Monday, February 12, 2018

Seven Cups Da Hong Pao 2017

Country of Origin: China
Leaf Appearance: dark, somewhat twisted
Steep time: 30 seconds
Water Temperature: 212 degrees
Preparation Method: porcelain gaiwan
Liquor: deep reddish brown

As many of you know, I'm a bit of a Seven Cups fangirl. Their videos on YouTube and iTunes were a huge part of my early tea education. I'm still obsessed with their Huang Zhi Xiang, one of the first teas that I really fell in love with. When I had the opportunity to try some of their newest Da Hong Pao from Mr. Liu, I just had to jump on it.

Da Hong Pao, otherwise known as Big Red Robe, is an oolong tea from the Wuyi Mountain region of Fujian, China. It is arguably one of China's most famous teas and has garnered a reputation for being more expensive than gold. Thankfully, this one is actually quite affordable in comparison to many others I've seen available elsewhere.

The dry leaves were dark and fairly uniform with a slight sheen to them. They had a wonderfully comforting toasty aroma. I found myself inhaling deeply, especially after the tea was placed inside of my preheated gaiwan. The liquor was a deep reddish brown with great clarity, even when unfiltered.

Wuyi oolongs are known for their minerality and this one was no exception. In addition to those flinty notes, it was surprisingly complex and floral. The roast was present but not domineering. A sweetness in the finish lingered on my palate long after each sip. Tea friend Geoff over at Steep Stories likened it to bliss cinematic endings in his review. I can't say that I disagree.

I always use a porcelain for reviews but there was a bit leftover in my sample packet so I also gave it a go in my teeny tiny Petr Novak clay pot. The tea performed equally well in both vessels. Have you tried this tea yet? Let me know about it in the comments!

Da Hong Pao sample provided for review by Seven Cups.