How many types of Dan Chong are there?


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How many types of Dan Chong are there?

Postby Phyll » Mar 31st, '06, 15:12

I'm exploring Dan Chong oolong (a.k.a. Lone Bush oolong) nowadays. Does anybody know how many types of Dan Chong are there? I've read at least of three types: Song Chong (?), Feng Huang (Phoenix), and Kwai Hua Shang (Osmanthus).

What are the differences, and how do you determine superiority and rarity?

Any advise would be appreciated.

~Phyll
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Postby MarshalN » Apr 2nd, '06, 05:59

I am not a real expert on Danchong, but from what I can gather, how a tea seller calls their Danchong is almost entirely up to them. The names generally just denote different grades. This is, I think, more or less the same type of problem as with tieguanyin -- there are lots of names for it, but at the end of the day, taste is what matters.

Songzhong Danchong is generally the best. Prices can be way high. Feng Huang is usually a grade or two down, but there is, I think, no real system to how that's named. I've also seen lots of names for lots of different Danchong at some tea sellers. More often than not, they are named for what kind of taste they resemble. They taste similar, for the most part, but Songzhong is certainly better.

With something like Guihuaxiang (Osmanthus) though, they might have actually added flower to the tea, so what you're tasting may not be the actual tea itself. So, buyer beware there.
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Postby Phyll » Apr 4th, '06, 11:57

Thanks, MarshalN. I bought some Danchong in Guangzhou but it's not the Song Chong. They let me taste the Song Chong side by side with this one (not sure which kind specifically), and while I thought the Song Chong was really really good, I opted for the other one at the same price as the Song Chong.

This is a really interesting oolong variety. It's not bitter, but rather it's peachy, fruity and floral. Very long lasting aftertaste ("huigan").

I think you posted that you are currently in Beijing? How is the situation with tea stores there? Are they at almost every corner like in Guangzhou (also like Starbucks in Seattle)? :)
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Postby MarshalN » Apr 4th, '06, 17:32

You can read more about Beijing from my blog (link in my signature) but in sum, there are tonnes of teashops, especially in the Maliandao Hutong. If you know what you're looking for, you can get some pretty good stuff there. One thing you can't get though is aged puerh (raw). They only have new stuff (oldest is about 10 years) or cooked puerh.

That's the only thing that Hong Kong has that Beijing doesn't seem to offer. Everything else, they do. Although I'm not sure about the availability of things like Danchong or Wuyi oolong. I didn't look for those this trip.
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Postby Phyll » Apr 4th, '06, 18:53

I see. I guess Guangzhou and Hongkong (Guangdong in general) are the places to go for some serious aged Pu-erh. They sell a lot of the aged Sheng and Shou in Guangzhou. I saw many "old" (mostly from the 80's onwards) beeng, bricks, tuocha and loose...of course each costing an arm and a leg.
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Postby MarshalN » Apr 4th, '06, 19:18

Yeah, compressed cakes always cost an arm and a leg, and you gotta know what you're getting. You can't really age a shou cake though. They should be cheap.
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