16 March 2008

Old tea at the morning

Today I wake up pretty early to watch Formula 1. The Australian race proved to be very exciting, only third of the cards was able to complete it. Fortunately, the weather is sunny, so I took few pictures from my window.

I like the contrast of centuries old catholic church I see to my left and the socialistic blocks of flat which were built in the seventies to my right. Well, the builders had to complete thousands of cheap lodgings, so they did what they could, in the lazy socialistic style.

Most Slovaks live in houses like that. I live in house like that. Houses too dry to age pu-erh properly. Well, I will see what they will do with my pu-erh stash in next decades.

Since the first race of F1 was a good moment to try some decent tea, I decided to drink aged Dan Cong. The 1986 aged Dan Cong from Imen is the oldest tea she has – well, I dated girls younger than this tea! Ok, one girl :-)

The dry leaves are small, of uniform dark color. Since they smelled pretty aged, I decided not to use my yixing teapot dedicated to fragrant Dan Cong oolongs and I prepared the tea in thick-walled yixing instead. Also, I used nearly boiling water, not 90C (195F) as I would use with fresh Dan Congs.

The brew came out dark showing the age of tea leaves. The color was like of aged sheng pu-erh with smell and taste close to it, too. Leaves are small, much smaller, than the current premium-quality Dan Congs. They are uniformly dark.

This tea is much more aged then Dan Cong. The flower, honey, orchid fragrances are long gone leaving wood, bark and cellar taste.

Still, it’s an interesting tea with OK price tag that lasts enough infusions. Maybe not as complex as aged pu-erh could be, nor as fragrant as young Dan Cong is, the nice and round with lingering aftertaste make this tea worth at least to try.


Salsero said...

Thanks for describing your reactions to this tea. I also tried some and noticed a pleasant level of viscosity (something it has in common with a lot of younger Dan Congs) and a pronounced roasted taste.

There seemed to be a little competition between the comforting, slightly smokey, dried-cherry feel of the roasting and the shy soul of the young DC popping out periodically.

~ Phyll said...

I would love to see more of your hometown and streets. I've never been to Slovakia before.