Yu Lan Xiang (Magnolia)
Dan Cong Wulong Tea 2019
A rare example of traditional Dan Cong wulong made from old Phoenix Mountain tea trees with an intense lingering floral fragrance like magnolia that endures through numerous pale amber infusions. Produces a complex and full-bodied smooth flavor that fills the entire mouth, without the astringency typical of young Dan Cong wulong. Finished with a traditional roast over lychee wood charcoal.
- Tea Origin
- Wu Dong Mountain, Phoenix Mountain, Chaozhou City, Guangdong Province, China
- Tea Bush
- Yu Lan Xiang (Magnolia)
- Tea Master
- Chen Xiong
- Harvest Time
- Late April
- Picking Standard
- Zhong kai mian
The name, “Magnolia,” comes from the natural floral aroma of the variety of tea bush used in its production. Coaxing this natural fragrance out of the leaves is largely due to the skill of the master who withers, oxidizes, and roasts the tea. A skilled tea master will carefully control the speed of leaves’ oxidation during a tea’s processing to help develop and highlight the unique qualities of its natural aroma.
The processing of Yu Lan Xiang begins when leaves picked at the end of April, the spring season for wulong tea in Wu Dong Mountain. The top 3-4 fresh leaves are picked, following the “zhong kai mian” picking standard. Leaves are picked around noon, and are carried back to the factory before 5 PM. Fresh leaves are withered outside in the sun for an hour or two, depending on how cold the weather is, and then they are moved inside and evenly separated in piles about an inch thick on large round bamboo trays. The trays are stacked on wooden shelves, where they will stay for about eight hours. During this time, the tea master checks the leaves very often to monitor their oxidation. Every half hour or so the master will shake the bamboo trays, twisting the tea leaves. This forces the cells to break on the edges and surfaces of the leaves, gently and naturally oxidizing the tea. When the tea master judges it is time, the oxidation process is halted by frying the leaves in very hot rolling machines. The leaves will quickly be fried for 7-10 minutes at about 200 celsius, depending on the amount of tea leaves. After that, they will use kneading machines to compress and twist the soft, hot tea leaves. The pressure is controlled to give the right amount of compression to twist the leaves into their long shape. The twisted, wet leaves will then be dried by roasting for about 45 minutes. The mao cha is now completed. The leaves will still have stems and some leaves that will not fold because they are too old. These unwanted leaves and stems are sorted out by hand. After the sorting process, the dan cong will be roasted twice more — once using an oven and once again using smokeless charcoal. This is a special quality of this tea, most other dan cong are now only roasted in an oven, and not over charcoal.
Since this tea is picked from older tea bushes, the bitter heaviness associated with dan cong wulongs is not present. This tea is much more mild, but still very rich and complex. The rich aroma will cover your mouth immediately and will stay with you until the last infusion. This is a high quality dan cong, perfect for those who want to try tea made from older tea bushes. Once brewed, the tea has a full-bodied flavor that fills the entire mouth. The degree of intensity of its natural magnolia fragrance endures through numerous infusions.
No chemical fertilizer, pesticide, or herbicide was used in the production of this tea. Click here to read more about our promise to fair trade and the environment.
Yu Lan Xiang (Magnolia) 2019 brewing guidelines
Teaware: 12 oz. glass, porcelain or yi xing clay pot
Amount: 1 Tbs of tea leaves
Water: 212 F (boiling) filtered water.
Infusion: First infusion for 1-2 minutes. The leaves are good for seven infusions.