nd steep, replaced with that fine buttery green vegetable flavor intertwined to varying degrees with light sweetness and a bit of peppery bite slipping in here and there. Often tasted like a delicious veggie saute, cooked bell peppers and fresh peas in their pod all coated with buttery smoothness. This leaves a creamy film feeling in one’s mouth that lingers, and I usually don’t experience that without over-the-top sweet flavoring (think cream earl greys, vanilla dessert teas, etc.), so to have that here with a more vegetal savory profile is novel for me and I really dig it! Didn’t get any cake-y notes until the very end (7th or 8th steep?), and it’s subtle but lovely. Yay my first total success with an oolong! (The one at Lan Su wasn’t bad at all, but it didn’t excite me…it was sweet and light, peachy, which was pleasant but didn’t bowl me over really.)

205 °F / 96 °C 0 min, 30 sec

Amazing success!


I really liked this one too! And I must say yay for quiet weekends!!

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818 tasting notes

Okay, let’s try this again. Steepster just ate my note.

Anyway, what I want to say is:

Mmmmm, buttery! This tea is really buttery! And thick! I also got a vegetal note like corn. It’s bread-y and sweet also. I steeped it maybe 4 or 5 times at 195 degrees for 30 seconds each. In later steepings, there was a bit of spice…maybe the peppercorn that Verdant notes. I didn’t really get raspberry or pound cake, but if I think really hard, it might have been there in the first steep. I’m just so thrilled to find a truly buttery tea. On the shopping list it goes!

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523 tasting notes

I ordered a sample of this after my husband said he liked Dong Ding Oolong. He previously tried a sample from thepuriTea, and I ordered that one too. I wanted to compare them. They are very similar, but this one doesn’t smell floral at all and it is slightly more savory than thepuriTea one.

Thank goodness that Verdant clarifies the distinction between mainland and Taiwanese Oolongs. So far, the only green Oolongs that I like are from Taiwan and I never made the association before. I really do like a delicate floral aroma (I didn’t used to) but I don’t like floral flavor so much (who knows, maybe my taste for that will develop too). What I really like is savory. yummy. (^o^)

200 °F / 93 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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58 tasting notes

Another Verdant tea tea that I get to try thanks to Sil. Your package is coming I promise!

The power went out here this morning before I could make myself a cup of tea so I was very much looking forward to this by the time I got the chance this afternoon.

I haven’t enjoyed an oolong this much since the stash I brought back from Taiwan last year ran out. I’m an old fashioned kind of person who prefers to shop at stores but unless you are looking for a flavoured oolong around these parts you are pretty much out of luck. I was almost at the point of not bothering with oolongs anymore but this has kickstarted my enthusiasm again.

I brewed this one in a gaiwan (or my makeshift version) as per the website. It has a great savoury but slightly sweet flavour, just like the taiwanese oolongs I remember. For me it is predominantly green beans and sweet corn in the earlier steeps with jasmine and sweet pea coming on as the session continues.

I’m very out of practice when it comes to oolong but this is one I’d happily drink again, except that I can’t because verdant have it archived. Still, I’m pleased that I had the opportunity to try it :)


Yay! So glad you’re enjoying trying the teas out :)


Look for it again. Sometimes they come back. Buying tea in season, flying it to the U.S. and not letting the tea sit in a warehouse is why these tea’s sell out. If you get updates, you’ll be informed when new tea arrives back in stock after harvest.


Bonnie- sadly verdant doesn’t Ship to Australia either. But maybe lily would be able to do something for Alice if there were no fruits or what not in them


Yes I have spoken to Verdant and they’ve told me they will make exceptions to their no Australia policy if I am happy to pay the full shipping cost and take full responsibility if it gets nabbed by customs over here. I was having a chat to a tea merchant here the other day and he says that Camellia Sinessis alone is completely fine to import so as long as I stick to straight teas I there would be no issues.

I’ll have to get through all your samples first Sil and some of my own tea before I order though so I’ll keep an eye on what is in stock.

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171 tasting notes

Been sipping this all morning. On steep 6, I love it. Goes down easy, I don’t often drink tea bare, but I love my oolongs this way.

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