The title of this article certainly assumes a lot. Mainly, it assumes that you will find teas from the Fengqing County in Yunnan Province of China as pleasant as we do. But then, that’s the reputation they have.
Fengqing is in one of the four famous Pu-erh production areas (Xishuangbanna, Pu’er, Lincang, and Baoshan). That’s in the northwest of Lincang, about 580 kilometers from Kunming, and ranges from 919 to 3,098 meters elevation. Rainfall is plentiful (about 1,200 mm per year) and the average humidity is 70%. The world famous Dian Hong style tea originated here, and it was an important part of the Ancient Tea Route used by tea traders. Also, tea plants from this area have been spread to other planting areas by seeds and cuttings. There is a big (1.84 meters in diameter) and old (about 3,200 years in the claim) tea tree there that is called “Jing Xiu Cha Wang” in Fengqing village. The climate helps produce a liquid that feels light in the mouth and gives off a rich and complex aroma. The tea also has one of the most powerful Chaqis, a relative lack of bitterness, and a general character that makes you feel both overjoyed and relaxed.
Use a generous amount of these spiral-shaped leaves to get several steepings (three or more) from the same batch. Keep the steeping times short and you’ll get even more steeps than you might expect from a black tea.
This is certainly a tea category to have on your “must try” list. You will find them free of astringency and great value for the price. They also make a nice iced tea. Steep up a bit extra strong, let cool to room temperature, and then chill overnight in the refrigerator. Contrary to popular opinion, they will cloud up but still taste fine.
A couple of the finest are featured in our Black Tea Tasting Assortment Pack (7 types of tea in total).