If pu-erhs don’t suit your taste but you are looking for some of the same unique medicinal characteristics and timelessness (becomes better with age) then you should try out a Da Hong Pao, also known as Big Red Robe.
From the first time I tried it many years ago to now it has remained one of my favorite teas. It is a darker roasted oolong with lovely attributes. When the liquid first hits your tongue roasty and toasty notes flourish. Then subtly sweet plum and floral accents, almost jasmine in essence.
If you are having trouble deciphering these flavors make sure to steep between two to three minutes and swish it in your mouth a few times. I found this tea company while on the prowl for my favorite maple syrup (Faxon Farms, so amazing).
The owners truly know their tea and when I told them what I like to drink they immediately recommended Da Hong Pao. I will be a repeat customer for sure.
Here’s the scoop!
Leaf Type: Oolong
Where to Buy: Great Tea Road Company
Da Hong Pao still grows in traditional, small-scale tea gardens, and each spring the farmers still climb the hills to implore the tea god to bring new shoots. It’s the combination of rock and water that gives Da Hong Pao its rich flavor. The rain that pours off the sheer rock walls, flowing down narrow streams and pretty waterfalls, becomes imbued with minerals, which then impart their goodness to the tea. A legends has sprung up around the original Da Hong Pao trees, which still perch precariously on a cliff face not far from the monastery.
What Da Hong Pao taste like? This is a medium charcoal roasting oolong. It gives a flavor of red dates and purple plums and slightly roasted with light floral / fruity aroma. It is clean finished and clear, medium-amber colored liquor.