Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Age Da Hong Pao

Da Hong Pao is a famous oolong tea that originates from the beautiful and scenic Wuyi Mountains in Fujian Province, China.

In the category of age tea, despite there being many different types of tea there exist similarities that define this unique group of tea. To understand the nature of age tea and how these teas develop with time a tea drinker must drink widely. Having covered age puerh and old versions of Liu An and Fu tea in this entry I present the first age oolong - Da Hong Pao. The heavy roast employed in the production of Da Hong Pao makes this tea a good candidate for aging. I find that time can enhance a young Da Hong Pao by softening the strong elements of the newly roasted tea. The fire elements, astringency and stiffness of the new tea will settle with time and the character of the tea will open up to greater complexity. An age Da Hong Pao can develop smoother and more rounded characters, increasing in sweetness and becoming more viscous when brewed.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Brewing Tea


Brewing tea is an art involving good coordination, precise timing and a keen sense of observation. For serious tea drinkers it is very important to know how to brew tea well. The reason is simple. You can have the best tea leaves and use the best water in the world and end up with the worst cup of tea. Each individual tea has its own ideal brewing parameters to bring out its best characteristics and personality.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Food Pairings - Banana Honey Toast w/ Yiwu Tea

i) Simply eye catching! The ebene vegetable activated carbon sourdough by Maison Jean Philippe. ii) Baked and ready to be served.

Maison Jean Philippe is arguably the best bread maker in Bangkok. The breads are of excellent quality and are known for having a hard crust whilst being soft and elastic on the inside. A chunky slice provides an excellent base for which to spread a thick layer of butter to be topped by bananas and followed by a generous drizzle of honey. Bake until the banana absorbs the butter and honey and takes on a custard consistency. The flavor of the cooked banana infused with butter and honey pairs very well with the signature toffee and caramel (ish) character of age Yiwu tea.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Mixed Drinks - Ripe Puerh Tea w/ Honey

Whilst I am a purist at heart, in life there are exceptions and the combination of ripe puerh tea and honey (+ milk is optional) is so delicious and comforting I will happily accept a cup to slowly sip and savor. If you have a sweet tooth and you enjoy ripe puerh tea I highly recommend giving this a try. Additionally it is a great way to introduce ripe puerh to new tea drinkers. The honey sweetness provides a familiar note that most people can relate to and makes ripe puerh tea much more approachable for the uninitiated.

Brewing a cup of ripe puerh tea from an age Gong Ting teacake. The pollen from the honey gives the tea an orange hue. Be sure to brew the tea stronger if you decide to add milk.