This Dong Ding Oolong (凍頂烏龍茶) is another product from our tea master in Taiwan and we are very excited to feature such a great example of this popular tea. The name Dong Ding means ‘Frozen Peak’ and is named after a mountain in the area where this tea originally comes from. This tea is from April 2020 harvest, baked by our tea master in May 2020.
Originally Dong Ding Oolong (also known as Tung Ting Oolong) comes from Lugu Township in Nantou County where it is made from the Qing Xin cultivar. Due to the huge rise in popularity of Dong Ding Oolong, that area can no longer cope with the demand and other areas around Taiwan started growing and producing Dong Ding style oolongs. It is now accepted by many that Dong Ding not only refers to the original tea made from Qing Xin cultivar grown in Lugu but has now become the name to describe a particular style of tea that is very similar to that original tea. Some tea purists will not necessarily agree with that, but there are certainly some fantastic versions of Dong Ding Oolong available, both in the more traditional baked style as well as in a more lightly oxidised floral version. If you are interested in exploring the more traditional baked styles, you might be also interested in trying our Meishan Hong Shui Oolong.
This particular Dong Ding Oolong is made with the classic Qing Xin ‘Green Heart’ (青心) cultivar. While there are many other modern versions of this type of tea on the market that are lightly oxidised and highly floral, this is a more complex version that is baked multiple times and is much more traditional. These more traditional versions of Dong Ding Oolong are quite hard to come by. This is partly due to changing market demand – the more lightly oxidised floral version is very popular with many tea drinkers. Partly it is also down to the fact that the more traditional method of processing of this oolong requires great skill, care, attention and, crucially, time.
This oolong undergoes complex multiple baking processes resulting in a light gold coloured liquor with a lovely floral and comforting toasty aroma. The baking process involves low temperatures and slow bakes over many hours, producing a tea that has a mellow sweetness while still retaining the floral character. The profile is complex, striking a fine balance between floral and baked toasty flavours. There are notes of exotic flowers, spices, caramelised nuts and wild honey.
This tea is best brewed at 90°C for 3-5 minutes according to your taste. It should be brewed multiple times (3+) depending on your taste preferences.