Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Phoenix Moumtain Pictures

Blooming season for tea trees.
Who would argue this tree does not produce enough tea by itself?

Wu Dong Village

Checking out moss on tree branches

Half dead 700 years old Song Zhong Tree


Soïwatter said...

Dear Imen,

I think it's been the first time that I comment on this blog, even if I've been following it for a little time. I've discovered it when I dicovered Dan Cong two years ago in my favourite tea house in Paris (France). And your writings are giving so many information about these marvellous teas.

Thanks a lot!

Whow! a blooming Dan Cong...
May I ask a few questions...
At the sight of the tree size (I had already seen some of it, but I never asked about it), which amount of leaves can be obtained from a single harvest on such a tree? And how many harvest per year is there on a single tree?
And is there significant differences between spring ans autumn harvest as there is on Taiwanese oolongs?

Thanks in advance,
I'm looking forward from reading from you soon..


Imen said...

hi Soiwatter:

Thanks for reading my blog. :)

The tree you see in the picture is not producing young shoots during winter. They are all matured leaves. In the Spring time when new shoots spring out, we collect a stem with (1) half open leaf and 2 fully open leaves from each shoot. High mountain trees produce only one crop in the spring. Mid to lower mountain trees produce in other season depending on the elevation.

Each season are different in terms of flavor, aroma and appearance.

We are talking about nature here, seasonal effect doesn't change much from location to location, just like people. Taiwanese tea tree is still a camellia senensis plant. Essentially there is no fundamental behavioral difference, except varietal biology content differences.

Think of a Canadian maple tree and a Japanese maple tree, both turn red in winter despite of where they are grown.

Soïwatter said...

Hi Imen,

Thanks for the informations.
I've always been wondering on Dan Cong. These tea (and tea plants) are so incredible, not only with regard to the brews quality, but also for their age, size, leaves...

I have a better knowledge of Taiwanese and Anxi teas, as I have good contacts with sellers and tea lovers.
So I have drunk teas from the same plantation from different seasons, different batches, different oxidation and hong pei, and different years of course, particularly for a Shan Lin Shi plantation and a Lugu County Dong Ding (Feng Huang village). A little less for Anxi where I only tasted three batches from the same plantation (one from this spring and two from this autumn). So, this is for me a way of "seasonal" comparison.

I'm a little less used to variation in Dan Cong. The only one that I've been following from one year to the other is a Ba Ye (entrance-price): the first year it was tasting pure passion fruit, more than if I was biting in a true fruit. The second year, this "passion-fruity" characteristic was less omnipresent: also some citrus-taste and a little of flower...

But following a tea is a exercise in style; and Dan Cong are not teas for such "games": too precious.
And I feel I'm in still in a bases discovery phase, and it's too early for such consideration.

I've seen on your last post (The city you've visited) that you have brought back very old DC gifts. I've never tasted aged DC. But I've tasted 20years old Dong Ding and Yan Cha. Are the effects of aging similar (mellow and purity)? Or aging brings something special to Dan Cong's?

Imen said...

"But following a tea is a exercise in style; and Dan Cong are not teas for such "games": too precious."

Teas are ultimately for drinking, precious or not. To follow Dan Cong is a big task regardless of price, due to its vast number of varieties. To be specific, each tree sprouted from a single seed is one unique varietal by itself. It's better to start with the commercial Dan Congs if you want to. But do find good grades of commercial Dan Congs to follow.

Aged oolong and puerh teas are very similar after 30 years. Substances are decomposed/transformed/oxydized in similar way. There will still be some difference between a 20 years old tea tho. The younger the bigger the difference in taste.