Dong Ding oolong is famous for a reason, and is one of my personal favourite types of oolong tea. As with many types of tea, there are several variations of Dong Ding oolong, and this particular roasted Gu Xiang version from Fong Mong Tea was new to me.
I opened the pouch and took a whiff of the rolled leaves, finding the nutty, vegetal fragrance warm and inviting. It also reminds me of honey-coated puffed wheat somehow.
As I usually do with oolong tea, I tried this Gu Xiang both in a gaiwan, as well as in a teapot. I first rinsed the leaves with hot water. Then I used water at approximately 85C, with 45ml of water per 2g of leaf to begin this tasting. As the leaves opened up, I added a little more water in 15ml increments.
In the gaiwan I started with a 20 second infusion time, and added 5 seconds to the infusion time with each successive steep. The aroma was sweet, nutty, and inviting. At first sip, my impression was of almonds and sticky rice. The vegetal green notes are very present, with mild, complimentary roasting notes and the nutty sweetness. The liquor is an appealing sunny straw yellow. It reminds me of springtime, but also of autumn, and strikes me as a tea that would be lovely to enjoy any time of year. The flavours shifted subtly as I continued re-infusing. A sweet almondy aftertaste lingered in the back of my throat. Sometimes a little more ‘green’ would peek out, sometimes more almonds and honey, sometimes I tasted more minerals. I continued on for a good 10 infusions, truly enjoying each one. The final steep, I allowed to sit for a few solid minutes for a grand finale. This final burst of flavour also has a foggy undertone and has left me with a fond memory.
In the teapot, I used 4g of leaf for 12oz of water and a longer 6-minute steep time. This is one of those occasions where I can’t really tell which way I prefer the tea, both are perfectly delicious in their own right. Both are fantastic unsweetened. A little added honey would complement the nutty notes very well.
(A sample of this tea was provided to me in exchange for a review. The opinions expressed are my own.)
Other Fong Mong Tea Reviews:
Tea Review: Ruby 18 GABA tea from Fong Mong Tea
Tea Review: Spring 2018 Sijichun Four Seasons Oolong from Fong Mong Tea
Tea Review: Tsui Yu Jade Oolong from Fong Mong Tea
Tea Review: Jin Xuan by Fong Mong Tea
Tea Review: Jasmine Scented Oolong from Fong Mong Tea