Wu Yi Shan "Zi Hong Pao" Purple Da Hong Pao Oolong Tea * Spring 2017

Tea type
Oolong Tea
Oolong Tea Leaves
Broth, Cherry, Creamy, Mineral, Petrichor, Roasted
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Bulk, Loose Leaf
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Edit tea info Last updated by Cameron B.
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  • “100C, 5g/100mL, gongfu. I apparently deleted my note before uploading it to steepster, so here goes, from memory: First of all, thanks to fidgetiest for the tea! It was very much appreciated The...” Read full tasting note

From Yunnan Sourcing

“Zi Hong Pao” is a purple varietal that’s a naturally mutated offshoot from the classic “Da Hong Pao” varietal. It’s also called “Jiu Long Pao” (lit. 9 Dragon Robe) or Wu Yi varietal #303. It’s “medium-leaf” class of tea, not purely Assamica or Sinensis. The leaves are thick and dense with a purple/red/green color when fresh.

Zi Hong Pao is a very rare tea with only about 10 mu of land in total producing this tea. The buds and leaf shoots are slow to grow and the harvest is the last of the spring harvests.

Perhaps the most special aspect of “Zi Hong Pao” is the lovely delicious, thick and pungent tea that it brews. I recommend drinking the rinse. With just a 10 second rinse you are greeted with a vibrant and viscous tea soup. The second through the fifth infusions are really full and exciting to drink. The 6th through 8th infusion is still quite strong and pungent but the needs to be pushed a little bit.

Truly a remarkable tea in pedigree, taste and experience.

May 2017 harvest

Area: Wu Yi Mountains, Xing Zhen, Cao Dun Village

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1 Tasting Note

61 tasting notes

100C, 5g/100mL, gongfu.
I apparently deleted my note before uploading it to steepster, so here goes, from memory:
First of all, thanks to fidgetiest for the tea! It was very much appreciated
The smell of the dry leaves is just…roasted which was concerning as someone who doesn’t like 1 note roasted teas (like hojicha). However, upon placing the leaves into a pre-rinsed hot gaiwan, there were some nice aromas that started to wake up like cherries. I chose to not rinse the tea per Scott’s recommendation, and I’m glad I didn’t!
1- (10s): Now the wet leaves smell like pomegranite, the roastedness has taken a backseat, I’m glad this has more to it than just roast. In aroma, this reminds of a dancong. Upon tasting, I’m hit with a really thick, rich broth. It reminds me of the richness in hong/black tea but without having any malt or chocolate characteristics. Goes down super smooth. I wish that the fruitiness had made it to the actual liquor but it makes for a nice incense-like aroma in the air.
5-7 (20-30s): This tastes really mineral and nourishing, but not quite as thick as before. Still, goes down super smooth for how rich this is.
8: Well….something went down last night and I left the leaves in the gaiwan for like 20 minutes after pouring boiling water on them. I decided to take a sip and…not bitter or astringent at all. Still rich and dare I say a creamy texture. I decided to leave the leaves overnight and come back to them in the AM
9-12: I’m surprised I’m able to keep steeping this after the 20 minute long steep yesterday. Two things—1)these leaves have a lot to give, though I’m having a hard time picking out individual tastes beyond mineral and a rich texture. 2) I feel safe calling these leaves bomb proof—steep them aggressively if that’s your style, I think you’ll get a lot more out of these doing that!
All in all, bombproof tea, with qualities of a lot of other teas: creaminess like a taiwanese oolong, aroma like a dancong, minerality like a wuyi oolong, richness like a black tea. An interesting hybrid but unfortunately only excels in minerality which is not one of my favorite flavors but I can still appreciate it.

Flavors: Broth, Cherry, Creamy, Mineral, Petrichor, Roasted

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