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Wu Long (Oolong) Tea

Song Zhong 宋種

Woodsy, big bold body

Regular price $18.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $18.00 USD

Vintage:

Spring 2018: Big, bold body with woodsy notes

About This Tea

This ancient tea is believed to be from some of the oldest heirloom tea trees, with descendants back over a thousand years ago.

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  • Origin

    Wu Dong, Feng Huang Shan (Phoenix Mountain), Chao Zhou, Guang Dong Province, China (~1000-1200m elevation)

  • History and Significance

    Song Zhong means the descendant of Song, which gets its name from the local belief that some of the oldest tea trees are a direct descendant from tea trees from 1300 years ago.

  • Category

    Category: Wu Long (Oolong) Tea

    Sub-Category: Chao Zhou Wu Long (Dan Cong, Phoenix Wu Long)

  • Processing

    Song Zhong is a typical large leaf trunk varietal that can take on more mature fermentation and a higher roast. This difference results in a tea with a downward mouthfeel and a fuller body than most Dan Congs. The freshly picked leaves need to be sun wilted first. Once the leaves are silky and soft, they are moved inside to continue to wilt under shade and gently flipped occasionally. The shaking step is the signature step to making Wu Long (Oolong), where the tea maker shows their skill by regulating how the water travels from the stems to the leaves and out. It is traditionally done by shaking the leaves on a bamboo tray but is now commonly done with a tumbling machine. This step varies by tea and by the weather; it takes a thoroughly experienced tea maker to decide how soon and often to shake the tea. This step usually takes tea makers all night to complete. After the tea has rested for a few hours to ferment, the leaves are then transferred to a firing wok or machine to have all the residual enzymes killed early in the morning. The hot teas are then transferred to a rolling device, rolled into string shapes, and spread out evenly onto baking trays to be baked dry. After the tea season, the refining process of tea making starts with the tedious step of picking out old stems and leaves, usually taking months to finish. Then the “cleaned” teas are charcoal roasted over a very dim ash fire for 6-10 hours. Many teas need to repeat this step, with at least three weeks' resting time between each roasting.

  • Tasting Notes

    Song Zhong is easily made heavy and musky. However, this Wu Dong harvest is clean and elegant while still showing the bold profile characteristics of a Song Zhong. This ancient varietal is known for its low aromatics and a prominent woodsy note.

  • Brewing Instructions

    Please see above for the category specific brewing specs for Gong Fu brewing. For brewing in a teapot, mug, or single cup visit this article here.

  • Learn How To Gong Fu Brew

    This foundational course is a great resource to help you understand the methods and motions of Gong Fu Brewing.